Similarity Analysis of Compressor Tip Clearance Flow Structure PUBLIC ACCESS

[+] Author Affiliations
G. T. Chen, E. M. Greitzer, C. S. Tan

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA

F. E. Marble

California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA

Paper No. 90-GT-153, pp. V001T01A049; 11 pages
  • ASME 1990 International Gas Turbine and Aeroengine Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 1: Turbomachinery
  • Brussels, Belgium, June 11–14, 1990
  • Conference Sponsors: International Gas Turbine Institute
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-7904-7
  • Copyright © 1990 by ASME


A new approach is presented for analyzing compressor tip clearance flow. The basic idea is that the clearance velocity field can be (approximately) decomposed into independent through-flow and cross-flow, since chordwise pressure gradients are much smaller than normal pressure gradients in the clearance region. As in the slender body approximation in external aerodynamics, this description implies that the three-dimensional, steady, clearance flow can be viewed as a two-dimensional, unsteady flow. Using this approach, a similarity scaling for the cross-flow in the clearance region is developed and a generalized description of the clearance vortex is derived. Calculations based on the similarity scaling agree well with a wide range of experimental data in regard to flow features such as cross-flow velocity field, static pressure field, and tip clearance vortex trajectory. The scaling rules also provide a useful way of exploring the parametric dependence of the vortex trajectory and strength for a given blade row. The emphasis of the approach is on the vortical structure associated with the tip clearance because this appears to be a dominant feature of the endwall flow; it is also shown that this emphasis gives considerable physical insight into overall features seen in the data.

Copyright © 1990 by ASME
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