In recent years, the demands of Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) customers to provide resource-efficient after market services have grown increasingly. One way to meet these requirements is by making use of predictive maintenance methods. These are ideas that involve the derivation of workscoping guidance by assessing and processing previously unused or undocumented service data. In this context a novel approach on predictive maintenance is presented in form of a performance-based classification method for high pressure compressor (HPC) airfoils. The procedure features machine learning algorithms that establish a relation between the airfoil geometry and the associated aerodynamic behavior and is hereby able to divide individual operating characteristics into a finite number of distinct aero-classes. By this means the introduced method not only provides a fast and simple way to assess piece part performance through geometrical data, but also facilitates the consideration of stage matching (axial as well as circumferential) in a simplified manner. It thus serves as prerequisite for an improved customary HPC performance workscope as well as for an automated optimization process for compressor buildup with used or repaired material that would be applicable in an MRO environment. The methods of machine learning that are used in the present work enable the formation of distinct groups of similar aero-performance by unsupervised (step 1) and supervised learning (step 2). The application of the overall classification procedure is shown exemplary on an artificially generated dataset based on real characteristics of a front and a rear rotor of a 10-stage axial compressor that contains both geometry as well as aerodynamic information. In step 1 of the investigation only the aerodynamic quantities in terms of multivariate functional data are used in order to benchmark different clustering algorithms and generate a foundation for a geometry-based aero-classification. Corresponding classifiers are created in step 2 by means of both, the k Nearest Neighbor and the linear Support Vector Machine algorithms. The methods’ fidelities are brought to the test with the attempt to recover the aero-based similarity classes solely by using normalized and reduced geometry data. This results in high classification probabilities of up to 96 % which is proven by using stratified k-fold cross-validation.

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