The improvement of efficiency and operating range by optimizing blade-loading distribution of three-dimensional (3D) centrifugal compressor impellers is investigated using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analyses and performance tests. The design points of suction flow coefficients investigated in the present study were 0.05 and 0.073. Two design approaches for 3D impeller were employed: a conventional method and a newly developed one. In order to achieve higher efficiency and wider operating range, the blade loading and relative velocity distribution were optimized in the new design procedure. In addition, to clarify the performance improvement of 3D impellers against current two-dimensional (2D) ones, both performance characteristics were compared. The test results showed the efficiencies of the newly designed 3D impellers were increased by about 0.5–1.5% in comparison with those of the conventional impellers, while the operating ranges of both were almost the same. Further, the efficiencies of the newly designed 3D impellers increased by about 3% in comparison with those of the 2D impellers at both design points. At the same time, the operating ranges of the former impellers were about 2.1–2.8 times as wide as those of the latter.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.