This paper describes the method to improve the stall margin of transonic axial flow compressor by controlling the boundary layer on the suction surface of the rotor blade tip through natural aspiration. Aspiration slots in the compressor blade are intended to energize the flow by increasing its momentum on the suction surface. This phenomenon of boundary layer control can delay the flow separation and hence results in enhancement of the stall margin of the compressor stage. Flow behavior with aspiration slots and its performance are evaluated using commercially available numerical software. Steady state RANS simulations with three dimensional implicit pressure-based coupled solver and turbulence model SST k-ω are used.

The effect of natural aspiration slot on the rotor blade performance is computed numerically. The main objective of the study was to identify the optimum location of the aspiration slot along the chord of the compressor on the rotor blade. The axial location chosen for the performance evaluations were 20%,40%,50%,60% and 70% of the rotor blade axial tip chord. By comparing the numerical simulation results with the steady state behavior in the absence of the aspirated slots, the optimized location of the aspiration slot that results in maximum stall improvement is identified. At the optimized location, natural aspiration slots on the rotor blade tip improved the stall margin with the minimum reduction in efficiency and stage pressure ratio when compared to base model. After critically understanding the performance with straight aspiration slots the compressor stage performance has enhanced further by orienting the aspiration slots. The numerical three dimensional results conclude an optimal improvement in the stall margin for the slots near the trailing edge of the rotor. The prediction shows that with the inclined aspiration slots at proper location it is possible to improve the stall margin of the compressor stage and also to restore the stage efficiency.

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