Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Axial Flow Compressor

An axial flow compressor compresses a large volume of low pressure air at low velocity into a small volume of high velocity air at high pressure. The rotating blades draw air into the compressor. These rotating blades induce a velocity, also known as kinetic energy, into the air forcing it to move aft through the compressor assembly where it impacts the stationary stators.

The stators are stationary blades attached to the outer casing of the axial flow compressor. When the air contacts the stators, it reduces the velocity and converts part of the kinetic energy into static pressure and heat. The mass airflow is then directed to the next set of rotating blades. This process is then repeated through each stage until the desire pressure is obtained.

The apparent contradiction in the operation of the axial flow compressor is that high pressure is generated, although the overall divergent shape would appear to cause lower output pressure. Output pressure is increased by divergence in each static interstage section. Rotating compressor blades between each static stage increase the velocity that is lost by injecting energy.