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Abstract

Pressure pulsation phenomena in a large Kaplan turbine are investigated by means of numerical simulations (CFD) and prototype measurements in order to study the dynamic behavior of flow due to the blade passage and its interaction with other components of the turbine. Numerical simulations are performed with the commercial software Ansys CFX code, solving the incompressible Unsteady Reynolds-Averaged-Navier Stokes equations under a finite volume scheme. The computational domain involves the entire machine at prototype scale. Special care is taken in the discretization of the wicket gate overhang and runner blade gap. Prototype measurements are performed using pressure transducers at different locations among the wicket gate outlet and the draft tube inlet. Then, CFD results are compared with temporary signals of prototype measurements at identical locations to validate the numerical model. A detailed analysis was focused on the tip gap flow and the pressure field at the discharge ring. From a rotating reference frame perspective, it is found that the mean pressure fluctuates accordingly the wicket gate passage. Moreover, in prototype measurements the pressure frequency that reveals the presence of modulated cavitation at the discharge ring is distinguished, as also verified from the shape of erosion patches in concordance with the number of wicket gates.

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