Research Papers: Gas Turbines: Structures and Dynamics

Experimental Evaluation of Hydrodynamic Bearings for a High Speed Turbocharger

[+] Author and Article Information
Robley G. Kirk

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University,
Blacksburg, VA 24061
e-mail: gokirk@vt.edu

Contributed by the Structures and Dynamics Committee of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENGINEERING FOR GAS TURBINES AND POWER. Manuscript received January 8, 2014; final manuscript received January 9, 2014; published online February 18, 2014. Editor: David Wisler.

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 136(7), 072501 (Feb 18, 2014) (9 pages) Paper No: GTP-14-1007; doi: 10.1115/1.4026535 History: Received January 08, 2014; Revised January 09, 2014

Many high speed turbochargers are known to operate with limit cycle vibration as a result of fluid-film instability. The goal of this research was to achieve a stable synchronous response with a minimum of self-excited nonsynchronous contribution. Those vibration components excited by the engine harmonics and exhaust pressure pulsations were not the target of this research. This paper will review the experimental results of the fixed geometry fluid-film bearing designs selected to replace the standard stock floating-ring design. In addition, the paper documents a novel radial tilting pad bearing concept that was designed to replace the fixed geometry bearings, with a minimum of modification to the stock bearing housing. A summary of the on-engine testing over the past seven years is documented in this paper.

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Born, H. R., 1987, “Analytical and Experimental Investigation of the Stability of the Rotor-Bearing System of New Small Turbocharger,” Gas Turbine Conference and Exhibition, Anaheim, CA, May 31–June 4.
Chen, W. J., and Gunter, E. J., 2007, Introduction to Dynamics of Rotor-Bearing Systems, Trafford, Bloomington, IN.
Gunter, E. J., and Chen, W. J., 2000, DyRoBeS—Dynamics of Rotor Bearing Systems User's Manual, RODYN Vibration Analysis, Inc., Charlottesville, VA.
Holmes, R., Brennan, M. J., and Gottrand, B., 2004, “Vibration of an Automotive Turbocharger—A Case Study,” 8th International Conference on Vibrations in Rotating Machinery, Swansea, UK, September 7–9, pp. 445–450.
Alsaeed, A. A., 2005, “Dynamic Stability Evaluation of an Automotive Turbocharger Rotor-Bearing System,” M. S. thesis, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA.
Kirk, R. G., Alsaeed, A. A., and Gunter, E. J., 2007, “Stability Analysis of a High-Speed Automotive Turbocharger,” Tribol. Trans., 50(3), pp. 427–434. [CrossRef]
Kirk, R. G., Alsaeed, A., Liptrap, J., Lindsey, C., Sutherland, D., Dillon, B., Saunders, E., Chappell, M., Nawshin, S., Christian, E., Ellis, A., Mondschein, B., Oliver, J., and Sterling, J., 2008, “Experimental Test Results for Vibration of a High Speed Diesel Engine Turbocharger,” Tribol. Trans., 51(4), pp. 422–427. [CrossRef]
Kirk, R. G., Kornhauser, A., Sterling, J., and Alsaeed, A., 2010, “Turbocharger On-Engine Experimental Vibration Testing,” ASME J. Vibr. Control, 16(3), pp. 343–355. [CrossRef]
Andres, L., and Kerth, J., 2004, “Thermal Effects on the Performance of Floating Ring Bearings for Turbochargers,” Proc. Inst. Mech. Eng. J. Eng. Tribol., 218, pp. 437–450. [CrossRef]
Kirk, R. G., Mondschein, B., Alsaeed, A. A., Gallimore, D., Frank, A., Crouch, J., Tiller, M., Vo, T., Thrush, K., and Lloyd, R., 2010, “Influence of Turbocharger Bearing Design on Observed Linear and Nonlinear Vibration,” ASME/STLE International Joint Tribology Conference, San Francisco, CA, October 17–20, ASME Paper No. IJTC2010-41021. [CrossRef]
Kirk, G., and Songer, W., 2012, “Cage Design Tilting Pad Bearing,” U.S. patent pending.
Kirk, R. G., Morgan, B., Midkiff, M., and Thompson, J., 2011, “Design and Test of a Tilting Pad Bearing for a High Speed Turbocharger,” ASME/STLE International Joint Tribology Conference, Los Angeles, CA, October 23–26, ASME Paper No. IJTC2011-61123. [CrossRef]
Kirk, R. G., Enniss, M., Freeman, D., and Brethwaite, A., 2012, “Diesel Engine Turbocharger Stabilized With Novel Tilting Pad Bearing Design,” ASME/STLE International Joint Tribology Conference, Denver, CO, October 7–10, ASME Paper No. IJTC2012-61041. [CrossRef]
Kirk, R. G., Alsaeed, A. A., and Mondschein, B., 2012, “Turbocharger Vibration Shows Nonlinear Jump,” ASME J. Vibr. Control, 18(10), pp. 1454–1461. [CrossRef]


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Fig. 1

Turbo compressor inlet showing displacement probes and the optical speed sensor with dynamometer in background

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Fig. 2

Data acquisition system

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Fig. 3

Turbocharger rotor build similar to test rotor

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Fig. 4

Turbocharger on test engine showing noncontact vibration probes and the optical Keyphase sensor mounted in place

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Fig. 5

(a) Spectrum plot of vibration showing frequency content for mode 1 and mode 2, data collection at a reduced Keyphase count frequency and (b) waterfall spectrum plot of vibration showing calculated rotor shape of mode 1, mode 2, and the 1× synchronous response

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Fig. 6

Waterfall plot of first full load run of the engine in April 2006

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Fig. 7

Typical unstable orbits for compressor target nut for the run of Fig. 6: (a) 74,100 rpm and (b) 129,900 rpm

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Fig. 8

Centerline plots showing no side load for the no-load run and a large load forcing centerline over and up for the loaded run

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Fig. 9

Examples of fixed geometry bearing designs used for the results of this paper

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Fig. 10

Waterfall plot of six-axial groove on both bearing locations

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Fig. 11

Compressor end orbits near the jump speed for the six-axial groove design at both bearing locations: (a) below jump speed and (b) just after jump speed

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Fig. 12

Waterfall plot of six-axial groove on compressor end and stock floating ring bearing on turbine end

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Fig. 13

Waterfall plot of eight-axial groove on compressor end and stock floating ring bearing on turbine end

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Fig. 14

Waterfall plot of ten-axial groove on compressor end and stock floating ring bearing on turbine end

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Fig. 15

Compressor end orbits near the jump speed for the ten-axial groove design on compressor end bearing: (a) below jump speed and (b) just after jump speed

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Fig. 16

Waterfall plot of four-axial groove on both compressor and turbine end. Full load run, turbo goes to 141 krpm, 1.67 mil-pp.

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Fig. 17

Waterfall plot of three-axial groove on both compressor and turbine end. Full load run, turbo goes to 141 krpm, 2.49 mil pp.

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Fig. 18

Vertical split bearing housing, similar to test turbocharger

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Fig. 19

Initial cage design tilting pad bearing components

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Fig. 20

Tilting pad on both compressor end and turbine end, totally stable to 40,000 rpm and unstable above 40,000 rpm (Mar. 31, 2011)

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Fig. 21

New cage design assembly showing the improved oil feed pockets

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Fig. 22

Compressor end improved design bearing installed

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Fig. 23

Acceleration from idle to full load and deceleration to stop with significant self-excited instabilities with improved cage, and with 1× amplitude of 1.6 mil-pp at top speed of 141.7 krpm. Clearance base on the diameter (Cd) = 3 mil, without o-rings, SS1126.

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Fig. 24

New cage design, modified oil groove, over-bored cage inner diameter, with no o-rings, Cd = 1.4 mil, smaller pivot radius, full load condition, Case No. S1204c, 2.6 mil-pp 1× at 138.7 krpm

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Fig. 25

Acceleration from idle, full load, and deceleration to stop with no significant self-excited instabilities, final design of cage and pads, 1× = 2.36 mil-pp at top speed of 141 krpm, Cd = 1 mil, with o-rings, S1225

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Fig. 26

Centerline plot of tilting pad design showing similar side load for the tilting pad bearing full load runs but a simple float upward during the final reduction in speed to stop



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