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research-article

An efficient iterative approach for the analysis of thermal instabilities in rotating machines

[+] Author and Article Information
Andrea Rindi

Professor, Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Florence, Florence, 50139, Italy
andrea.rindi@unifi.it

Leonardo Baldassarre

Engineering Manager of Compressors, Expanders and Electrical Systems
leonardo.baldassare@ge.com

Daniele Panara

Axial and Centrifugal Compressor, Rotordynamic Senior Engineer, General Electric Oil&Gas, Florence, 50127, Italy
daniele.panara@ge.com

Enrico Meli

Assistant Professor
enrico.meli@unifi.it

Alessandro Ridolfi

Assistant Professor
alessandro.ridolfi@unifi.it

Amedeo Frilli

Assistant Professor
amedeo.frilli@unifi.it

Daniele Nocciolini

Ph. D. Researcher, Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Florence, Florence, 50139, Italy
daniele.nocciolini@unifi.it

Simone Panconi

Ph. D. Researcher, Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Florence, Florence, 50139, Italy
simone.panconi@unifi.it

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4037143 History: Received November 02, 2016; Revised June 08, 2017

Abstract

Most of the technological developments achieved in the turbomachinery field during the last years have been obtained through the introduction of fluid dynamic bearings, in particular Tilting Pad Journal Bearings. However, even those bearings can be affected by thermal instability phenomena as the Morton effect at high peripheral speeds. In this present work, the authors propose a new iterative FEM approach for the analysis of those thermal-structural phenomena: the proposed model, based on the coupling between the rotor dynamic and the thermal behavior if the system, is able to accurately reproduce the onset of thermal instabilities. The authors developed two versions of the model, one in the frequency domain and the other one in the time domain; both models are able to assure a good tradeoff between numerical efficiency and accuracy. The computational efficiency is critical when dealing with the typical long times of thermal instability. The research activity has been carried out in cooperation with General Electric Nuovo Pignone SPA, that provided both the technical and experimental data needed for the model development and validation.

Copyright (c) 2017 by ASME
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