On the upper part load vortex rope in Francis turbine: Experimental investigation

The swirling flow developing in Francis turbine draft tube under part load operation leads to pressure fluctuations usually in the range of 0.2 to 0.4 times the runner rotational frequency resulting from the so-called vortex breakdown. For low cavitation number, the flow features a cavitation vortex rope animated with precession motion. Under given conditions, these pressure fluctuations may lead to undesirable pressure fluctuations in the entire hydraulic system and also produce active power oscillations. For the upper part load range, between 0.7 and 0.85 times the best efficiency discharge, pressure fluctuations may appear in a higher frequency range of 2 to 4 times the runner rotational speed and feature modulations with vortex rope precession. It has been pointed out that for this particular operating point, the vortex rope features elliptical cross section and is animated of a self-rotation. This paper presents an experimental investigation focusing on this peculiar phenomenon, defined as the upper part load vortex rope. The experimental investigation is carried out on a high specific speed Francis turbine scale model installed on a test rig of the EPFL Laboratory for Hydraulic Machines. The selected operating point corresponds to a discharge of 0.83 times the best efficiency discharge. Observations of the cavitation vortex carried out with high speed camera have been recorded and synchronized with pressure fluctuations measurements at the draft tube cone. First, the vortex rope self rotation frequency is evidenced and the related frequency is deduced. Then, the influence of the sigma cavitation number on vortex rope shape and pressure fluctuations is presented. The waterfall diagram of the pressure fluctuations evidences resonance effects with the hydraulic circuit. The time evolution of the vortex rope volume is compared with pressure fluctuations time evolution using image processing. Finally, the influence of the Froude number on the vortex rope shape and the associated pressure fluctuations is analyzed by varying the rotational speed.


Published in:
Proceedings of the 25th Symposium on Hydraulic Machinery and Systems, 1, 1-11
Presented at:
25th Symposium on Hydraulic Machinery and Systems, Timişoara, Romania, September 20-24, 2010
Year:
2010
Publisher:
International Association For Hydraulic Research
Other identifiers:
Laboratories:




 Record created 2018-05-20, last modified 2019-08-12

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