Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Mechanical Engineering


Norman D. Love


In this study, the voltage output from a piezoelectric sensor placed in a test section is used to predict flow velocity changes. The piezoelectric made of PZT is thought to be advantageous due to its fast response time, potential durability at higher temperatures, and self-powered characteristics. Having said that this sensor could be implemented into the Hybrid Performance Project built by NETL to characterize and mitigate the probability of compressor surge and stall. The problem arises because of the added large volume between compressor and gas turbine and resultant changes to system fluid dynamics. The effect of the piezoelectric sensor shape and the influence of velocity profile on the output voltage is presented in this Thesis. In order to test the impact of piezoelectric shape, two different sized piezoelectric made of the same material are used. The impact of velocity profile is determined by exposing the piezoelectric to various velocity profiles with two different test sections. It is found that the voltage increases non-linearly as the velocity is increased for both piezoelectric and for both sets of velocity profiles. The larger piezoelectric, produces significantly more voltage than the smaller piezoelectric. The larger sensor has a maximum output voltage 4.8 times higher than the smaller piezoelectric when subjected to a uniform flow. This has been attributed to the increased size of the sensor that causes more drag force. Drag force is calculated to be 4.5 times greater for the larger sensor. When subjected to a less uniform velocity profile the larger sensor produces more than 120 times more voltage output compared to the small piezoelectric.




Received from ProQuest

File Size

85 pages

File Format


Rights Holder

Paul Perez