New Hydraulic Test Rig for Small-Power Turbomachines

Vlad Hasmatuchi, Francisco Botero, Shadya Gabathuler, Cécile Münch

Tuesday 30 june 2015

15:05 - 15:20h at Africa (level 0)

Themes: (T) Water engineering, (ST) Experimental facilities and instrumentation

Parallel session: 6F. Engineering - Instrumentation

A new universal test rig has been installed at the HES-SO VS Sion - Switzerland to assess the hydraulic performances of different types of small-power turbomachines (up to 10 kW) and other hydraulic components with complex geometry, following the IEC 60193 standard recommendations. The closed-loop circuit is supplied by three recirculating centrifugal pumps with variable speed, connected in parallel, which can deliver a maximum discharge of 45 m3/h and a maximum pressure of 160 mWC. The pressurized reservoir placed downstream the test section allows simulating different implantation levels of the model and therefore recovering the cavitation performances as well. The present work introduces first the hydraulic circuit and its main capabilities. The measurement instruments installed in the aim of recovering the full testing conditions and particularly the hydraulic power of the testing model are presented as well. Then, the specific philosophy of the real-time automatic regulation system is detailed. Finally, the measured characteristics of a fully-equipped laboratory prototype, consisting of a new axial counter-rotating micro-hydro turbine to recover the energy lost in release valves of water supply networks, are provided. The main contribution of this work is to introduce a state-of-the-art approach of an automatic regulation for hydraulic test rigs. The full capabilities of a NI cRIO 9074 are used to develop an autonomous regulation system based on real time measurements in order to keep constant the value of the desired parameters. In addition, a special care is put on the wireless communication architecture between the hydraulic test rig and further measurements/monitoring systems (e.g. testing model control system). Meanwhile, the test rig control system manages a dedicated cloud of variables and makes them available for client systems. Finally, such approach allows for safe data centralization and storage on hydraulic turbomachinery model testing.