In the present paper, the results from an extensive experimental characterization of the rotordynamic forces acting on a whirling three-bladed, tapered-hub, variable-pitch inducer are presented. The campaign has been conducted in the Cavitating Pump Rotordynamic Test Facility (CPRTF) at ALTA S.p.A. The forces acting on the impeller have been measured by means of a rotating dynamometer mounted just behind the inducer. The roles of the rotor whirl motion, flow rate, cavitating condition, and liquid temperature have been investigated. The analysis has been conducted by means of the classical rotordynamic approach together with a recent experimental technique, consisting in measuring the rotordynamic forces continuous behavior (spectra) as functions of the whirl excitation frequency. This technique allows for evaluating information from experiments more rapidly and accurately with regards to previous methods. Therefore, it is useful to better capture the complexity of the rotordynamic forces and assess their consequences on the stability of axial inducers.

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