Journal of Failure Analysis and Prevention

, Volume 16, Issue 5, pp 790–802

# A Simulation Study on the Transient Motion of a Reciprocating Compressor Suction Valve Under Complicated Conditions

• Jinjie Zhang
• Yao Wang
• Xin Li
• Zhinong Jiang
• Yinan Xie
• Qunxiong Zhu
Technical Article---Peer-Reviewed

## Abstract

Stepless capacity control technology for reciprocating compressors is a key contributor to energy saving for the petroleum and petrochemical industries. Devices called “unloaders” are utilized to control the capacity of the compressor by forcibly holding the suction valves open during a variable portion of the compression stroke to control the compressor output. This approach can also lead to various faults of the suction valve. This paper describes the simulation and experimental studies of the transient motion of suction valves under stepless capacity control. Beginning with mathematical models for the normal cycle, improved models of a reciprocating compressor under stepless capacity control have been built. A simulation study of the working process of a double-acting reciprocating compressor has been completed. Theoretical formulas for the transient motion of the valve plate under complicated conditions and the dynamic pressure in the cylinder are compared with the experimental results. Based on the above simulations, a finite element analysis of the valve plate and valve seat has been completed. The experiment results showed that the vibration of the compressor cylinder under complicated conditions was consistent with numerical simulation results. Research presented in this paper is significant in providing tools for diagnosing faults in order to optimize the design of reciprocating compressors that utilize a stepless capacity control system.

## Keywords

Reciprocating compressor Stepless capacity control Mathematical models Numerical simulation Complicated conditions

## List of Symbols

A

Flow cross section area of valve (m2)

B

The heat exchange between cylinder and surroundings of unit area and unit time (J m−2 s−1)

C

Represents $$B2\pi r_{cy} r_{crk}$$

c

Specific heat of gas (J kg−1 K−1)

F

Force (N)

h

Enthalpy (J kg−1)

K

Equivalent stiffness (N m−1)

k

Ratio of specific heat of gas

L

Displacement (m)

l

Height of gas in valve (m)

M

Mass (kg)

p

Pressure (kPa)

Q

Heat transfer with the surroundings (J)

R

Gas constant

r

S

Area (m2)

t

Time (s)

T

Temperature (°C)

U

Internal energy of gas (J)

V

Volume (m3)

v

Velocity (m s−1)

W

Work energy (J)

z

The total degrees of freedom of gas molecule divide two

## Greek Symbols

$$\alpha$$

The valve flow coefficient

$$\beta$$

Coefficient of applied force of gas

$$\omega$$

Angular velocity

$$\lambda$$

Ratio between the crankshaft radius and connecting rod length

## Subscripts

colh

Clearance volume

crk

Crank shaft

cy

Cylinder

dv

Discharge valve

dvbp

Buffer plate of discharge valve

dvo

Outlet of discharge valve

dvp

Valve plate of discharge valve

dvp-bp

Between the buffer plate and valve plate of discharge valve

dvsp

Spring of discharge valve

dvspe

Spring initial compression of discharge valve

gas

Gas

p

Constant pressure

pis

Piston

sv

Suction valve

svbp

Buffer plate of suction valve

svg

Gas in suction valve

svi

Inlet of suction valve

svig

Gas in the inlet of suction valve

svo

Outlet of suction valve

svog

Gas in the outlet of suction valve

svp

Valve plate of suction valve

svp-bp

Between the buffer plate and valve plate of suction valve

svsp

Spring of suction valve

svspe

Spring Initial compression of suction valve

V

Constant volume

## Notes

### Acknowledgments

This work was Supported by the National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program) under Grant No.2012CB026000, the National High Technology Research and Development Program of China (863 Program) under Grant No.2014AA041806, and the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (ZY1617).

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## Authors and Affiliations

• Jinjie Zhang
• 1
• Yao Wang
• 2
• Xin Li
• 3
• Zhinong Jiang
• 2
• Yinan Xie
• 2
• Qunxiong Zhu
• 1
1. 1.Institute of Information Science and TechnologyBeijing University of Chemical TechnologyBeijingChina
2. 2.Diagnosis and Self-Recovering Engineering Research CenterBeijing University of Chemical TechnologyBeijingChina
3. 3.Safety Detection and Intelligent System R&DBeijing Rail and Transit Design & Research Institute CO., LTDBeijingChina