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Publication Title | Improving of the micro-turbine’s centrifugal impeller performance by changing the blade angles

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Copyright © 2010 ICCES ICCES, vol.14, no.1, pp.1-22

Improving of the micro-turbine’s centrifugal impeller performance by changing the blade angles

R. A. Tough1,2, A. M. Tousi2, J. Ghaffari2

Summary

In this paper, micro-turbine centrifugal impeller with three different blade angles was investigated by using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) method. The other basic geometric parameters are held constant. The influence of the blade an- gles change on the observed values was determined from numerical solution of the flow in the impeller with help of the FLUENT software. The numerical simulation focused on the air flow from compressor impeller inlet to exit, and the performance of impeller is predicted. The numerical solution was performed for original im- peller geometry and for two other cases, in which blade inlet angle and backward sweep was changed. The standard k − ε turbulence model was used to obtain the eddy viscosity. Performance of the code was verified using measured data for the Eckardt impeller.

Keywords: micro-turbine centrifugal compressor, CFD, blade inlet angle, backward sweep

Introduction

Microturbines are gas turbines with a power ranging approximately from 10 to 200 kW. These devices can be used in stationary, transport or auxiliary power applica- tions. In a micro-turbine, a centrifugal compressor compresses the inlet air and a radial turbine change the hot gas kinetic energy to the rotary work. Both turbo- machinery components are radial. Micro-turbine compressors have been widely accepted as effective devices to improve the performance of these engines. The flow through the centrifugal compressor is complex due to growth of boundary lay- ers and flow separation on blade surfaces, the formation of secondary flows due to rotation and passage curvature and tip leakage in the impeller region. Resulting jet-wake formation is associated with high viscous losses and affects the operat- ing range of the rotating impeller downstream. To improve the aerodynamic per- formance of centrifugal compressor it is necessary to suppress the separation and wake formation maintaining high level of diffusion within the impeller. It is essen- tial to understand the flow structure to achieve these objectives within the passages. The complexity of the flow in a centrifugal impeller impacts the performance of impeller and makes it difficult to predict flow field correctly. Methods for accurate

1Corresponding author. E-mail address: reza_tog@yahoo.com

2Department of Aerospace Engineering, Amir Kabir University of Technology, Tehran, Iran

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