Direct Numerical Simulation (DNS) of flow through a linear compressor cascade with incoming free-stream turbulence was performed. On the pressure side, the boundary layer flow is found to undergo by-pass transition: The incident vortical disturbances trigger the formation of elongated boundary layer perturbation jets (or streaks) with amplitudes on the order of 10% of the mean flow. The inception of turbulent spots, which leads to breakdown, is triggered on the backward perturbation jets (negative u-fluctuations). The turbulent patches spread and finally merge into the downstream, fully turbulent region. The suction surface boundary layer is initially subject to a Favorable Pressure Gradient (FPG), followed by a strong Adverse Pressure Gradient (APG). The FPG suppresses the formation of boundary layer streaks. The result is a stabilized boundary layer that does not undergo transition. Farther downstream, the strong APG causes the laminar boundary layer to separate, which is followed by turbulent reattachment.

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