In a two-part paper, key computed results from a set of first-of-a-kind numerical simulations on the unsteady interaction of axial compressor stator with upstream rotor wakes and tip leakage vortices are employed to elucidate their impact on the time-averaged performance of the stator. Detailed interrogation of the computed flowfield showed that for both wakes and tip leakage vortices, the impact of these mechanisms can be described on the same physical basis. Specifically, there are two generic mechanisms with significant influence on performance: reversible recovery of the energy in the wakes/tip vortices (beneficial) and the associated nontransitional boundary layer response (detrimental). In the presence of flow unsteadiness associated with rotor wakes and tip vortices, the efficiency of the stator under consideration is higher than that obtained using a mixed-out steady flow approximation. The effects of tip vortices and wakes are of comparable importance. The impact of stator interaction with upstream wakes and vortices depends on the following parameters: axial spacing, loading, and the frequency of wake fluctuations in the rotor frame. At reduced spacing, this impact becomes significant. The most important aspect of the tip vortex is the relative velocity defect and the associated relative total pressure defect, which is perceived by the stator in the same manner as a wake. In Part 2, the focus will be on the interaction of stator with the moving upstream rotor tip and streamwise vortices, the controlling parametric trends, and implications on design.

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