Tonal noise constitutes the major part of the overall fan noise, especially the blade passing frequency (BPF) noise which is generally the most dominant component. This paper studies the BPF tonal noise of a centrifugal fan, including the blade noise, casing aerodynamic noise, and casing structural noise caused by the flow-induced casing vibration. Firstly, generation mechanism and propagation process of fan noise were discussed and the measured spectra of fan noise and casing vibration were presented. Secondly, a fully 3-D transient simulation of the internal flow field of the centrifugal fan was carried out by the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) approach. The results revealed that the flow interactions between the impeller and the volute casing caused periodic pressure fluctuations on the solid walls of the impeller and casing. This pressure fluctuation induces aerodynamic noise radiation as dipole sources, as well as structural vibration as force excitations. Thirdly, using the acoustic analogy theory, the aeroacoustic dipole sources on the casing and blade surface were extracted. The BPF casing and blade aerodynamic sound radiation were solved by the boundary element method (BEM) taking into account the scattering effect of the casing structure. Finally, the casing structural noise was studied. The casing forced vibration and sound radiation under the excitation of BPF pressure fluctuation were calculated by finite element method (FEM) and BEM, respectively. The result indicates that at the studied flow rate, the sound power levels of the casing aerodynamic noise, blade aerodynamic noise and casing structural noise are 103 dB, 91 dB and 79 dB with the reference sound power of 1×10−12 W, respectively.

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