The functions of the centrifugal compressor

The Centrifugal compressor





The functions of the centrifugal compressor

The centrifugal compressor works by Bernoulli’s’ fluid principle which states that an increase in the speed of the fluid through a column takes place simultaneously with the decrease in the pressure applied to the column or perhaps a reduction in the fluid potential energy. On the other hand, the compressor has an additional kinetic energy that is imparted to the fluid by an impeller that is always rotating thus supplying energy to the fluid. The kinetic energy from the impeller is then taken to the diffuser then converts the energy to pressure energy. Moreover, in the centrifugal compressor, the impeller is connected to a shaft that is driven by some mechanism (Barletta & Golden, 2004). The rotating impeller’s role is to draw air through the inlet that is situated at the center of the impeller and then directs the air through the end or periphery and thus increasing the kinetic energy of the air. Therefore, from the periphery, the air is then taken to the stationary passage known as the diffuser where the velocity of the air or the kinetic energy is reduced and therefore according to the Bernoulli’s principle the pressure of the air increases or perhaps the pressure energy created.

The components of centrifugal compressor

It has an inlet that allows the air from the atmosphere to enter the compressor which is then taken to the impeller. The impeller consists of a rotating motor that increases the velocity of the incoming air to increase its kinetic energy. The compressor has a passage in the form of a pipe that allows the free passage or movement of the fluid to the other level or perhaps the stage of action. The compressor has a diffuser whose role is to reduce the velocity of the fluid that comes from the impeller to increase the pressure energy. The other part is the outlet that directs the air or the fluid to the required direction for efficiency.

The efficiency of the centrifugal compressor

The compressor plays a major role in most industries by determining the throughput of the plant. If it used for refrigeration, then any variation will be measured regarding pressure and temperature control in the critical unit operations such as the flash vessels and the exothermic reactors (Jang, Cho, & Choi, 2007). The compressor is a major consumer of electric and motor energy. The efficiency is calculated based on the temperature and pressure of the system. The on-line calculation of effectiveness is very useful for the evaluation of the impact of the operating conditions and the cost of the machine. The pressure and pressure are measured in the suctions and again in the compressor discharge where the pressure and temperature will be measured. The information from the calculated efficiency assists the firm to makes improvement of the plant.

The diagram represents the compressor with various parts such as the outlet and the inlet. It is composed of diffuser and impeller. The diagram has a clear indication of the different parts of the process such as the outer casing (Jang, Cho, & Choi, 2007).

The advantages and safety

The compressor is of little weight and is very easy to design and manufacture, this makes it be the best machine for most plants globally, and many industries plant it quickly without any problem (Tomita, Hoshi, & Kanzaka, 2016). The other advantage is are reliable and have no complicated maintenance; this makes it very efficient to many industries since it does not increase the input cost of other machines which can place the company under serious spending when the breakdown occurs. The lesser the maintenance, the more efficient and economical the machine is and the more efficient it becomes. The compressor can generate a high ratio per stage of pressure than the axial flow compressor; this makes it efficient and reliable in the plants that need more pressure at an affordable cost. Lastly is suitable in most industries that require a continuous flow of the compressed air supply such as in the cases of the cooling units in the larger turbines that gathers heat more efficiently. The compressor is very safe to use when handled with care and efficient.

The disadvantages

It is only suitable for the very high amount of air compression and hence limited pressure, and thus not suitable for small industries who may desire to want the compressor (Tomita, Hoshi, & Kanzaka, 2016). This makes it non- market oriented. Second, they operate at a very high speed and therefore more vibrational mounts needed to get rid of the noise that might be created. This will increase some cost on the company to look for sound proof materials, and lastly, they are sensitive to the composition of the gas and when the composition is changed the compressor might not work well. Therefore it needs highly trained personnel to operate and control any structure that might arise.


The centrifugal compressor is one of the great engineering inventions that uses the fluids or rather air to work and perform its role. The machine operates on the principle of Bernoulli’s of the balance of air and speed to create a more pressure system. The whole of the device is used in the plant industries that uses the compression methods to achieve its objectives and for cooling systems. The compressor has both the advantage and disadvantage that makes it operate smoothly and also allows the user to work with caution (Tomita, Hoshi, & Kanzaka, 2016).


Barletta, T., & Golden, S. W. (2004). Centrifugal compressor operations. PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY QUARTERLY., 9, 113-120.

Jang, S. M., Cho, H. W., & Choi, S. K. (2007). Design and analysis of a high-speed brushless DC motor for the centrifugal compressor. IEEE Transactions on Magnetics, 43(6), 2573-2575.

Tomita, I., Hoshi, T., & Kanzaka, T. (2016). U.S. Patent No. 9,494,160. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

All Rights Reserved,