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Measurements of Tip Vortex Characteristics and the Effect of an Anti-Cavitation Lip on a Model Kaplan Turbine Blade
KIMON ROUSSOPOULOS and PETER A. MONKEWITZ
DGM-IMHEF/Ecublens, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, CH-1015 Lausanne EPFL, Switzerland Received 7 May 1999; accepted in revised form 19 January 2000 Abstract. Motivated by the problem of cavitation erosion, the position and strength of the roll-up vortex on the suction side of a Kaplan-type turbine blade with various endings is investigated. Measurements are made on different models with simpliﬁed two-dimensional geometries using mainly particle image velocimetry. It is found that the greatest danger of cavitation erosion exists when the casing of the turbine is of the “semi-spherical” type, so that there is a large and closing clearance gap at the leading edge of the blade. Furthermore, the anti-cavitation lip used in this study is shown to be ineffective at increasing the distance of the vortex from the blade, although it does reduce the circulation of the vortex and presumably the danger of cavitation. Our measurements are found to be in good agreement with existing models for the position of the vortex when appropriately interpreted. Key words: turbomachinery, blade tip clearance ﬂow, tip vortex, anti-cavitation lip, particle image velocimetry.
1. Introduction The Kaplan hydraulic turbine is widely used in hydro-electric installations because it can function over a wide range of operating conditions with high efﬁciency. Kaplan (and bulb) hydraulic turbines are generally operated for maximum efﬁciency with the lowest possible outlet pressure consistent with avoiding large-scale cavitation on the blade suction surfaces. However, the core of the roll-up vortex that forms at the tip of the blade is a region of particularly low pressure where cavitation often does occur. If the cavitating vortex core approaches the blade of the turbine, then serious erosion of the blade can occur, causing loss of efﬁciency and an eventual need to shut down and dismantle the installation to replace lost blade material. It is therefore important to understand the trajectory and intensity of the tip vortex and the factors affecting it so that measures can be taken to prevent erosion. Axial turbomachinery rotor blades with a clearance gap between their blade tips and the turbine casing all have tip leakage ﬂows. In both compressors and turbines, the tip region ﬂow tends to include a pressure-driven, oblique leakage
K. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. MONKEWITZ
Table I. Geometry of the experimental blade section compared to the real blade. Parameter Full blade Chord used in experiments Blade thickness Present blade model L = 1025 mm 0.35L (plus 0.1L termination) 0.03L (almost constant at chord distances of 0.15–0.35L) 0.2L (constant section) 0.001–0.005L (0.003L for most tests) 4.5 × 105 Real installation (typ. values) L = 2–5 m
Blade length Gap thickness Reynolds number based on chord
0.03L (almost constant at chord distances of 0.15–0.35L) L (varying section) 0.0005–0.001L 3 × 107
ﬂow from the pressure side to the suction side of the blade, and the roll-up of a tip vortex in the corner bounded by the casing and the blade on the suction side. The leakage ﬂow causes a loss in stage efﬁciency due to an “unloading” of the pressure difference across the blade at the tip and the vortex blocking part of the ﬂow in the passage. Most previous studies [1–8] investigating tip vortex loci were in the context of gas turbines or compressors and were primarily concerned with reducing the accompanying losses. Our study concentrates on hydraulic turbomachinery and in particular the Kaplan turbine. In this application, the loss of efﬁciency is signiﬁcant but the further hazard of cavitation erosion of regions of the turbine blade can be critical. This paper presents results of an experimental program using PIV to study the position and strength of the roll-up vortex on the suction side of a stationary model turbine blade in a water channel. In our experiments, the blade’s cross-section does not vary along the span, the proportionate clearance gap is larger than in typical installations, and the Reynolds number is about 1/50 of the real case. Also, the consequences of relative blade/wall motion are neglected. This appears justiﬁed as the tip ﬂow is generally accepted to be pressure-driven [2, 4, 5] while greatly reducing the complexity of the experimental setup. Similarly, Coriolis effects are neglected. A comparison of the key parameters of our experimental setup with those of a full-sized Kaplan installation are given in Table I. The choice of such a simpliﬁed setup and unrealistic operating parameters was dictated by the desire to obtain reliable and detailed ﬂow measurements for the evaluation and calibration of numerical models. Despite the compromises, the main conclusions of the study are considered to remain valid also for more practical situations. The blade form used is based on a commercial design. We have investigated the uniform gap case and the case of a varying inlet gap typical of a “semi-spherical”
E XPERIMENTAL CONDITIONS All experiments presented here were performed with a ﬂow speed of 0. design water depth in working section 0.or propeller-type hydraulic turbines.4 m). however they gave no details of the effect on the tip leakage vortex. Our results are compared with the predictions of models published by previous researchers. the side walls and ﬂoor of the working section are of glass. and a return section. installation. 2. the commercial sponsor of the project. 2.2 m.2 m in the working section of the channel.2 m wide. The ﬂow is driven by a ship’s propeller in the return pipe. The drive is able to produce a speed of 0. WATER CHANNEL Our experiments were performed in the free-surface recirculating water channel of the EPFL’s ﬂuid mechanics laboratory. The conclusions are also applicable to other axial bulb. Experimental Facility and Diagnostic Methods 2. which was designed and built for this purpose. deformation .5 m/s and a depth of 0.1. a working section.. The main features of the channel are illustrated in Figure 1. pressure side and both sides of the blade end.2 m. Width of contraction and working section is 1. Booth and coworkers [6–8] considered the tip leakage with some “winglets” similar to our lip on the suction side.6 m/s in the working section with a water depth 0.2 m (a maximum physical depth of 0. as is the back wall of the tunnel so that optical access to the working section is possible from all directions except from upstream.5 m long and has a design depth of 0.2. 1. At higher speeds.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 121 Figure 1. The effect of the addition of a “lip” on the suction side of the blade in an effort to reduce the cavitation erosion by pushing the vortex away from the blade was also investigated at the suggestion of Sulzer Hydro Ltd. The working section is 1. An independently-mounted frame above the working section bore the model turbine blades and other equipment. Side view of EPFL-LMF water channel.2 m. The channel has three main sections: a ﬂow conditioning section with honeycomb and a 4 : 1 contraction.
based on a Kaplan blade tip section supplied by Sulzer Hydro Ltd. The (turbulent) boundary-layer displacement thickness in the working section adjacent to the blade models was estimated at 3 mm. but it was found that at 0. as illustrated in Figure 2. showing spherical and semi-spherical casings. Blade and casing arrangement in a Kaplan turbine.5 m/s the presence or absence of the free surface made a minimal difference to the blade tip ﬂow.3. developed at the EPFL Fluid Mechanics Laboratory.1% of the blade chord).122 K. leaving a small gap (typically 0.7 degrees to the free stream to simulate the operating conditions provided by Sulzer Hydro. MONKEWITZ Figure 2. The blades. are mounted on a hub and their tips come very close to the casing of the turbine. the former yielding greater efﬁciency but the latter allowing easier manufacture and maintenance. 2. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. The blade forms are inherently three-dimensional. The Kaplan blade tip proﬁle was “rolled ﬂat” and scaled to have a chord length of 1025 mm. the blades were aligned at an actual chord angle of 4. T HE BLADE MODELS Figure 2 illustrates the blade arrangement in a real Kaplan installation. In all cases. Of the resulting . The experiments reported in this paper were performed on blades with a uniform cross-section. of the free surface by waves around the blade was a cause for concern. of variable pitch. The casing can be spherical or semispherical.
MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 123 Figure 3. Truncated blade proﬁle used in experiments. . two-dimensional blade. compared to complete Kaplan blade. each with different terminations as follows: Blade A: Uniform cross-section and uniform clearance gap. while avoiding any signiﬁcant separation. Figure 4. This truncated blade was terminated with a short trailing edge designed by CFD such as to provide essentially the same loading on the ﬁrst 350 mm of the model as on the corresponding part of the complete blade proﬁle. only the leading 350 mm were used for the model blade section. The blade proﬁle and the relationship to the original full blade proﬁle is illustrated schematically in Figure 3. Blade B: As Blade A. denoted A. but with the addition of an “anti-cavitation lip” at the tip. The three blade endings used in the present study. The results reported in this paper are for three blades. B and C.
The limitations of this technique are discussed by many authors. 2. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. represents the case of a plain blade in a semi-spherical casing (see Figure 2). developed at the EPFL Fluid Mechanics Laboratory and shown schematically in Figure 5. a custom two-camera system.g.4. except that the clearance gap closes linearly from the leading edge. PARTICLE IMAGE VELOCIMETRY The main experimental measurement technique used during this study was planar Particle Image Velocimetry (PIV) which is now a well-established technique for determining instantaneous ﬂow velocity ﬁelds (see. Model B represents a blade in a fully spherical casing which has been ﬁtted with a lip on the suction side in the hope that this will displace the roll-up of the vortex further from the blade and thus offer some protection from cavitation erosion. For the present study.124 K. only the particularities of our PIV system are brieﬂy summarized. ﬁnally. while model B was realized with a plastic plate screwed onto the tip of blade A. Model A represents a plain blade. The blades’ suction sides and the anti-cavitation lip were painted black to reduce laser reﬂection.. unless otherwise stated. e. e. has been used. which was ﬁtted with pressure taps on both sides and on the base (see below). experiments were performed with a 3 mm gap in which it was possible to make PIV measurements. 10]) from the displacement of seed particles in the plane of a laser sheet obtained from two consecutive images (superimposed or recorded separately). and are not repeated here. The linear closure is a good approximation of the actual gap variation. The geometry of the three blades are illustrated in Figure 4. MONKEWITZ Figure 5. The two light-intensiﬁed digital cameras (model “4Quick05” of Stanford Computer Optics with a cooled CCD array of 768 by 512 pixels) are arranged in such a way .g. Model C. Blade C: As Blade A. [9. [9–11]. ﬁtted into a fully spherical casing (see Figure 2). In the following.. Arrangement of CCD cameras and optics in the LMF PIV system. see. Realistic clearance gaps between the truncated blade tip and the channel ﬂoor are of the order of 1 mm on the scale of the original full-length proﬁle and were used for some measurements. but. Models A and C were machined in a plastic modeling compound similar to nylon.
particles naturally tend to move out of the illuminated region during the time delay between the two PIV images. The misalignment could then be removed from the PIV results by vector subtraction. The seeding density turned out to be a critical parameter since. thus leading to an unacceptable signal to noise ratio (image contrast). however. both the laser sheet and the line of sight of the camera passed through water over a large distance. As the prism rotated. The calibration consisted of recording an image with both cameras simultaneously and of computing the offset vectors across the ﬁeld by cross-correlation. With our system it was possible to achieve a sub-pixel alignment accuracy. a low particle density causes an unacceptably high . i. a 210 mm lens for work through the channel ﬂoor and a 450 mm lens for maximum magniﬁcation when working from the end wall of the facility) and split thereafter by a 50% beam splitter (see also ). commercially-available. For seeding. Therefore. each camera records one image of the pair needed for the determination of the seed particle displacement ﬁeld with an arbitrary time delay between them.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 125 as to receive the same image. a rotating octagonal prism was used as the ﬁnal element of the optical system to move the laser sheet in the main ﬂow direction. the laser sheet swept downstream through a distance of 10 mm and “jumped” back upstream as the next face of the prism was struck. it was found that a misalignment of 2–3 pixels was tolerable as it could be compensated for by calibration with an accuracy that did not signiﬁcantly degrade the displacement measurements. it was necessary to operate in most cases near the maximum gain of the cameras and with the longest possible exposure times (of the order of 1 ms with time delays of the same order). For the experiments reported in this study. light scattered from particles in the laser sheet to illuminate other particles in the line of sight of the camera. In this situation. A difﬁculty arose as most of our PIV measurements were aimed at measuring secondary ﬂows in a plane normal to the main ﬂow (laser sheet normal to the main ﬂow). The cameras were controlled by a PC and images were transferred to the PC by two dedicated frame grabbers.3 times that of water. two objective lenses were used. One drawback of the two-camera arrangement is. This caused.e. Another advantage of the electronic shutters is the possibility of using a continuous wave laser for the light sheet. On the other hand. This is. and their density 1. was used to create the laser sheet with a system of mirrors and lenses mounted on traverses permitting adjustment of the orientation (vertical or horizontal) and thickness of the sheet. Their mean diameter was 20 µm. very time-consuming and the alignment procedure must be repeated daily. such that directional ambiguity and other problems of the double-exposure technique are avoided. focussed onto their image intensiﬁers by a single objective lens (for the present study. of course. In practice. operated at a power of 3 W. in the sheet-normal direction. A continuous wave argon-ion laser. in our apparatus. As the two image intensiﬁers can be operated independently as electronically controlled shutters. at too high a particle density. silver-coated spherical particles (sold as paint additive) were used. the need for careful alignment of the cameras and mirrors.
In most cases. and a sensitivity of 1 V/mBar. typically 5% of the vectors were identiﬁed by the software as false vectors (visible. P RESSURE MEASUREMENTS The blade model A was equipped with 84 pressure taps of 0. all pressure measurements were made relative to a reference pressure tap on the pressure side.g. 2. corresponding to arrays of 23 by 15 velocity vectors. Finally. Visiﬂow permits the replacement of false vectors by vectors corresponding to the second or third peak in the cross-correlation or by a weighted average of surrounding vectors. and further by plastic tubing to one of two 12-channel commutators of “scanivalve” type. to spread particle images over several pixels. without windowing of the initial images. [9–11] and the discussion above) are met by our setup. The taps were connected via ﬁne steel tubes through the blade interior to its top. e. above the water surface. which further reduces the statistical error in regions of steady ﬂow. the present studies were performed with typically 4– 5 particles in an interrogation window.. . 100 mm from the leading edge and 10 mm above the bottom of the blade. all the results presented here are averages over several vector ﬁelds. Visiﬂow was also used to compute the vorticity ﬁeld from groups of nine vectors (vector where vorticity is estimated plus its eight neighbors). since the key requirements for sub-pixel accuracy (see. Furthermore. Regarding the accuracy of the valid vectors. when necessary. e. The images were analyzed using the commercial “Visiﬂow” software marketed by AEA Technology. Standard PIV analysis. interrogation windows of 64 by 64 pixels with a 50% overlap were used. inadequate illumination. the camera was deliberately defocussed. In order to satisfy the requirement  of a sufﬁcient ratio between particle image and pixel size. After careful purging of the system to avoid errors due to hydrostatic pressure differences. at the edges of Figure 8) as a result of too few particles in the interrogation window.g. In our measurements.. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. The option of using higher correlation peaks drastically reduced the number of interpolations necessary to replace false vectors to less than 1% in most cases.5. ELECTORR model GA 76 with a pressure range of ±5 mBar. the accuracy of the displacement computation for a single interrogation window is estimated as being about 0. Therefore. On this basis. etc. pressures were measured with a single differential high-precision transducer. which is at the lower limit of the particle density recommended by Keane and Adrian  for cross-correlation analysis. particles moving out of the laser sheet despite its motion with the main ﬂow. was performed using cross-correlation of corresponding interrogation windows. where the peak of the cross-correlations was located by a Gaussian ﬁt. To reduce errors resulting from drift. MONKEWITZ number of erroneous displacement vectors (false correlations) and inaccuracies of the valid vectors.5 mm diameter around the blade and on its base.25 times the displacement corresponding to a pixel. the error of our PIV measurements is estimated as being about ±5% of the largest velocity in the ﬁeld.126 K.
except to verify that the observed vortex position was in agreement with the PIV measurements. P RESSURE MEASUREMENTS Figure 6 shows the mean pressure distribution around the blade midspan. as typically found on real turbine blades. 3. notably by means of ﬂuorescene dye leaked into the tip vortex from the leading edge corner of the blade tip and illuminated by the laser sheet. y indicates elevation above the channel ﬂoor and z indicates position along the chord line measured from the blade’s leading edge. Chord-wise pressure proﬁle at mid-span of blade A (relative to the reference point on the pressure side). a coordinate system is adopted where x is oriented in the direction away from the suction side of the blade.0.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 127 Figure 6.6. but rather to increase the qualitative understanding of the vortex behavior. From Figure 6 it appears that. the blade has a nearly constant cp loading of about 1. F LOW VISUALIZATION Flow visualization experiments were carried out. This allowed the trajectory of the tip vortex as well as its degree of unsteadiness to be captured on video. Since all pressure measurements were made relative to a reference pressure tap on the pressure side (see the previous section). the cp values are close to zero on the pressure side. The visualization was not used for quantitative measurements. away from the leading edge (in the region 100–300 mm from the leading edge).1. . 2. Experimental Results In presenting the results. 3. while Figure 7 shows the pressure distribution over the blade height on the pressure and suction sides at a distance of 200 mm from the leading edge.
The continuation of Figures 8 and 9 in the proﬁle midsection (140 mm ≤ z < 300 mm) is shown in Figures 10 and 11. Each of these ﬁgures was obtained by averaging over three . It is noted that the gap pressure at the tap close to the pressure side is lower than that near the suction side. Measurements were made with the 210 mm objective lens through the channel ﬂoor. including the leading edge. resulting in a vector ﬁeld of 49 × 33 vectors. with a thickness of 0. some pressure recovery is clearly obtained along the gap. An interesting feature of the distribution of Figure 7 are the pressure values at the two pressure taps on the end face of the blade (in the gap) which are included in the diagram at zero height. a small recirculation region under the blade was clearly seen in a ﬂow visualization video. was placed in the middle of the gap. It is possible that this localized region of very low pressure. This is the consequence of a separation that occurs at the corner with later reattachment. 3. respectively.128 K. may be critical for cavitation formation. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P.2. Figure 7 demonstrates that there is practically no pressure unloading until the lowest 5 mm of the blade. The analysis was performed with a 32 by 32 pixel interrogation window. A laser sheet. which was not investigated further. on which the outline of the proﬁle is shown for better orientation (note that for these ﬁgures the coordinate x is measured from the chord line of the proﬁle). Span-wise pressure proﬁle at 200 mm from leading edge of blade A (relative to the reference point on the pressure side). Beyond this recirculation region. F LOW IN THE GAP PIV measurements made in the gap between the blades and the wall are shown in Figures 8 to 11. It therefore appears that a “vena contracta” forms at this corner with locally higher speed and lower pressure in the gap (see also ). with and without the presence of the anti-cavitation lip. MONKEWITZ Figure 7. Figures 8 and 9 show the ﬂow ﬁeld in the region 0 ≤ z < 160 mm. These measurements were all made with a gap of 3 mm between the blade and the glass ﬂoor.3 mm.
.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 129 Figure 8. Figure 9. Flow in mid-gap plane in the leading edge region of blade A with a 3 mm gap. Flow in mid-gap plane in the leading edge region of blade B with a 3 mm gap.
. Figure 11.130 K. MONKEWITZ Figure 10. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. Flow in mid-gap plane in the midsection of blade A with a 3 mm gap. Flow in mid-gap plane in the midsection of blade B with a 3 mm gap.
M EASUREMENTS OF THE SECONDARY TIP CLEARANCE VORTEX FLOW Measurements were made of the tip vortex with the three blade conﬁgurations. and moves away from the blade with increasing downstream distance. except in the immediate neighborhood of the leading edge) come from the same reservoir (along different streamlines) and are at the same pressure. we found no measurable (consistent) change in ﬂuid velocity in the gap center-plane with and without the lip but. no attempt has been made to replace these error vectors. estimated at ±0. This suggests. “B” and “C” at distances of 78. 3. out of the horizontal measuring plane. the ﬂow appears to be accelerated under the blade. Wadia  computed a 10% reduction in leakage ﬂow with a similar lip at comparable conditions. Since the ﬂow was essentially steady. we cannot draw any deﬁnitive conclusion regarding the total leakage ﬂow. with additional measurements at 320 mm in the conﬁguration “C”. On the suction side. beyond which we ﬁnd again the unperturbed channel-ﬂoor boundary layer. and surprisingly also independent of the presence of the anti-cavitation lip. The incipient ﬂow (from left to right) is clearly identiﬁed far from the blade. on the other hand. At the separation line ﬂuid that has ﬂowed under the blade is turned upwards. This would be expected from inviscid theory as the gap jet and the external ﬂow on the suction side (with a velocity near the free stream velocity for the present lightly loaded blade.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 131 separate PIV measurements. In the center-plane of the gap and in the jet emerging from it. since illumination is insufﬁcient there. the total ﬂow velocity is found to be within 5% of the free stream velocity (0. we observe that the ﬂows are remarkably similar. Looking more closely at the magnitude of the velocity vectors. the presence of the anti-cavitation lip appears to have remarkably little effect on the position of the separation line. was obtained. A high incidence of error vectors can be seen at the left and right-hand sides of the ﬁgures. equal to 45–50 degrees. eventually to roll up into the tip clearance vortex.02 m/s. The turn angle is found to be essentially uniform over the gap. 180 and 250 mm from the leading edge.3 m/s away from the blade on the pressure side to a velocity of 0. In comparing Figures 8 and 9. The laser optics was .3.5 m/s). In the plane of measurement. that the maximum velocity in the gap and at its exit is little affected by viscous effects. These regions coincide with the edges of the laser sheet and. from about 0. As for the ﬂow velocity in the gap. since sufﬁciently accurate velocity proﬁles across the gap could not be obtained with the PIV technique.5 m/s under the blade. 128. The separation line starts at the leading edge of the blade. a good accuracy of the valid vectors in the central portion of the ﬁgures. “A”. The lower ﬂow speed on the pressure side is due to the laser sheet being in the channel-ﬂoor boundary layer. apart from some variability in the location of the separation line beyond the suction side of the blade. the ﬂow turns under the blade very close to the pressure side of the blade (on the ﬁgures. the lower proﬁle contour). the ﬂow clearly continues past the edge of the blade to a separation line.
onto the channel ﬂoor as in Figure 12. 3. a diaphragm of 65 mm diameter was placed on the main lens. To obtain a sufﬁcient depth of focus and sharpness. at the particular z-position. The instantaneous velocity vectors are estimated to be accurate to within 0. The accuracy of the measured vortex-center position is approximately ±2 mm.4. all with a 3 mm gap. resulting in 23 × 15 velocity vectors. PIV analysis was performed with square interrogation windows of 64 by 64 pixels and 50% overlap. The camera axis was aligned within 2 degrees to the local mean ﬂow direction within the ﬁeld of view such as to minimize the contribution to the particle displacements from misalignment. can now be estimated from its measured position at different z-stations. The reader is reminded here that the coordinate origin is the vertical projection of the blade suction side (not including the anti-cavitation lip!). The exposure time and the delay between the two cameras were 2 ms (except for the measurements of proﬁle C where the secondary ﬂow is of greater magnitude and exposures and delays of 1 ms were used). shown in Figure 13. Furthermore.008 m/s for proﬁle C).132 K.004 m/s (0.8 m through air (taking refraction at the air-glass-water interface into account). At the typical observing distance equivalent to 3. Examples at 180 mm from the leading edge are shown in Figure 12 for the three blades tested. T RAJECTORY OF THE VORTEX CENTER The trajectory of the vortex center. The primary results of the measurements of the clearance vortex are a series of mean secondary velocity and vorticity ﬁelds. deﬁned as the center of the concentric vorticity contours. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. A target grid was used both to compute the scale factors for the analysis and to determine the exact measurement position with respect to the blade and the channel ﬂoor. In these plots the clearance vortex is well in evidence and the vorticity maximum is seen to correspond well to the apparent center of the vortex motion on the velocity plots. The camera was positioned to record the particle image through the glass window at the end of the water channel with the objective lens of 450 mm focal length. The ﬁeld of view was close to the ﬂoor of the channel and the edge of the blade without imaging directly the laser reﬂections from these surfaces. The data for . at least 10 vector ﬁelds were acquired in each position and the results averaged in order to provide a comparison with mean velocity ﬁelds obtained from Reynolds-averaged numerical models. The speed of the rotating prism was adjusted to traverse the laser sheet in the z-direction at a speed slightly slower than the main ﬂow velocity in accordance with the slower axial ﬂow in the vortex. the ﬁeld of vision was approximately 72 mm by 48 mm. MONKEWITZ arranged to give a vertical sheet of 3 mm thickness normal to the main ﬂow in the channel. Note that the x-axis for these secondary ﬂow measurements is deﬁned differently than for Figures 8 to 11: it is roughly perpendicular to the local blade surface and its origin is conveniently chosen on the suction surface of the blade. as in a “body-ﬁtted” coordinate system.
. B (center) and C (bottom). Examples of PIV measurements of secondary ﬂow and derived vorticity at 180 mm from the leading edge of blades A (top).MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 133 Figure 12. all with a 3 mm gap.
both in the individual PIV measurements and during ﬂow visualization. the much stronger vortex (see Figure 12) is always closer to the blade than for blades A and B. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. the blade with and without the anti-cavitation lip (blades A and B) is again not signiﬁcantly different. Figure 14 reveals that the mean ﬂow (as in Figure 12) . Figure 14 shows the instantaneous centers of the vortex at 20 different times (from 20 randomlytimed PIV images. some centers coincide). However. B and C with a 3 mm gap. Mean position of vortex centers at different distances from the leading edge. 3. measured at 180 mm from the leading edge of blade A.134 K. The variability is signiﬁcant as the vortex center moves approximately 15 mm horizontally and 8 mm vertically. MONKEWITZ Figure 13. for the substantially different blade C. which indicates that the number of vector ﬁelds (≥ 10) we chose to determine the mean velocity ﬁeld is sufﬁcient. for blades A. The vortex is seen to move signiﬁcantly about this mean position. The mean of these centers is seen to coincide very closely with the center of the vortex in the mean image.5. U NSTEADINESS OF THE VORTEX POSITION It is important to note that the results presented above are for the mean vortex position.
we do not have measurements over the whole cross-section of the vortex. since. which is the only parameter considered that is preserved in the process of averaging over a number of ﬂow realizations. is not necessarily representative of the actual ﬂow that occurs. and it seems reasonable to expect that a vortex with greater circulation would carry a greater risk of cavitation. 3. equivalently. The instantaneous vortex is generally smaller and more intense than the mean vortex: in this data series the mean of the peak vorticities of the individual realizations is three times the peak vorticity of the mean vortex (the variability of the peak vorticity between realizations is ±30%). An approximate method was devised based on completing the missing parts of the vorticity distribution by interpolation.e. S TRENGTH OF THE VORTEX The risk of damage to the turbine blade from cavitation is inﬂuenced by both the position of the vortex and its intensity. i.6. The factor that most strongly inﬂuences cavitation is the minimum pressure in the vortex. however. and the total circulation around the vortex. A particular problem arises. the cross-sectional area of the vortex. Twenty instantaneous vortex center positions and their geometric mean at 180 mm from the leading edge of blade A with a 3 mm gap. on the missing arc length over which velocity needs to be integrated. Table II shows the estimated circulation of the vortex at different distances from the leading edge for the three blades considered in the study. The intensity of the vortex can be quantiﬁed by many parameters. the blade and the anti-cavitation lip.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 135 Figure 14. Also shown is the percentage of this . by making reasonable assumptions on the vortex shape and vorticity distribution or. in many cases. We chose to quantify the strength of the vortex by its total circulation. because it was not possible to make measurements close to the channel ﬂoor. it is also the least affected by random errors. which is not a simple function of any of these quantities. Since it is an integral parameter. including: the peak vorticity of the vortex.
7.8 5.8 10 10 16 – 40 24 27 15 – Blade B Estimated % of circulation circulation (×103 m2 s−1 ) extrapolated 4. just after the lip reaches its full width. Blade A Estimated % of circulation circulation (×103 m2 s−1 ) extrapolated 5. Measurements are reported at 180 mm from the leading edge for four different gap thicknesses. E FFECTS OF VARYING GAP THICKNESS To complete the study. since the conﬁguration near the leading edge of this blade tip is similar to that of half a delta wing which is known to produce a powerful vortex. but it should be borne in mind that the position uncertainty is ±2 mm so that the actual displacements may be close to zero. this clearly makes conﬁguration C the most prone to cavitation damage.2 – 59 27 5 11 – Blade C Estimated % of circulation circulation (×103 m2 s−1 ) extrapolated 4. From this table. the effect of varying the thickness of the gap between the blade and the channel ﬂoor was investigated for selected cases. It reveals no clear trend for the displacement of the vortex core as the gap thickness is changed. while the corresponding position of the vortex centers are shown in Figure 15. Estimated circulation for the three blades with a 3 mm gap.0 9. that the anti-cavitation lip . at positions where the anti-cavitation lip is present.3 23 43 39 11 53 32 11 14 Distance from leading edge (mm) 78 128 180 250 320 circulation which has been estimated by interpolation. however. In terms of implications for blade damage. These differences are large compared with the expected errors and so are considered reliable.136 K. In view of the greater gap thickness between the leading edge and this point this is not surprising. and at 180 and 250 mm from the leading edge it is 2–3 times as strong. MONKEWITZ Table II. 3. but further back. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. we note that the anti-cavitation lip of section B does seem to give a worthwhile reduction in the intensity of the vortex. Combined with the observed relative closeness of the vortex to the blade.2 7. conﬁguration B has signiﬁcantly lower circulation (50% lower at 180 mm. In the case of proﬁle C.3 9. the higher this ﬁgure the less reliable the circulation estimate. It is worth noting. at various distances from the leading edge. it is seen that the conﬁgurations A and B have similar circulation in the leading-edge region of the proﬁle. and 33% lower at 250 mm). The estimated vortex circulations for the proﬁles A and B are listed in Table III. the circulation is generally greater than for proﬁles A or B. and so is probably effective in reducing cavitation erosion even though the vortex position is not changed. with all other experimental parameters the same as above.
brieﬂy discussed below.36 4.4 0 Figure 15. The position of the separation line dividing the ﬂuid emerging from the gap from the free ﬂow.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 137 Table III.. (blade B) does seem to result in a consistent outward displacement of the vortex core by a distance of 3±1 mm as the gap is increased from 1 to 4 mm. the vortex center towards the blade. Guided by the model of Song and Martinez-Sanchez . Similar arguments can be made for . again.93 % of circulation extrapolated 50 33.1 0 4.g.6 27 5. e.35 3. As the separation line roughly ﬁxes the position of the outer extremity of the vortex and the increased quantity of ﬂuid rolled up into the vortex should increase its size (see. the model of ). Mean vortex circulation at 180 mm from the leading edge for blades A and B and different gap thicknesses from 1 to 4 mm.3 9.7 5. two mechanisms could be responsible for a displacement of the vortex as the gap thickness is varied. Mean vortex center positions at 180 mm from leading edges of blades A and B versus gap thickness. As the gap increases. which is expected to shift the separation line towards the blade and. the center would be expected to move towards the blade. viscous forces tend to reduce the ﬂow velocity in the gap as it diminishes. i. on the other hand. is likely to be little affected by the gap thickness (analogous to the small effect of the anti-cavitation lip.98 3.1 0. Proﬁle – gap thickness (mm) A-1 A-2 A-3 A-4 B-1 B-2 B-3 B-4 Estimated circulation (×103 m2 s−1 ) 3 7 10.e. On the other hand. the gap width). the ﬂow rate through the gap is expected to increase.
the mean circulation in case B is signiﬁcantly lower (typically half) than for blade A.g. The following comparison with our experimental results will. however. In this study. but comparisons will be made with their empirical . Chen et al. Since the gap width did not have a signiﬁcant effect on the maximum velocity in the gap (see Figures 8–11). performed a numerical computation. case B-3 of Table III with “A-1. Regarding the evolution of vortex circulation with gap thickness. with the distance of the vortex core from the blade appearing to reach a maximum for a gap thickness of around 3 mm. however. suction side and camber line.  and Song and Martinez-Sanchez .8. versus distance from leading edge z∗ . compared with models of Chen et al. The lack of a clear trend in Figure 15 suggests that both mechanisms may be active under our experimental conditions. no deﬁnitive reason for this strong effect can be offered. C OMPARISON WITH EXISTING MODELS A number of studies have been concerned with the locus of tip clearance vortices in turbomachinery. based on a simple model of the ﬂow. one would a priori expect it to increase monotonically with gap thickness up to the point where the gap becomes so large that the vortex asymptotes to a wing-tip vortex. an increase of circulation has only been observed up to a gap of 3 mm.138 K. This is. the height of the vortex above the ﬂoor. MONKEWITZ Figure 16. as the proportion of vorticity (which may be strongly dependent on geometry) not rolled into the vortex is not considered. the average between A-1 and A-2). however. curious to note that when compared on the basis of equal gap aspect ratio (gap width to thickness. It is.5”.. be focussed on the recent work by Chen et al. too simplistic. In all cases. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P.  and by Song and Martinez-Sanchez . beyond which the circulation saturates or even shows a slight decrease. 3. e. Blade A with a 3 mm gap. the circulations measured for blades A and B become rather similar (compare. Measured non-dimensional mean vortex distance x ∗ from blade pressure side. The effect of gap width (normal to the camber line) on mean circulation is evidenced by the comparison between blades A and B in Table II for a ﬁxed gap thickness of 3 mm and in Table III for a varying gap.
For comparison. z is the distance along the blade from the leading edge. and cp the mean non-dimensional pressure loading of the blade. The model of Song and Martinez-Sanchez. Their model gives useful insight into the mechanisms behind the vortex formation (and what might affect it) although their analytical predictions of circulation are. which is in good agreement with data from earlier publications. compared with relation of Chen et al. In both models the assumption of lightly-loaded thin blades is made. our data are made non-dimensional according to Chen et al. in poor quantitative agreement with our results (see Section 4).: x∗ = x .46z∗ . In Figure 16 the vortex trajectories predicted by Chen et al.  (solid line). the distance of the vortex from the blade is in fact of the same order as the thickness of the blade. on the other hand. For this reason. 2 where x is the distance from the blade. and our measurements of vortex location for blade A with a 3 mm clearance gap are plotted at four streamwise . and Song and Martinez-Sanchez. δ is the clearance gap thickness. found that the distance x of the vortex from the blade is given by the simple proportionality x ∗ = 0. model for the distance of the vortex from the blade. is complex and only some of its features will be brieﬂy discussed in Section 4. δ z∗ = z δ cp . at ﬁrst sight. Our blade is moderately loaded ( cp ≈ 1. Measured non-dimensional mean vortex distance from pressure side of blades A and B with gaps of 1–4 mm. Song and Martinez-Sanchez offer an analytical model for the position of the tip clearance vortex.0) but is not thin. the deﬁnition of the vortex distance from the blade poses a problem. The three obvious possibilities are distance from the suction side. distance from the camber line (blade mid-plane). Chen et al.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 139 Figure 17. based on the assumptions that the ﬂow is inviscid and that the ﬂow under the blade is a pressure-driven “sheet jet”. Using mainly empirical arguments. and distance from the pressure side.
except for the speculation that viscous effects may play an important role. with the vortex distance measured from the pressure side. while a large fraction may interact “destructively” with the streamwise vorticity of opposite sign in the casing boundary layer. The agreement appears quite good and. The increase of circulation with downstream distance is seen to be similar for the model and the measurements. The model of Song and Martinez-Sanchez  also yields the circulation of the vortex (based on their assumption on the vorticity distribution) which is compared in Figure 18 with the present mean circulation measurements for blade A at different streamwise positions. positions. MONKEWITZ Figure 18. save for its role in determining the blade loading. and the effect of an anti-cavitation “lip” has . Measurements have been made of the position and strength of the vortex at a number of conditions. in comparison with the ﬁt of Chen et al. may end up in the concentrated tip vortex. It is clearly seen from this ﬁgure that the best agreement is obtained when the coordinate x in the models is measured from the pressure side. Comparison of measured mean vortex circulation for blade A with model prediction of Song and Martinez-Sanchez . . This appears reasonable since in both models the position of the suction side is irrelevant. i. Figure 17 then shows all our vortex trajectories for proﬁles A and B. our data fall well within the scatter of previous measurements compiled in ﬁgure 5 of Chen et al. No conclusive explanation for this large discrepancy can be offered. For instance. only a fraction of the streamwise vorticity. equally good for the blades with and without anti-cavitation lip. . In fact.e. Discussion and Conclusions The tip clearance vortex and other aspects of the ﬂow in the tip region of a simpliﬁed hydraulic turbine blade model have been experimentally investigated in a water channel. but the latter fall below the model prediction by a factor 3–4. the boundary layer on the bottom wall of the water channel in the present experiment. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. remarkably. generated on the blade end-face within the gap. including those measured at different gap thicknesses.140 K. 4.
As already mentioned in the introduction and summarized in Table I. In PIV measurements and in ﬂow visualizations. but virtually no data are available on real casing boundary layers. are relatively far from any real case. blade contour shown as straight line). on the other hand. This view is supported by the fair agreement of the measurements with inviscid models. the vortex actually “climbs” onto the top of the lip and. relative motion between the blade and the casing. Mean vortex position with and without anti-cavitation lip (plan view. at which no cavitation occurred. for some distance. it was seen that. at a distance from the blade which is slightly smaller than the mean distance . the Reynolds number in our experiment was two orders of magnitude lower than in real turbines. one may argue that it was sufﬁciently high for the ﬂow around the blade and the vortex to be fully turbulent and that a further increase in Reynolds number usually results in little overall change of vortex ﬂow patterns. the tip clearance in most experiments was three times the 1 mm required for geometric similarity with a real Kaplan turbine. Besides providing a useful data base of tip vortex ﬂows. It is reiterated here that the present experimental conditions. although it did usefully reduce the strength of the vortex. In addition. remains clearly centered above the lip. been investigated. the boundary layer on the channel ﬂoor may not correspond to a real case.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 141 Figure 19. The neglect of the relative motion between the blade and the casing. Also. It had been anticipated that the lip would move the vortex outwards by an amount comparable to the width of the lip (25 mm for our model). Regarding the model Reynolds number. Finally. the main conclusion of this study is that the anti-cavitation lip tested did not have the expected effect of signiﬁcantly displacing the tip clearance vortex away from the blade. have been neglected. as well as span-wise variations in blade proﬁle and loading. The most important of these deviations from a full-size installation are the Reynolds number mismatch and the lack of relative motion between the blade and casing. wall curvature and ﬂow rotation effects. is a standard assumption in tip ﬂow modeling. as a simple estimate of the contributions of pressure difference and relative wall motion to the gap ﬂow indicates that the latter is negligible in most cases. but the measurements revealed a barely signiﬁcant average vortex displacement of about 3 mm. at the lip leading edge.
as illustrated in Figure 20. the distance of the mean vortex center from the blade suction side becomes larger than the lip width and the vortex trajectory approaches the no-lip trajectory. the ﬂow angle. This model concept is fully consistent with our measurements shown in Figures 8–11: that is. the separation line must bisect the directions of the “sheet jet” and the free stream. and parallel to the casing wall (water channel ﬂoor) must be equal and. The implication of the model  is that the anti-cavitation lip can only be successful in moving the vortex further away from the blade if it extends beyond the separation line on the suction side of the casing wall. the “sheet jet” is turned away from the wall and is rolled up into the tip vortex centered one vortex radius from the separation line towards the blade. The ﬂuid emerging from the gap in the form of a “sheet jet” then interacts at a separation line with the free stream. without any consideration of the suction-side geometry. the velocity components in a plane normal to this separation line. which predicts the vortex position relative to the pressure side of the blade. A possible explanation for this behavior can be given on the basis of the model by Song and Martinez-Sanchez .142 K. the jet emerging from under the blade remains largely unaffected by the presence of the lip. MONKEWITZ Figure 20. This is consistent with the hypothesis that the velocity magnitude under the blade is that of the free stream (inviscid ﬂow) and that the velocity in the direction normal to the blade. Hence. since the velocity magnitudes on both sides are also equal. as shown in Figure 19. as suggested in Figure 21. Sketch of vortex roll-up model due to Song and Sanchez-Martinez . Only further downstream.e. At the separation line. i. Only in this case could one expect a new separation line and a new vortex . ROUSSOPOULOS AND P. is determined by the pressure difference across the blade. since the anti-cavitation lip of blade B does not extend to the separation line originating from the blade leading edge. for the same blade proﬁle without lip.
Many of the results reported in this paper were obtained during the semester and diploma projects carried out by Mr. M. Keck. on the other hand. appear questionable.MEASUREMENTS OF TIP VORTEX CHARACTERISTICS 143 Figure 21. E.E.. ASME Journal of Turbomachinery 113 (1991) 260–260. Tan. Sebestyen. Casey and others at Sulzer for their constant encouragement.. this study would not have been possible. Bruno Granier and other students: without their help and the expertise of the LMF technician team. For a “semi-spherical” casing. . starting at the point where the gap becomes constant. Similarity analysis of compressor tip clearance ﬂow. Sketch of vortex roll-up with large anti-cavitation lip (plan view). A. F.1 is gratefully acknowledged. H. respectively.M. Chen. Greitzer. but their ﬁnal trajectory would be expected to be determined by the new separation line. The two vortices originating from the blade and the lip leading edges. to start at the lip leading edge. and Marble. The authors also thank Drs. C. P. Drtina. References 1. and the Swiss Federal Commission for Technology and Innovation (CTI) under grant 2905. may still interact and eventually coalesce. the experiments have shown that the greatest danger of cavitation occurs in the region of the closing gap such that the beneﬁts of a wider lip. G.. resulting in a greatly lowered risk of cavitation in the case of a “spherical” casing.T.S. Acknowledgements The ﬁnancial support by Sulzer Hydro Ltd.
A..M. Keane. R.A. 7. Measurement and prediction of tip clearance ﬂow in linear turbine cascades. T.P. C. Optimization of particle image velocimeters: II. Particle-imaging techniques for experimental ﬂuid mechanics. S.. M.R. Adrian. F... N.A. Tip leakage ﬂow in axial compressors.. Experiments in Fluids 10 (1991) 181–193. ASME Journal of Engineering for Power 104 (1982) 154–161. Rotordynamic effects due to turbine leakage ﬂow: Part I. 11. 9. 12. Digital particle image velocimetry. MONKEWITZ Song. and Martinez-Sanchez.. P.K.J. H. Hodson. Dodge. Wadia.J. Heyes. ASME Journal of Turbomachinery 113 (1991) 252–259. A.G..E.C.. 8. and Adrian. A two-camera image acquisition system for DPIV. and Dailey. R. Storer.C. ROUSSOPOULOS AND P.. Heyes. 6. H.G.. The effect of blade tip geometry on the tip leakage ﬂow in axial turbine cascades. Multiple pulsed systems. ASME Journal of Engineering for Power 104 (1982) 161–169.144 2. Blade scale effects. and Hodson.. Rotor-tip leakage: Part I Basic methodology. J. Willert. 5. M. ASME Journal of Turbomachinery 114 (1992) 643–651. K. 4.D. Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics 23 (1991) 261–304. ASME Journal of Turbomachinery 119 (1997) 695–703. G.J.P. 3. AIAA Journal 23 (1985) 1061–1069. F. and Cumpsty. Numerical solution of two.. and Booth. . 10.R.J. M. R. Hammache.and three-dimensional rotor tip leakage models.R. H. and Gharib. T. and Hepworth. Measurement Science and Technology 2 (1991) 963–974. Wadia. Booth.J. ERCOFTAC Bulletin 30 (1996) 25–29. ASME Journal of Turbomachinery 115 (1993) 376–382 and 698.. Rotor-tip leakage: Part II Design optimization through viscous analysis and experiment.
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