Three-dimensional inverse method for turbomachine blades by the circulation method: The thickness problem

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering


Thong Q. Dang


Turbomachine, Blades, Thickness problem

Subject Categories

Mechanical Engineering


This dissertation summarizes a procedure to design blades with finite thickness in three dimensions. In this inverse method, the prescribed quantities are the blade pressure loading shape, the inlet and outlet spanwise distributions of swirl, and the blade thickness distributions, and the primary calculated quantity is the blade geometry. The method is formulated in the fully inverse mode for design of three-dimensional blades in rotational and compressible flows whereby the blade shape is determined iteratively using the flow tangency condition along the blade surfaces.

This technique is demonstrated here in the first instance for the design of two-dimensional cascaded and three-dimensional blades with finite thickness in inviscid and incompressible flows. In addition, the incoming flow is assumed irrotational so that the only vorticity present in the flowfield is the blade bound and shed vorticities. Design calculations presented for two-dimensional cascaded blades include an inlet guide vane, an impulse turbine blade, and a compressor blade. Consistency check is carried out for these cascaded blade design calculations using a panel analysis method and the analytical solution for the Gostelow profile. Free-vortex design results are also shown for fully three-dimensional blades with finite thickness such as an inlet guide vane, a rotor of axial-flow pumps, and a high-flow-coefficient pump inducer with design parameters typically found in industrial applications. These three-dimensional inverse design results are verified using Adamczyk's inviscid code.


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