Performing PIV measurements within complex turbomachinery with multiple blade rows is difficult due to the optical obstruction to the illuminating sheet and to the camera caused by the blades. This paper introduces a refractive index matched facility that overcomes this problem. The rotor and stator blades are made of transparent acrylic, and the working fluid has the same optical refractive index as the blades. A 64% by weight solution of sodium iodide in water is used for this purpose. This liquid has a kinematic viscosity of about 1.1×10–6 m2/s, which is almost the same as that of water enabling operation at high Reynolds numbers. Issues related to operating with this fluid such as chemical stability, variations in transmittance and solutions to these problems are discussed. This setup allows full optical access to the entire rotor and stator passages both to the laser sheet and the camera. The experiments are conducted at different streamwise locations covering the entire flow fields around the rotor, the stator, the gap between them, and the wakes behind. Vector maps of the instantaneous and phase-averaged flow fields as well as the distribution of turbulent kinetic energy are obtained. Measurements at different magnifications enable us to obtain an overview of the flow structure, as well as detailed velocity distributions in the boundary layers and in the wakes.
Experiments in Fluids – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 6, 2002
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