Suppression of Cavitation in Inducers by J-Grooves

[+] Author and Article Information
Young-Do Choi

Division of Systems Research, Faculty of Engineering,  Yokohama National University, 79-5 Tokiwadai, Hodogaya-ku, Yokohama, 240-8501 Japanydchoi@mach.me.ynu.ac.jp

Junichi Kurokawa

Division of Systems Research, Faculty of Engineering,  Yokohama National University, 79-5 Tokiwadai, Hodogaya-ku, Yokohama, 240-8501 Japan

Hiroshi Imamura

 College Master Hands, Inc., 1st Floor NT Bldg., 2-1-31 Midorigaoka, Zama-shi, Kanagawa, 228-0021 Japan

J. Fluids Eng 129(1), 15-22 (Jul 03, 2006) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2375126 History: Received September 19, 2005; Revised July 03, 2006

Cavitation is a serious problem in the development of high-speed turbopumps, and an inducer is often used to avoid cavitation in the main impeller. Thus, the inducer often operates under the worst conditions of cavitation. If it could be possible to control and suppress cavitation in the inducer by some new device, it would also be possible to suppress cavitation occurring in all types of pumps. The purpose of our present study is to develop a new, effective method of controlling and suppressing cavitation in an inducer using shallow grooves, called “J-Grooves.” J-Grooves are installed on the casing wall near the blade tip to use the high axial pressure gradient that exists between the region just downstream of the inducer leading edge and the region immediately upstream of the inducer. The results show that the proper combination of backward-swept inducer with J-Grooves improves the suction performance of the turbopump remarkably, at both partial flow rates and the design flow rate. The rotating backflow cavitation occurring at low flow rates and the cavitation surge which occurs near the best efficiency point can be almost fully suppressed by installing J-Grooves.

Copyright © 2007 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 1

Schematic view of test pump. (a) Flat-plate inducer A (β1=β2=17.5deg); (b) cambered inducer B (β1=13deg, β2=17deg); (c) flat-plate inducer C (β1=β2=19.5deg).

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Figure 3

J-Groove mounted on a casing wall of inducer

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Figure 4

Comparison of wall pressure distribution without J-Groove for cambered inducer B (ℓ=40mm). (a)r∕R=0.40 (near blade hub); (b)r∕R=0.87 (near blade tip).

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Figure 5

Calculated pressure distribution along a blade surface for flat-plate inducer C (ϕ∕ϕbep=1.0, β1=β2=19.5deg). (a) Effect of inducer; (b) effect of J-Groove.

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Figure 6

Comparison of pump performance

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Figure 7

Improvement of suction performance by inducer and J-Groove

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Figure 8

Effect of J-Groove on the improvement of suction performance. (a) Effect of inducer (without J-Groove); (b) effect of J-Groove; (c) comparison of suction specific speed with inducers and J-Grooves.

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Figure 9

Improvement of suction specific speed by J-Groove. (a)ϕ∕ϕbep=0.6; (b)ϕ∕ϕbep=1.0; (c)ϕ∕ϕbep=1.4.

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Figure 10

Spectral analysis with inducer C (fshaft=33.3Hz). (a)ϕ∕ϕbep=0.6 (J-Groove 2); (b)ϕ∕ϕbep=1.0 (J-Groove 2); (c)ϕ∕ϕbep=1.0 (J-Groove 4).

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Figure 11

Spectral analysis with inducer C and J-Grooves (fshaft=33.3Hz). (a) Without J-Groove (ϕ∕ϕbep=0.6); (b) with J-Groove 2 (ϕ∕ϕbep=0.6); (c) with J-Groove 4 (ϕ∕ϕbep=1.0).

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Figure 12

Suppression of rotating backflow cavitation and cavitation surge (σ=0.05, inducer C)




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