This case study concerns product development of a turbocharger for automotive applications. The aim of the project is to improve the turbine efficiency of the turbocharger.
Three non-dimensional parameters that described the geometry of the turbine were defined.
A response surface experiment was conducted on a turbocharger design involving the three non-dimensional parameters. This provided a model that described the turbine efficiency as a function of the three non-dimensional parameters and enabled the geometry of the turbine to be defined such that optimum efficiency could be achieved.
Prototype turbochargers with dimensions providing optimum efficiency were tested and the efficiencies proved to be equal to those predicted.
Optimum performance of the turbocharge could be obtained thereby maximising power output of the turbine. The use of non-dimensional parameters in the experimentation and modelling meant that the results could be applied across a range of scales of turbocharger and not just the product range tested. This saved significant time and resources by reducing engine testing and design iterations.