Abstract

This paper presents the impact of an axially tilted variable stator vane platform on penny cavity flow and passage flow, with the aid of both optical and pneumatic measurements in an annular cascade wind tunnel as well as steady CFD analyses. Variable stator vanes (VSVs) in axial compressors require a clearance from the endwalls. This means that penny cavities around the vane platform are inevitable. Production and assembly deviations can result in a vane platform which is tilted about the circumferential axis. Due to this deformation, backward facing steps occur on the platform edge. Penny cavity and main flow in geometries with and without platform tilting were compared in an annular cascade wind tunnel, which comprises a single row of 30 VSVs. Detailed particle image velocimetry (PIV) measurements were conducted inside the penny cavity and in the vane passage. Steady pressure and velocity data was obtained by two-dimensional multi-hole pressure probe traverses in the inflow and the outflow. Furthermore, pneumatic measurements were carried out using pressure taps inside the penny cavity. Additionally, oil flow visualization was conducted on the airfoil, hub, and penny cavity surfaces. Steady CFD simulations with boundary conditions, according to the measurements, have been benchmarked against experimental data. The results show that tilting the VSV platform reduces the mass flow into and out of the penny cavity. By decreasing penny cavity leakage, platform tilting also affects the passage flow where it leads to a reduced turbulence level and total pressure loss in the leakage flow region. In summary, the paper demonstrates the influence of penny platform tilting on cavity flow and passage flow and provides new insights into the mechanisms of penny cavity-associated losses.

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