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Purdue University

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International Compressor Engineering Conference School of Mechanical Engineering

1996

CFD Studies of Flow in Screw and Scroll


Compressors
N. Stosic
City University

I. K. Smith
City University

S. Zagorac
DRUM International

Follow this and additional works at: http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/icec

Stosic, N.; Smith, I. K.; and Zagorac, S., "CFD Studies of Flow in Screw and Scroll Compressors" (1996). International Compressor
Engineering Conference. Paper 1103.
http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/icec/1103

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CFD STU DIE S OF FLO W IN SCR EW AND SCR OLL
COM PRE SSO RS

N. Stosic and I. K. Smith,


Professors1 Depa rtmen t of Mechanical Engin eerin g and Aeron
autics! City University!
Londo n ECl V OHB1 U.K.

S. Zagorac,
DRU M Intern ation al1 Edwa rd St Work s Tong St
1

Bradf ord BD4 9SH1 U.K.

ABS TRA CT

An analysis of flow in rotary positive displacement machines


has been carrie d out using a stand ard
CFD package by separ ating out the motio ns of the fluid and
the instan taneo us volume in which
it is contained. Examples are given of both twin screw and
scroll compressors. Pressure-volume
diagrams obtained from such analyses are comp ared with exper
imental result s and good agreement
shown. Longer term aims of such studies are to obtai n a bette
r under stand ing of the intern al flow
processes, especially where two component flow, such as oil/ai
r mixtures are involved.

INTR ODU CTIO N

This paper describes the first stages of a longer term proje


ct to obtai n great er under stand ing
of the natur e of fluid flow withi n rotary positi ve displaceme
nt machines such as those of the screw
and scroll type. The great est need for such impro ved under
stand ing is where there is more than
one flow component as in oil inject ed compressors. In such
cases, the assum ption s normally made
on oil and gas separ ation withi n the machines may thus be
checked.
Flow of fluid in a rotary positive displa ceme nt compressor is
unsteady, three-dimensional, tur-
bulen t and compressible. Its analysis may be simplified if a
grid is defined to describe the instan ta-
neous volume of fluid trapp ed in the mach ine and the motio
n is described first in terms of the fluid
relati ve to the grid and then of the grid itself. By this mean
s fluid motio n throu gh all compressors
of this type may be analysed with stand ard nume rical proce
dures.
The flow of the fluid relati ve to the grid may be calcu lated using
a nume rical proce dure, but with
the grid motion replaced by exter nal body forces on the fluid.
Altho ugh the grid is continuously in
motio n and changing in shape , its geom etry may be defined
at all times and its motio n described

181
by simultaneous translation and rotation. Thus the grid acceleration is calculated for each time
step and included in the momentum equation terms while all other terms in the equation would be
unchanged.

The result is the same as would be obtained if a general moving grid was built into the numerical
procedure, but such a procedure would be more complex, and would require the use of more
advanced CFD solvers than those currently in use.

Available CFD packages usually contain a preprocessor, which prepares a grid for the solver
to integrate equations and a postprocessor which conveniently present results calculated. Despite
their sofistication, commercial preprocessors can barely cope with any unusual shapes and, despite
its simplicity, this appears to include screw and scroll compressor geometry. Our attempts to
use commercial preprocessors to generate proper grids for screw and scroll compressor working
chambers flow calculations failed. Finally we reprogrammed part of a general grid generator and
applied it succesfully to produce grids to perform the calculations presented in this paper.

BASIC EQUATIONS

By use of mass averaged Navier-Stokes equations, the continuity equation may be written as:

where p and U; are density and velocity, while the momentum equation may be expressed as:
au; au; ap a _
p-a + pUj-a =--a +-a [p.S;j- puiuj + pa;]
t Xj X; Xj

s-- _au;+ auj _ ~auk 5 __


tJ - axj ax; 3 OXk tJ

1 -. the
where S;j denotes for the strain, p the pressure, pu;uj the Reynolds stress, k ?,PUiUi lS

turbulent kinetic energy and f.L is a fluid dynamic viscosity.

The total velocity is the sum of the transfer (grid point) velocity Bxd 8t and the velocity relative
2 2
a
to the grid Ui. Transfer acceleration is given as a; = xd8t . Forces caused by the grid motion
are implemented into the source terms in the same maner as other external body forces, as for
example, gravity force.

In the absence of heat sources the transport equation for internal energy E is given as:

aE 8E 8Ui 8 [ p. 8E -] aU;
Pat + pUj-a
x = p-a
X, x 3.
+-a -Pr -a
X,
. - peuj - p.S;j-a
X
.
3
1

182
where Pr is Prandtl number.

The turbule nce model implem ented is a plane k- c: model with no addition al terms.

o(pc:)
at
+ o(pUjc:)
axj
= CdPk: _- pCe:z c:z
k k
+ _!_
axj
[(f.t + ()""f.lt) oc:
axj
l
where c is the turbule nt energy dissipation, Pk = 2f.l,tSijSij for turbule nce energy
product ion,
f.lt = pCI-Lk 2 jE: is a turbule nt viscosity and O" is a turbule nt Prandtl number
. Reynolds stress and
turbule nt heat flux are given as:

_
peu= - -
f.tt aE
2 Pr OXi
Constan ts of k- c: turbule nce model are: Cjl. = 0.09, o-k = 1, O"e: = 1.3, Ce1 = 1.44, C,z = 1.92
Standar d wall functions are implem ented on all walls, and a standar d constan t pressure
bound~
ary condition was used at all flow faces.

NUME RICAL SOLUT ION PROC EDUR E

The standar d 3d finite volume colocated grid numeric al procedu re "Fastes t" [1], [3]
was employed
to obtain numeric al solutions. The force terms arising from the grid motion were
added to the
momen tum equatio n source terms. This part of the numeric al procedu re was most
conveniently
introdu ced through user defined functions. The SIMPL E pressur e procedu re was adapted
to ac~
count for fluid compre ssibility by means of an equaton of state with a pressure correcti
on correction
transpo rt equatio n of a mixed convection~diffusion type [2].

CALC ULAT ION OF SCREW COMP RESSO R FLOW

Fig 1 present s a screw rotor mesh generat ed by the adopted grid preprocessor. Fig 2
shows how
the male and female rotor passages were created by the same preprocessor. One block,
contain ing
2420 control volumes, was constru cted for each passage and the multigr id procedu re
was used to
obtain a final solution. Initially, two grids of control volumes were tried and the second
grid used
contained 38720 control volumes.

The full multigr id procedu re required less than one minute per unit time step, using
a P-
166MHz worksta tion, and a full cycle calculation was perform ed in less than six hours.
The results
obtaine d were ploted by the "Fastes t" postprocessor in the form corresponding to
experim ental

183
and velocity
results which were used to validate numeric al calculations. Absolute velocity vectors
vectors relative to the grid are present ed Fig 3.
and
The screw compressor flow thus calculat ed has been partiall y validate d experim entally
comparative results in the form of a pressure-volume plot are shown in Fig 4.

CALC ULAT ION OF SCROL L COMP RESSO R FLOW

used to
An outline of a scroll compressor configuration is shown in Fig 5 togethe r with the grid
384 control
describe it. The grid is comprised of two blocks, namely: the discharge passage with
rale block is
volumes and the interspi ral chmabe r with 600 control volumes. In Fig 6 the interspi
were very
presented in the third grid comprising 38400 control volumes. Compu ter perform ances
similar to those obtaine d for the screw compressor.
grid in
Velocity vectors in the grid coordin ate system and the absolut e velocity values for the
in Fig 8.
motion are given in Fig 7. Finaly, a pressur e history for the scroll compressor is given

CONC LUSIO NS

history in
As may be seen, the agreem ent between the only quantit y measured, the pressur e
It is hoped
the screw compressor chambe r and its estimat ed counter part was reasona bly good.
any type of
that further development of this techniq ue will enable the flow charact eristics within
new insights
rotary positive displace ment machin e to be modelle d accurat ely and thereby lead to
ly, lead to
into :flow within them. This should be a useful tool in compressor design and, hopeful
would be
designs with improved performance. Also a more detailed measur ments of velocity field
appreciated for a thoroug h comparison with calcula ted data.

REFER ENCE S

geome-
[1] Schafer M, Stosic N, 1994: Parallel multigr id calculations of turbule nt flows in complex
tries Proc. World CFD User Conference Basle 1 Switzerl and
Thesis 1 Uni-
[2] Stosic N, 1982: Numeri cal modelling of internal flows of compressible fluid, PhD
versity of Sarajevo
[3] - 1995: Fastest: Parallel Multigr id Solver for Flows in Complex Geometries: User Manual
Lehrstuhl fiir Stromun gsmech anik 1 Universitiit Erlangen-Niirnberg1 German y

184
Fig 1 Screw roto r mesh

'! -

'!.; __ _
;::_I -

1;/j /___
_
It/- ----
'~ ;1: ~-- ,__ Fig 2 Grid of a screw com pres sor working
~~
0 Y/
Qj
,___
;;::/ ~...-_~----- --- \
~ ''-...
---- with the mai n and gate roto rs
cham ber,
0 '~ /_ '1'\
~'!;;I1/;,, ~I/
1--'
<
Vl '?;1/\JII
-'/ / j//i Jl'
1

'lf//jl' ~---//I I! I 5/6 'N' Profil e Oil Flood ed Air Screw


~//I ' -_ - - / / f / . n=51 58rpm Q=4. 04m3 /min Comp resso r
l -...- _., .,.. ? ; ) I p= 10.5b mo/m v=4.3 3 to=31 7K 11 =295K
Vfl' --- - 12~~------,-----
---.----
12=33 5K
-----.--------,-

f! I 13
1 - -------.
'i'
" I' - - .

1',.....
'-:: :
~---~
\ '
,II''-: ~ ..
I'
I ' ~ ~
I',
, .... ~ ~
I'
'-
0..

4-;1 ----- i~
l ~
..----- - 1 -~ _ 211 Estim
_,,, Measuated
red

300

Fig 3 The inte rsec tion of the mai n roto r inte Fig 4 Mea sure d and esti mat ed pres sure chan
rlob e with ge within
calc ulat ed velocity vectors in the relative (grid the screw compressor working volume
)
coo rdin ate syst em and in the abso lute coo
rdin ate syst em
Fig 5 Outline of a scroll compressor profile with views of
grid blocks of a scroll compressor
Fig 6 Axonometric view of a scroll compressor working chamber

+--'
00
0\ ~-
=------....,,,
-'
','. -
'-
........ ~ '- ' ..._
COMPUTER MODP.~LINC
~-------,',,II 0!' A SCROLL MACH IN E

~.........-----~, 1 \1 I
I I\'''- Pre1surc-Angle Diag.rhm
I /I'._-------... . . ,.
~--..:o~
"' -----\\ 1;0~ ~/_ _ . -____..- - -
-//...----,, IJ;/1/1,...-://
~/~~~~--~
/ ' - , I ' , , , I If///~~. / /----=--------
15.0
'!1/:,_,,,, 'I
~
I~:--:
/ -- I/~ \ \J/%1lit;,__._-,,
' '''1// / --- , ______ __
-=---, ', ':::-===---=:::_-- I

~
/~----
F' ,,,1/vO //---_- --------
I /1 1/ /--- 12.0

IJ
'' ,,/,;;
1/. -,",\, "'-

',_',,
I'.. '\\\'"'''->:-,'
"-' \ \ l ! r , ___ ,_, - 'L'
e
0

~ \' I "'',\\11 ... _,


. . . . . . . ,,

v
I'.
\'-I
"'--
.._ ' ' ' " ' - ~ 6.0

\ '''--;I =-:'':
- . : . -- ..
il
\.'-!
'' '
-
--._ -
'
r ~
"-
4.0
~
~ !

ll.O
-400 -200 () 200 4ll0 500
Rotor ongle (deg)

Fig 7 Calculated velocity vectors in relative (grid) coordinate


Fig 8 Calculated pressure changes in a scroll compressor
system and for the stationary (absolute) coordinate system