A high-head three-bladed inducer has been equipped with pressure taps on the hub along the blade channels with the aim of more closely investigating the dynamics of cavitation-induced instabilities developing in the impeller flow. Spectral analysis of the pressure signals obtained from two sets of transducers mounted both in the stationary and rotating frames has allowed to characterize the nature, intensity, and interactions of the main flow instabilities detected in the experiments: subsynchronous rotating cavitation (RC), cavitation surge (CS), and a high-order axial surge oscillation. A dynamic model of the unsteady flow in the blade channels has been developed based on experimental data and on suitable descriptions of the mean flow and the oscillations of the cavitating volume. The model has been used for estimating at the inducer operating conditions of interest the intensity of the flow oscillations associated with the occurrence of the CS mode generated by RC in the inducer inlet.

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