Different active flow control techniques have been investigated in a 1.5-stage axial-flow compressor. Looking at a low-speed single-stage environment, many researchers have shown that highly loaded compressors are tip critical, showing stall inception caused by short length scale disturbances (spikes). It has been shown by several authors that these disturbances are related to the spillage of endwall flow ahead of the blading (spill forward). For the present work, different tip injection configurations were investigated in order to stabilize the near casing flow, increasing the operating range of the compressor. Stall margin improvement and the impact on stage efficiency are compared and discussed. Oil flow pictures of the casing wall above the rotor and of the stator blades as well as traverse data from pneumatic 5-hole probes show the impact of flow control on rotor and stator performance. Another method of energizing the casing wall boundary layer is the removal of low energy fluid by a circumferential slot above the rotor, which was also studied experimentally. Again, the impact on compressor operating range and efficiency, as well as flow field information collected by oil flow visualization and traverse data are discussed. Comparing the different flow control techniques, it is shown that increasing stall margin is not directly linked to stage efficiency. As described in various publications, discrete tip injection is a very powerful technique as far as range extension is concerned, but it also has substantial drawbacks such as the circumferential inhomogeneity of the rotor exit flow. These inhomogeneities may result in poor stator performance, overall resulting in a drop of stage efficiency. This problem does not occur if circumferential boundary layer removal above the rotor is used. This method however shows much less potential for increasing the operating range.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.