Investigation of the Surge Phenomena in a Centrifugal Compressor using Large Eddy Simulation

Authors: Semlitsch, B., Jyothishkumar, , Mihaescu, M, Fuchs, L.F., Gutmark, E.
Document Type: Conference
Pubstate: Accepted
Journal: ASME 2013 International Mechanical Engineering Congress
Volume: ASME paper, IMECE2013-66301  
Year: 2013


The flow through a ported shroud compressor of an automobile turbocharger is simulated using Large Eddy Simulations. Generally, the compressor is subjected to work within certain range of the mass-flow conditions. Reduction of the operation mass-flow below a certain minimum limit, leads to breakdown of the complete compressor operability. Flow reversal occurs in the compressor wheel, which results in amplification of velocity and pressure fluctuations. Consequentially, large vibratory stresses are induced into the blades under off-design condition and thereby affect the blade life duration detrimentally. The aim of this study is to understand the generation of flow-structures during extreme operable conditions (surge condition) in a centrifugal compressor. The investigation of the appearing flow-structures with the surge phenomenon is essential to explore new methods that improve the stability or the flow-operating regime of the compressor. The complete 360° compressor geometry is utilized in the computational simulations. Further, the transient sliding mesh technique is applied to account for an accurate prediction of the mesh motion and thus, the geometrical interaction between the impeller and the stationary diffuser. The numerical results are compared with available experimental measurements obtained under the same operating conditions (design and near-surge condition). The rotating stall instability is predicted using FFT data analysis. Furthermore, the numerical study captures the low frequency peak characterizing the global instability of the surge condition.