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The Effect of Pressure Losses on Measured Compressor Efficiency

While measuring the compressor behavior at different load points in for example a gas stand, the inlet and outlet pressures are not always measured directly before and after the compressor. The friction inside the pipes and the physical piping configuration affect the measured compressor efficiency, due to the induced change of fluid enthalpy. If the measured pressures at the end of the inlet and outlet pipes are not the same as the actual pressure before and after the compressor, the acquired compressor map does not give the right description of it as an isolated component. The main contribution of this paper is the analysis of the impact of gas stand energy losses due to pipe friction on the compressor map. As a result the paper suggests a way to take the pressure losses in the inlet and outlet pipes into account. The suggested model takes pipe friction, diffuser, nozzle and pipe bends into account. The potential measurement error in compressor efficiency due to energy losses in the pipes in this experiment is 2.7% (percentage points) at maximum mass flow of air through the compressor.

Kristoffer Ekberg and Lars Eriksson


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