The boundary layer on an axial-flow compressor stator blade has been measured using an ensemble-averaging technique. Although the mean velocity profiles appear to indicate fully developed turbulent flow, ensemble-averaged instantaneous profiles show the boundary layer to be highly unsteady and transitional over much of the blade chord. At a given chordwise position, variations in boundary-layer thickness with time of up to 150 percent were recorded. When compared to boundary-layer development on a similar blade in a two-dimensional cascade the stator blade boundary-layer growth was found to be much greater. The results indicate that extreme caution should be used in attempting to predict blade boundary-layer development from cascade test results or steady calculation procedures.

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