In this paper, the influence of nonuniform bleed extraction on the stability of an axial flow compressor is quantified. Nonuniformity can be caused by several geometric factors (for example, plenum chamber size or number of off-take ducts), and a range of configurations is examined experimentally in a single stage compressor. It is shown that nonuniform bleed leads to a circumferential distribution of flow coefficient and swirl angle at inlet to the downstream stage. The resultant distribution of rotor incidence causes stall to occur at a higher flow coefficient than if the same total bleed rate had been extracted uniformly around the circumference. A connection is made between the analysis of nonuniform bleed extraction and the familiar DCθ criterion used to characterize inlet total pressure distortion. The loss of operating range caused by the nonuniform inlet flow correlates with the peak sector-averaged bleed nonuniformity for all the bleed configurations tested.

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