The rotary compressor is widely used in small air conditioners, and is the most important element in the system. It relies on eccentric rolling pistons that rotate at high speed to compress refrigerant in the cylinder. The lubricant oil in the rotary compressor is used for lubricating the bearing and sealing the clearance of sliding parts. However, the oil can experience complex and highly-coupled atomization processes when discharged from the cylinder, and part of oil droplets can exhaust from the rotary compressor by the refrigerant flow and reduce the efficiency and reliability of the compressor as a result. Thus, characterizing the behavior of oil droplets in the lower cavity of a rotary compressor where the atomization occurs is a major challenge for manufacturers who rely on CFD tools to predict the multiphase flow. By modifying a rotary compressor, the oil behavior in the lower cavity of a rotary compressor is observed and recorded by shadowgraphy. In the current phase, the number, size, and morphology of oil droplets are analyzed statistically with image processing method, which provides better understanding to the atomization mode in the lower cavity, the velocity of the mist of oil droplets is calculated with Optical Flow Velocimetry. The results can assist designers in improving the CFD analysis of compressors and ultimately reducing the Oil Discharge Rate (ODR).

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