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Axial Flow Compressor

Dr.Gurunadh Velidi
• Turbomachinery is classified as all those
devices in which energy is transferred either
to or from a continuously flowing fluid by the
dynamic action of one or more moving blade
• The word Turbo or Turbinis is of Latin origin
and implies that spins or whirls around
essentially a rotating blade row.
The thermodynamic Variations
• Two main categories of turbo-machine are identified:
• Firstly, those which absorb power to increase the fluid
pressure or head (fans, compressors and pumps);
• Secondly, those that produce power by expanding fluid to
a lower pressure or head (hydraulic, steam and gas

Incompressible Compressible
Fluid Fluid
Power Generating Hydraulic Turbines Steam/Gas/wind
Machines Turbines
Power Consuming Pumps Fan/blowers/
Machines Compressors
Fluid Dynamics of A Turbo-machine

A Turbo-machine
Multi Stage Hybrid Compressor
Static & Stagnation Scalars


Classification : Flow Path
• In Turbomachinery, power is added to or
removed from the fluid by the rotating
• These rotating components exert forces on
the fluid that changes both the energy and the
tangential momentum of the fluid
• Euler's Equation relate the changes in energy
to the changes in tangential momentum
• Consider the adiabatic flow of a fluid along
the CV. The fluid in a stream tube enters a
control volume at radius , with Tangential
• The exit at
Axial Flow Compressor Analysis
• It finds its major application in large gas turbine
engines like those that power today's jet aircraft.
• The compressor is made up of two major
assemblies: the rotor with its blades, and the
casing with its stationary blades (called stators).
• This chapter investigates the relationships of the
desired performance parameters to the related
blade loading and resultant fluid flow angles.
a) rotor with blades, b) case with stators, and

c) compressor assembly. (Courtesy of Pratt & Whitney).

• This most complex flow can be understood by
dividing the three-dimensional flow field into
three two-dimensional flow fields.
• The complete flow field will be the "sum" of
these less complex two-dimensional flows.
• The two-dimensional flow fields are normally
called the through flow field, the cascade field
(or blade-to-blade field), and the secondary
flow field.
• The most common method of obtaining
performance data for different blade profiles
is to run cascade tests.
• A set of airfoils of the desired blade shape is
mounted in a conditioned flow stream, and
the performance is experimentally measured.
Flow field about cascade.
Two-Dimensional Flow Through Blade Rows
• Depending on the design, an inlet guide vane (IGV) may be used to
deflect the incoming airflow to a predetermined angle toward the
direction of rotation of the rotor.
• The rotor increases the angular velocity of the fluid, resulting in
increases in total temperature, total pressure, and static pressure.
• The following stator decreases the angular velocity of the fluid,
resulting in an increase in the static pressure, and sets the flow up
for the following rotor.
• A compressor stage is made up of a rotor and a stator.
• The basic building block of the aerodynamic design of axial-flow
compressors is the cascade, an endless repeating array of airfoils
that results from the "unwrapping" of the stationary (stators) and
rotating (rotor) airfoils.
• Each cascade passage acts as a small diffuser, and it is said to be
well designed .
• The changes in fluid velocity induced by the blade rows are
related to changes in the fluid's thermodynamic properties
in this section.
• The analysis is concerned with only the flow far upstream
and far downstream of a cascade--the regions where the
flow fields are uniform.
• In the analysis that follows, two different coordinate systems
are used: one fixed to the compressor housing (absolute)
and the other fixed to the rotating blades (relative). The
static (thermodynamic) properties do not depend on the
reference frame.
• However, the total properties do depend on the reference
frame. The velocity of a fluid in one reference frame is easily
converted to the other frame by the following equation:
Consider the compressor stage made up of a rotor followed by a stator as shown in Fig.
The two efficiencies most commonly used are stage efficiency and polytropic efficiency.

Stage Efficiency:

The stage efficiency of an adiabatic compressor is defined as the ratio of the ideal work per
unit mass to the actual work per unit mass between the same total pressures.

For a calorically perfect gas, this simplifies to

polytropic efficiency

The polytropic efficiency of an adiabatic compressor is defined as the ratio of

the ideal work per unit mass to the actual work per unit mass for a differential pressure
In the limit, as the pressure ratio approaches 1, the stage efficiency approaches the
polytropic efficiency.
The compressor polytropic efficiency is useful in preliminary design of
compressors for gas turbine engines to predict the compressor efficiency for a
given level of technology
For a calorically perfect gas, the static enthalpy rises in the equation become
static temperature rises, and the degree of reaction is

In the general case, it is desirable to have the degree of reaction in the vicinity of
0.5 because the rotor and stator rows then will "share the burden" of increasing
the enthalpy of the flow.
Cascade airfoil nomenclature and loss coefficient.
The airfoil angles of both the rotor and the stator can be calculated from the
flow angles, given the incidence angle and solidity for each. To obtain the exit
airfoil angle.
Losses in cascade airfoils are normally quantified in terms of the drop in
total pressure divided by the dynamic pressure of the incoming flow.
This ratio is called the total pressure loss coefficient and is defined as
The ratio of the stage work to rotor speed squared is called the stage loading
coefficient and is defined as

For a calorically perfect gas, the stage loading coefficient can be written as

Modem axial-flow compressors used for aircraft gas turbine engines have stage
loading coefficients in the range of 0.3-0.35 at the mean radius
The ratio of the axial velocity to the rotor speed is called the flow coefficient
and is defined as

The flow coefficients for modem axial-flow compressors of aircraft gas turbine
engines are in the range of 0.45-0.55 at the mean radius.
When the stage efficiency and polytropic efficiency are unknown, the stage
pressure ratio can be determined by using loss coefficients based on cascade
data and other losses.
The total pressure for a compressor stage can be written in terms of loss coefficients
of the rotor and stator ,

Noting that the total pressure loss of the rotor is based on the relative velocity, we
Design Process