Inlet distortion is an important consideration in fan performance. Distortion can be generated through flight conditions and airframe-engine interfaces. The focus of this paper is a series of high-fidelity, time-accurate Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations of a multistage fan, investigating distortion transfer, distortion generation, and the underlying flow physics under different operating conditions. The simulations are full annulus and include 3 stages and the inlet guide vane (IGV). The code used to carry out these simulations is a modified version of Overflow2.2 that was developed as part of the Computational Research and Engineering Acquisition Tools and Environment (CREATE) program. The inlet boundary condition is a single revolution (sinusoidal pattern with one period over the circumference ) total pressure distortion. Simulations at choke, design, and near stall are analyzed and compared to experimental data. Distortion transfer and generation is analyzed under these different operating conditions. Analysis includes the phase and amplitude of total temperature and pressure distortion through each stage of the fan, level of distortion transfer and generation in each stage, and blade loading. An understanding of the flow physics associated with distorted flows will help fan designers account for unsteady flow physics at design and off-design operating conditions, in order to build more robust fans offering a greater stability margin.



College and Department

Ira A. Fulton College of Engineering and Technology; Mechanical Engineering



Date Submitted


Document Type





CFD, OVERFLOW2.2, Turbomachinery, Distortion, Blade Loading