This paper presents a computational assessment of the use of Single Dielectric Barrier Discharge (SDBD), or plasma, actuators for the suppression of short-length scale (spike) stall inception in a transonic axial compressor. Casing plasma actuation has the potential to provide a robust and effective stall suppression device without compromising compressor performance. The objective of this work is to determine the optimum actuator location and actuation strength needed to suppress spike stall inception at transonic speeds without imposing a penalty on compressor performance. This is done through the implementation of an actuator model in a turbomachinery CFD code for simulations of a transonic research compressor rotor passage to measure the effectiveness of casing plasma actuation in delaying the tip clearance flow criteria that are believed to lead to the formation of spike disturbances. Results show that the casing plasma actuator should be positioned near the rotor leading edge so as to optimize the impact on the interface between the incoming and tip clearance flows as well as for practical consideration. Simulations also indicate that the required actuator strength is higher than that of typical SDBD actuators while still remaining within practical achievable limits. These results will form the basis for experimental validation of the concept in the corresponding research compressor rig in the near future.

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