As part of a European collaborative project, four high-speed compressors were tested to investigate the generic features of stall inception in aero-engine type compressors. Tests were run over the full speed range to identify the design and operating parameters that influence the stalling process. A study of data analysis techniques was also conducted in the hope of establishing early warning of stall. The work presented here is intended to relate the physical happenings in the compressor to the signals that would be received by an active stall control system. The measurements show a surprising range of stall-related disturbances and suggest that spike-type stall inception is a feature of low-speed operation while modal activity is clearest in the midspeed range. High-frequency disturbances were detected at both ends of the speed range and nonrotating stall, a new phenomenon, was detected in three out of the four compressors. The variety of the stalling patterns, and the ineffectiveness of the stall warning procedures, suggests that the ultimate goal of a flightworthy active control system remains some way off.

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