This paper reports on an examination of rotating stall in a low-speed three-stage axial flow compressor operating with various degrees of stage mismatch. The objective of this study was to simulate the mismatching that occurs in high-speed multistage compressors when operating near surge. The study of the stall zones involved the use of fast response measurement techniques. The study clearly shows how stages can operate in an axisymmetric fashion even when heavily stalled, since rotating stall inception requires the stall of more than one stage. The study also compares conditions required for full-span and part-span stall and suggests that the part-span stall structure is more relevant to high-speed multistage compressors.

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