Research Papers: Gas Turbines: Aircraft Engine

Rotorcraft Engine Cycle Optimization at Mission Level

[+] Author and Article Information
Ioannis Goulos

e-mail: i.goulos@cranfield.ac.uk

Fabian Hempert

e-mail: fhempert@aol.com

Vishal Sethi

e-mail: v.sethi@cranfield.ac.uk

Vassilios Pachidis

e-mail: v.pachidis@cranfield.ac.uk
Department of Power & Propulsion,
Cranfield University,
Bedfordshire MK43 0AL, UK

Roberto d'Ippolito

e-mail: roberto.dippolito@noesissolutions.com

Massimo d'Auria

e-mail: massimo.dauria@noesissolutions.com
NOESIS Solutions,
Gaston Geenslaan, 11 B4,
Leuven 3001, Belgium

Contributed by the Aircraft Engine Committee of ASME for publication in the Journal of Engineering for Gas Turbines and Power. Manuscript received May 23, 2013; final manuscript received June 1, 2013; published online July 31, 2013. Editor: David Wisler.

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 135(9), 091202 (Jul 31, 2013) (10 pages) Paper No: GTP-13-1144; doi: 10.1115/1.4024870 History: Received May 23, 2013; Revised June 01, 2013

This work investigates the potential to reduce fuel consumption associated with civil rotorcraft operations at mission level, through optimization of the engine design point cycle parameters. An integrated simulation framework, comprising models applicable to rotorcraft flight dynamics, rotor blade aeroelasticity, and gas turbine performance, has been deployed. A comprehensive and computationally efficient optimization strategy, utilizing a novel particle-swarm method, has been structured. The developed methodology has been applied on a twin-engine light and a twin-engine medium rotorcraft configuration. The potential reduction in fuel consumption has been evaluated in the context of designated missions, representative of modern rotorcraft operations. Optimal engine design point cycle parameters, in terms of total mission fuel consumption, have been obtained. Pareto front models have been structured, describing the optimum interrelationship between maximum shaft power and mission fuel consumption. The acquired results suggest that, with respect to technological limitations, mission fuel economy can be improved with the deployment of design specifications leading to increased thermal efficiency, while simultaneously catering for sufficient performance to satisfy airworthiness certification requirements. The developed methodology enables the identification of optimum engine design specifications using a single design criterion; the respective trade-off between fuel economy and payload–range capacity, through maximum contingency shaft power, that the designer is prepared to accept.

Copyright © 2013 by ASME
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Fig. 1

Aeroelasticity decoupling tool (ADT) architecture

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Fig. 2

Emergency medical service (EMS) mission: (a) geographical definition and (b) time variations of deployed operational airspeed and AGL altitude

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Fig. 3

Search and rescue (SAR) mission: (a) geographical definition and (b) time variations of deployed operational airspeed and AGL altitude

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Fig. 4

Numerical performance comparison between PSO and SAE during mission fuel consumption optimization: (a) TEL rotorcraft/EMS mission and (b) TEM rotorcraft/SAR mission

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Fig. 5

Fuel flow comparison between baseline and optimally designed engine configurations: (a) TEL rotorcraft/EMS mission and (b) TEM rotorcraft/SAR mission

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Fig. 6

Pareto front models for maximum engine contingency power (DP shaft power) and total mission fuel consumption: (a) TEL rotorcraft/EMS mission and (b) TEM rotorcraft/SAR mission




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