In this paper the procedure and results of the aeromechanical optimization of a mixed-flow compressor impeller to be used in a 600 N micro gas turbine (MGT) are presented. Today’s unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) demand high thrust-to-weight ratios and low engine frontal area. This may be achieved using mixed-flow compressors. The initial impeller design was obtained using a 1-D turbomachinery layout tool. A multi-point optimization of the impeller aerodynamic performance was completed, followed by a mechanical optimization to reduce mechanical stresses in the impeller. A coupled aero-mechanical optimization was concluded with the purpose of increasing the choke limit and reducing stresses while conserving aero-performance. Subsequently, a modal analysis of the rotor was conducted to determine its vibrational characteristics. The optimization process was set up and controlled in an integrated environment that includes a 3-D Navier-Stokes flow solver and a 3-D finite element (FE) structural solver. The optimization process is based on the use of a database, an artificial neural network (ANN), a user-defined objective function and a genetic algorithm (GA). The overall optimization process achieved an increase in pressure ratio (total-to-total) of 30.6% compared to the initial design while the efficiency (isentropic total-to-total) was increased by 5% at design conditions. A decrease in the surge margin was experienced, but the final surge margin was still acceptable (12%). The choke limit was increased meaningfully. This was achieved while also decreasing the peak von Mises stress from far above the material yield strength to 30% below the yield limit.

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