The authors previously found that compressor stage efficiency in a high specific speed range was significantly improved by employing an increased relative velocity diffusion ratio coupled with a high backsweep angle. In spite of such a high relative velocity diffusion ratio, the same surge margin as with a conventional design could be achieved by using a special front loading distribution with a lightly loaded inducer. In the present study, the blade loading distribution was further optimized in order to achieve a larger surge margin than previously. Four types of fully shrouded impellers were designed, manufactured and tested to evaluate the effects of blade loading, backsweep angle and relative velocity diffusion ratio on compressor performance. The design suction flow coefficient was 0.125 and the machine Mach number was 0.87. Test results showed that the developed impeller achieved 3.8% higher stage efficiency and 11% larger surge margin than the conventional design without reducing the pressure coefficient and choke margin. It was concluded that aft loading coupled with a high degree of reaction was a very effective way to improve surge margin as well as stage efficiency. Stator matching was also investigated by changing the design incidence angle which was shown to have little influence on surge margin in the present test results.

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