Politecnico di Torino - Corso Duca degli Abruzzi, 24 - 10129 Torino, ITALY

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Bladeless TurbomachineCompressorCompressoreenergy harvestingFluido multifaseMultiphase fluidsRecupero di energiatrasportationTurbinaTurbineTurbomacchina senza pale


The objective of the invention is to improve the performance of bladeless turbomachines for cost effective and high efficiency use in small-medium scale energy applications. The first high efficiency, reversible, “Tesla” or “bladeless” type turbomachinery, asymptotically approaching the predicted efficiency of the rotor alone, typically in the 80-90% range, for energy conversion or recovery, expansion or compression of fluids such as air, water, oil, organic liquids such a blood. The working fluid can be single-phase or multiphase such as water/steam mixtures. This invention brings the “bladeless” or “Tesla” boundary layer turbomachines to the same performances as the traditional ones, however the Tesla machines boast greater simplicity, robustness, and the absence of performance decay at lower scale.

Technical features

The innovation arises from the loss phenomena in the stator-rotor interaction in conventional bladeless turbomachines, which are among the main causes of the limited performance of such turbomachines. This constructive solution will allow bladeless turbomachines to establish themselves in small-scale distribution applications on the territory (e.g. mini-hydroelectric power stations, organic fluid handling, dental micro-actuators, etc.), also competing in the contexts of traditional turbomachinery. The ultra-efficient bladeless reversible turbomachine prototype, functioning both as a turbine and water pump, is under development at UNIGE and, demonstrated in a real work environment, reaching a TRL 5/6. It is expected that by applying the solutions of this invention, the isentropic expansion efficiency could be increased from 36% of a traditional Tesla turbine to 70 +%, competitive with traditional turbomachinery.

Possible Applications

  • Heat pumps and refrigeration systems;
  • Waste heat / Energy recovery using Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC);
  • Micro-hydro and energy storage;
  • Biomedical: blood pump and oxygen concentrators;
  • Multi-phase turbomachine applications.


  • High efficiency, reversible operation and low noise;
  • Erosion resistant;
  • Can handle Multi-phase fluid;
  • Easy manufacturing and maintenance.