Surge of turbo compressors can cause large almost step like changes in flow and pressure, which can potentially damage the compressor and any equipment that is in direct connection with the compressor. In spite of an anti-surge controller (ASC), at extreme events surge cycles may occur. In order to design the compressor and attached equipment such that surge cycles can be sustained without damage, the characteristics of a surge cycle should be known.

This paper presents a model that describes the surge cycle in centrifugal compressors, which is a combination of the model developed by Greitzer and a model of the suction and discharge pipe system.

The surge model has been validated with tests on a full scale compressor system. The simulations compare very well with the test results, although the model required tuning of one parameter. The validation demonstrates that the model is robust and can be effectively applied for the evaluation of surge cycles in newly designed compressor systems.

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