Bend skewed casing treatment was designed to improve the stable operating range of single stage transonic axial flow compressor and also to understand the effects of its plenum chamber volume on the performance. This paper presents the original experimental research work undertaken to study the effect of plenum chamber depth and thus its volume on the performance of single stage transonic axial flow compressor coupled with the bend skewed casing treatment. The bend skewed casing treatment with porosity of 33% was selected for the present experimental study. The bend skewed casing treatment has slot width equal to the maximum thickness of the rotor blade. The casing treatment geometry has an axial front segment and a 45° staggered rear segment following the blade tip stagger. Both the segments were skewed by 45° in the radial plane, in such a way that the flow emerging from the casing slots would do so with swirl contrary to the direction of rotor rotation. The plenum chamber which can also be called as stagnation zone exists above the skewed slots. The plenum chamber has an axial length equal to the axial length of the casing treatment slots. The maximum depth of the plenum chamber was 11 mm and which was equal to the depth of bend skewed casing slots. The depth of plenum chamber was varied from zero, half the slot depth, and equal to slot depth in order to get variable volume. The porosity and axial location of the casing treatment relative to the rotor tip chord were chosen from the earlier experimental programs on effect of bend skewed casing treatment porosities and axial coverages for the present compressor stage. Optimum performance of the transonic compressor stage was obtained at 20% and 40% axial coverages and for 33% porosity configurations. The axial coverages of 20% and 40% were chosen for the present study to understand the effects of plenum chamber volume on the performance of single stage transonic axial flow compressor.
The performance of the compressor stage with solid casing and casing treatment with different plenum volume was obtained and compared at different operating speeds. The compressor performance was derived for the fixed casing treatment porosity of 33% and for three different configurations of plenum chamber volumes at two different axial coverages. Experimental investigations reveal that the plenum chamber volume does have an impact on the stable operating range of the compressor. The compressor stall margin improves with increase in the plenum chamber volume. Bend skewed casing treatment coupled with plenum chamber of depths equal to the slots depth results in maximum stall margin improvement of 37.62% as compared to 26.40% without plenum chamber over the solid casing at 40% axial coverage. For this combination 0.8% improvement in the peak stage efficiency above the solid casing was noticed at 60% design speed.