Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 30576
Computational Analysis of the Scaling Effects on the Performance of an Axial Compressor

Authors: Junting Xiang, Jörg Uwe Schlüter, Fei Duan


The miniaturization of gas turbines promises many advantages. Miniature gas turbines can be used for local power generation or the propulsion of small aircraft, such as UAV and MAV. However, experience shows that the miniaturization of conventional gas turbines, which are optimized at their current large size, leads to a substantial loss of efficiency and performance at smaller scales. This may be due to a number of factors, such as the Reynolds-number effect, the increased heat transfer, and manufacturing tolerances. In the present work, we focus on computational investigations of the Reynolds number effect and the wall heat transfer on the performance of axial compressor during its size change. The NASA stage 35 compressor is selected as the configuration in this study and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is used to carry out the miniaturization process and simulations. We perform parameter studies on the effect of Reynolds number and wall thermal conditions. Our results indicate a decrease of efficiency, if the compressor is miniaturized based on its original geometry due to the increase of viscous effects. The increased heat transfer through wall has only a small effect and will actually benefit compressor performance based on our study.

Keywords: Heat Transfer, CFD, Reynolds number, axial compressor, miniature gas turbines

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

Procedia APA BibTeX Chicago EndNote Harvard JSON MLA RIS XML ISO 690 PDF Downloads 2778


[1] Wang, Y.-F. and J. Hu, Effects of Reynolds number on performance and stability of axial fans/compressors. Nanjing Hangkong Hangtian Daxue Xuebao/Journal of Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, 2004. 36(2): p. 145-149.
[2] Choi, M., et al., Effects of the low Reynolds number on the loss characteristics in an axial compressor. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part A: Journal of Power and Energy, 2008. 222(2): p. 209-218.
[3] Back, S.C., et al. Effect of surface roughness location and reynolds number on compressor cascade performance. in ASME Turbo Expo 2010: Power for Land, Sea, and Air, GT 2010, June 14, 2010 - June 18, 2010. 2010. Glasgow, United kingdom: American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
[4] Casey, M.V. and C.J. Robinson. A unified correction method for Reynolds number, size, and roughness effects on the performance of compressors. 2011. 55 City Road, London, EC1Y 1SP, United Kingdom: SAGE Publications Ltd.
[5] Zheng, X., et al., Effects of Reynolds number on the performance of a high pressure-ratio turbocharger compressor. Science China. Technological Sciences, 2013. 56(6): p. 1361-9.
[6] Chen, L., F. Sun, and C. Wu, Effect of heat resistance on the performance of closed gas turbine regenerative cycles. International Journal of Power and Energy Systems, 1999. 19(2): p. 141-145.
[7] Tyagi, S.K., et al., Effect of several irreversibilities on the thermo-economic performance of a realistic Brayton heat engine cycle. Indian Journal of Pure and Applied Physics, 2005. 43(8): p. 612-19.
[8] Rongliang, Z., et al., The steady-state modeling and optimization of a refrigeration system for high heat flux removal. Applied Thermal Engineering, 2010. 30(16): p. 2347-56.
[9] Ma, Y. and G. Xi. Effects of reynolds number and heat transfer on scaling of a centrifugal compressor impeller. in ASME Turbo Expo 2010: Power for Land, Sea, and Air, GT 2010, June 14, 2010 - June 18, 2010. 2010. Glasgow, United Kingdom: American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
[10] Schluter, J.U., et al., A framework for coupling reynolds-averaged with large-eddy simulations for gas turbine applications. Journal of Fluids Engineering, 2005. 127: p. 806-815.
[11] Reid, L. and R.D. Moore, Performance of single-stage axial-flow transonic compressor with rotor and stator aspect ratio of 1.19 and 1.26, respectively, and with design pressure ratio of 1.82. NASA Technical Paper, 1978. 1338.
[12] Reid, L. and R.D. Moore, Design and performance of four highly loaded, high speed inlet stages for an advanced high pressure ratio core compressor. NASA Technical Paper, 1978. 1337.
[13] Chen, J., M.D. Hathaway, and P. Herrick, Pre-stall behavior of a transonic axial compressor stage via time-accurate numerical simulation. 2008.
[14] Burge, J.C., Gas turbine compressors MID&AFT stage radial clearance control. AIAA, 2004. 3416.
[15] Zante, D.E.V., A.J. Strazisar, and J.R. Wood, Recommendations for achieving accurate numerical simulation of tip clearance flows in transonic compressor rotors. NASA/TM, 2000(210347).
[16] Wiesner, F.J., New Appraisal of Reynolds Number Effects on Centrifugal Compressor Performance. American Society of Mechanical Engineers (Paper), 1978(78 -GT-149).