In this paper we discuss the application of regenerative flow compressors (RFC) for low-pressure natural gas compression required by microturbine systems. A brief overview of fundamentals and the hypothesis of the operation of RFC is presented. A mathematical model to describe the complex three-dimensional corkscrew flow pattern in RFC is discussed. Governing equations for the blade and channel region are developed. A one-dimensional (1-D) performance prediction code for RFC based on governing equations and loss models is developed and performance results are compared with experimental data on a multistage RFC. Excellent agreement between theoretical and experimental results is observed, thus validating the proposed mathematical model.

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