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Research Papers: Gas Turbines: Structures and Dynamics

Capacitive Film Thickness Measurements in a Ventless Aero-Engine Bearing Chamber—Influence of Operating Conditions and Offtake Design

[+] Author and Article Information
Wolfram Kurz

e-mail: wolfram.kurz@kit.edu

Hans-Jörg Bauer

Institut für Thermische Strömungsmaschinen,
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT),
Karlsruhe 76131, Germany

If droplets are neglected, the residence volume can be considered as the integration of the film thickness over the whole chamber surface.

Contributed by the Structures and Dynamics Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING FOR GAS TURBINES AND POWER. Manuscript received June 28, 2013; final manuscript received July 17, 2013; published online September 17, 2013. Editor: David Wisler.

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 135(11), 112504 (Sep 17, 2013) (7 pages) Paper No: GTP-13-1204; doi: 10.1115/1.4025067 History: Received June 28, 2013; Revised July 17, 2013

The paper presents results from film thickness measurements in a bearing chamber test rig. The measurements were performed at different operating conditions and with two offtake designs. A discussion of the measurement technique using in situ calibrated capacitive sensors shows good accuracy and repeatability. The film thickness results are first compared to measurements with the same chamber in a vented configuration. The analysis of the measurements at various operating conditions shows a strong influence of the shaft speed, the chamber pressure, and the offtake design. In contrast to that, flow rate and scavenge ratio have only minor influence. Furthermore, the momentum flux of the core air flow is proposed as a suitable parameter with which the influence of shaft speed and pressure can be correlated to the film thickness distribution.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

The bearing chamber test rig

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Fig. 2

Cross section of the test rig

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Fig. 3

Position of film thickness sensors

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Fig. 4

Schematics of scavenge offtakes

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Fig. 5

Schematic of the sensor-platelet assembly in a curved surface

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Fig. 6

Relationship between calibration with tape and hot oil

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Fig. 7

Time-averaged film thickness measurements at n = 15,000 rpm: Individual measurements and mean

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Fig. 8

Comparison of the film thickness of vented and ventless bearing chamber

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Fig. 9

Comparison of the film thickness at low and high bearing chamber pressure

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Fig. 10

Film thickness at three positions against momentum flux of the core air flow. Dashed line indicates possible threshold for rotation of oil film.

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Fig. 11

Influence of oil flow rate and SR on the film thickness at n = 5000 rpm

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Fig. 12

Influence of oil flow rate and SR on the film thickness at n = 15,000 rpm

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