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GPPS Journal Papers

Effects of Stator Platform Geometry Features on Blade Row Performance

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Derek J. Taylor 1, John Peter Longley

1 Whittle Laboratory, 1 J.J. Thomson Avenue, Cambridge, CB3 0DY

Abstract

This paper details an experimental investigation, using a linear cascade, into the effects of real geometry features on the aerodynamic performance of stator blade rows within axial flow compressors. The specific geometric features investigated include shroud cavities, inter-platform gaps, vane-pack gaps and the effects of misalignment of the platform endwalls due to manufacturing tolerances. A computational investigation into these effects is also included. To ensure that the linear cascade measurements are representative of a multi-stage compressor environment a novel experimental technique was developed to generate a hub endwall boundary layer which had skew. The boundary layer skew generation method involves injecting flow along the cascade endwall in such a manner as to control both the displacement thickness and tangential momentum thickness of the resulting boundary layer. Without the presence of the endwall boundary layer skew the linear cascade could not reproduce the flow features typically observed in a multi-stage compressor. The investigation reveals that real geometry features can have a significant impact on the flowfield within a blade passage. For a shrouded stator, increasing the leakage flow rate increases the stagnation pressure loss coefficient. However, high levels of whirl pickup of the leakage flow as it passes through the stator-shroud cavity can offset the natural secondary flow within the stator passage and thus reduce the stagnation pressure loss. All of the steps and gaps that were observed to be present in real compressors were found to increase the stagnation pressure loss relative to that of a smooth endwall. It is also shown that the computational method is capable of capturing the trends observed in the experiments.

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