A single, isolated, test axial compressor rotor in a constant section annular duct is used for determination of off-design pressure losses. The results obtained are interpreted by means of loss coefficients and description of the flow field is deduced from a simplified actuator theory that takes into account pressure losses. Rotor stall limit is interpreted as that limit mass flow rate for which no continuous solution of the equations can be obtained. Unstable operations that take place for mass flow rates smaller than the stall limit are shown to be either rotating stall or wall separation, according to the shape of the downstream pressure profile. Experiments on the rotor confirm validity of these assumptions.

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