It is well recognised that the endwall regions of a compressor — in which the annulus wall flow interacts with the mainstream flow — have a major influence on its efficiency and surge margin. Despite many attempts over the years to predict the very complex flow patterns in the endwall regions, current compressor design methods still rely largely on empirical estimates of the aerodynamic losses and flow angle deviations in these regions. This paper describes a new phenomenological model of the key endwall flow phenomena treated in a circumferentially-averaged way. It starts from Hirsch and de Ruyck’s annulus wall boundary layer approach, but makes some important changes. The secondary vorticities arising from passage secondary flows and from tip clearance flows are calculated. Then the radial interchanges of momentum, energy and entropy arising from both diffusion and convection are estimated The model is incorporated into a streamline curvature program. The empirical blade force defect terms in the boundary layers are selected from cascade data. The effectiveness of the method is illustrated by comparing the predictions with experimental results on both low speed and high speed multistage compressors. It is found that the radial variation of flow parameters is quite well predicted, and so is the overall performance, except when significant endwall stall occurs.

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