Online water washing represents an operation strategy commonly used to reduce compressor performance deterioration due to blade fouling. Since this kind of washing is applied when the machine operates close to full load conditions, injected droplets are strongly accelerated and consequently impact the rotor blades at high velocity, thus inducing undesirable phenomena like erosion. Here, we present a novel technique to study long-term water droplets erosion by also considering the geometry modification caused by droplets impacts. Two-phase unsteady numerical simulations were carried out, considering the injection of water droplets and their transport across the fluid flow in the first part of a real compressor, which is modeled in the region extending from the inlet to the rotor blades of the first stage. Simulations are performed on the whole machine to account for the asymmetric distribution of the spray injectors, the machine struts, inlet guide vanes (IGVs), and rotor blades. The k−ɛ realizable turbulence model with standard wall functions was coupled with the discrete phase model to track injected droplets motion. Droplets-wall interaction is modeled following the Stanton–Rutland approach aiming at detecting the effect of droplet impact (deposit, rebound, and splashing) depending on the impact conditions. Moreover, a semi-empirical erosion model developed by the authors was used to evaluate the erosion induced by the droplets injection. Material removal due to erosion is converted into nodal mesh displacement that is used by a secondary routine to implement the mesh morphing scheme. The mesh modification is applied at discrete steps to reduce the computational load. This technique is adopted to account for the blades geometry modification due to water droplet erosion leading to performance losses. Moreover, an estimation of the compressor operating life before maintenance operations is given and the water washing efficiency during the whole life of the machine is evaluated by means of proper indices. At the end of the simulation workflow, erosion phenomena are observed in all the compressor regions, especially in the rotor where erosion peaks are reached at the hub of the blades leading edge. The rotor blades wet surface was found to remain almost constant at around 50% during compressor water washing. Erosive phenomena were proved to evolve nonlinearly with time indicating the need to account for the geometry modification for obtaining an accurate prediction of the long-time process.

Numerical prediction of long-term droplet erosion and washing efficiency of axial compressors through the use of a discrete mesh morphing approach / Agati, Giuliano; Castorrini, Alessio; Gruttola, Francesca Di; Gabriele, Serena; Rispoli, Franco; Simone, Domenico; Venturini, Paolo; Borello, Domenico. - In: JOURNAL OF TURBOMACHINERY. - ISSN 0889-504X. - 145:3(2023), pp. 1-13. [10.1115/1.4055649]

Numerical prediction of long-term droplet erosion and washing efficiency of axial compressors through the use of a discrete mesh morphing approach

Agati, Giuliano
;
Castorrini, Alessio;Gruttola, Francesca Di;Gabriele, Serena;Rispoli, Franco;Venturini, Paolo;Borello, Domenico
2023

Abstract

Online water washing represents an operation strategy commonly used to reduce compressor performance deterioration due to blade fouling. Since this kind of washing is applied when the machine operates close to full load conditions, injected droplets are strongly accelerated and consequently impact the rotor blades at high velocity, thus inducing undesirable phenomena like erosion. Here, we present a novel technique to study long-term water droplets erosion by also considering the geometry modification caused by droplets impacts. Two-phase unsteady numerical simulations were carried out, considering the injection of water droplets and their transport across the fluid flow in the first part of a real compressor, which is modeled in the region extending from the inlet to the rotor blades of the first stage. Simulations are performed on the whole machine to account for the asymmetric distribution of the spray injectors, the machine struts, inlet guide vanes (IGVs), and rotor blades. The k−ɛ realizable turbulence model with standard wall functions was coupled with the discrete phase model to track injected droplets motion. Droplets-wall interaction is modeled following the Stanton–Rutland approach aiming at detecting the effect of droplet impact (deposit, rebound, and splashing) depending on the impact conditions. Moreover, a semi-empirical erosion model developed by the authors was used to evaluate the erosion induced by the droplets injection. Material removal due to erosion is converted into nodal mesh displacement that is used by a secondary routine to implement the mesh morphing scheme. The mesh modification is applied at discrete steps to reduce the computational load. This technique is adopted to account for the blades geometry modification due to water droplet erosion leading to performance losses. Moreover, an estimation of the compressor operating life before maintenance operations is given and the water washing efficiency during the whole life of the machine is evaluated by means of proper indices. At the end of the simulation workflow, erosion phenomena are observed in all the compressor regions, especially in the rotor where erosion peaks are reached at the hub of the blades leading edge. The rotor blades wet surface was found to remain almost constant at around 50% during compressor water washing. Erosive phenomena were proved to evolve nonlinearly with time indicating the need to account for the geometry modification for obtaining an accurate prediction of the long-time process.
2023
two-phase CFD simulations, water droplets erosion, mesh morphing, UDF, washing effectiveness, computational fluid dynamics (CFD), fluid dynamics and mass transfer phenomena in compressors
01 Pubblicazione su rivista::01a Articolo in rivista
Numerical prediction of long-term droplet erosion and washing efficiency of axial compressors through the use of a discrete mesh morphing approach / Agati, Giuliano; Castorrini, Alessio; Gruttola, Francesca Di; Gabriele, Serena; Rispoli, Franco; Simone, Domenico; Venturini, Paolo; Borello, Domenico. - In: JOURNAL OF TURBOMACHINERY. - ISSN 0889-504X. - 145:3(2023), pp. 1-13. [10.1115/1.4055649]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11573/1664117
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