Blade tip clearance (BTC) measurement and active clearance control (ACC) have been and continue to be a fundamental concern in turbomachinery, which are closely bound up with the efficiency and reliability. This paper addresses the BTC measurement and ACC experimental study based on eddy current pulse-trigger method (ECPTM). And the implementation of ACC by axial displacement of the blisk is novel and this paper is the first to present the technique. The purpose of this paper is three fold. The first portion of this paper addresses the BTC measurement in different rotating speeds based on the larger scale rig, where a high-bandwidth (100 kHz) eddy current sensor (HECS) is employed. The results show that the relative errors of BTC values are not much bigger than 20%. The result indicates that ECPTM is more generally applicable in the condition where the eddy current sensor (ECS) is insufficient sampling caused by the limit of narrow bandwidth, especially under the high linear velocity condition. The second portion of this paper describes the ACC system where an electro-hydraulic proportional position control system (EHPPCS) is employed as the actuator. EHPPCS has the advantages of small size, fast response, resistance to load stiffness, large output and simple operation, which is widely applicable to the automatic control system of industrial power. This system optimizes the geometry shapes of casing and the blade tips to create a linear relationship of BTC values related to the axial displacement of the rotor. The BTC values can be transferred into axial displacement of the rotor, and then a voltage/current-BTC values characteristic can be obtained by employing EHPPCS in different rotating speeds. Unfortunately, one of the core components of EHPPCS is an overflow valve with a non-linear and time-variable voltage/current-pressure characteristic. Besides, the pressure-axial displacement characteristic of tilting pad thrust bearing is also non-linear. All those non-linear characteristics make it unsatisfactory to use the conventional PID control algorithm to achieve effective control of the system, which cause many difficulties in controlling of axial displacement of the rotor. So the last portion of this paper is the experimental study on ACC based on the above system by adopting sliding mode adaptive control of nonlinear system (SMACNS). The BTC values have been obtained under different outlet pressures by changing the current in different rotating speeds. The results indicate that this approach has nice robustness and smooth controlled quantity, and can overcome the difficulty caused by nonlinearity, parameter uncertainty and load disturbance. And then, the precision verification and error analysis are made. However, this work is a proof-of-concept demonstration using a laboratory setup providing the basis for BTC active control and blade health monitoring (BHM) based on ECS.

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