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Research Papers: Gas Turbines: Aircraft Engine

System-Level Performance Estimation of a Pulse Detonation Based Hybrid Engine

[+] Author and Article Information
Jeffrey Goldmeer, Venkat Tangirala, Anthony Dean

 GE Global Research Center, 1 Research Circle, Niskayuna, NY 12309

J. Eng. Gas Turbines Power 130(1), 011201 (Dec 26, 2007) (8 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2771246 History: Received June 21, 2006; Revised May 01, 2007; Published December 26, 2007

A key application for a Pulse detonation engine concept is envisioned as a hybrid engine, which replaces the combustor in a conventional gas turbine with a pulse detonation combustor (PDC). A limit-cycle model, based on quasi-unsteady computational fluid dynamics simulations, was developed to estimate the performance of a pressure-rise PDC in a hybrid engine to power a subsonic engine core. The parametric space considered for simulations of the PDC operation includes the mechanical compression or the flight conditions that determine the inlet pressure and the inlet temperature conditions, fill fraction, and purge fraction. The PDC cycle process time scales, including the overall operating frequency, were determined via limit-cycle simulations. The methodology for the estimation of the performance of the PDC considers the unsteady effects of PDC operation. These metrics include a ratio of time-averaged exit total pressure to inlet total pressure and a ratio of mass-averaged exit total enthalpy to inlet total enthalpy. This information can be presented as a performance map for the PDC, which was then integrated into a system-level cycle analysis model, using GATECYCLE , to estimate the propulsive performance of the hybrid engine. Three different analyses were performed. The first was a validation of the model against published data for a specific impulse. The second examined the performance of a PDC versus a traditional Brayton cycle for a fixed combustor exit temperature; the results show an increased efficiency of the PDC relative to the Brayton cycle. The third analysis performed was a detailed parametric study of varying engine conditions to examine the performance of the hybrid engine. The analysis has shown that increasing the purge fraction, which can reduce the overall PDC exit temperature, can simultaneously provide small increases in the overall system efficiency.

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Copyright © 2008 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

Schematic of the hybrid PDE concept

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Figure 2

A schematic of the (a) pulse detonation device (PDE/PDC) for performance analysis; (b) a representative timing diagram of the pulse detonation cycle (the overbar of a parameter f denotes the time average of f, and ⟨f⟩ denotes the mass)

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Figure 3

Transfer functions for the total PR as a function of the total HR across a PDC

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Figure 4

Schematic of the validation model

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Figure 5

Comparison of Isp data for current model versus Perkins (33)

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Figure 6

Schematic of the hybrid Brayton/PDC cycle model

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Figure 7

Comparison of Brayton and PDC/Brayton cycle results

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Figure 8

Schematic of the hybrid PDC engine

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Figure 9

Effect of purge fraction on the system performance

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Figure 10

Effect of temperature rise on system performance

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