Research Papers

Application of a Navier–Stokes Solver to the Study of Open Rotor Aerodynamics

[+] Author and Article Information
Alexios Zachariadis, Cesare A. Hall

Whittle Laboratory, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB3 0DY, UK

J. Turbomach 133(3), 031025 (Dec 07, 2010) (11 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4001246 History: Received September 30, 2009; Revised December 21, 2009; Published December 07, 2010; Online December 07, 2010

This paper establishes a proven computational approach for open rotor configurations that can be used as a basis for further studies involving open rotor aerodynamics and design. Many of the difficulties encountered in the application of computational fluid dynamics to an open rotor engine arise due to the removal of the casing that is present in conventional aero-engine turbomachinery. In this work, an advanced three-dimensional Navier–Stokes solver is applied to the open rotor. The approach needed to accurately capture the aerodynamics is investigated with particular attention to the mesh configuration and the specification of the boundary conditions. A new three-step meshing strategy for generating the mesh and the most suitable type of far-field boundary condition are discussed. A control volume analysis approach is proposed for post-processing the numerical results for the rotor performance. The capabilities of the solver and the applied methodology are demonstrated at both cruise and take-off operating conditions. The comparison of the computational results with the experimental measurements shows good agreement for both data trend and magnitudes.

Copyright © 2011 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figure 16

Experimental counter-rotating propeller efficiency maps at cruise and take-off conditions

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Figure 17

Front rotor cruise performance as a function of the rotor incidence at r/R=0.7

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Figure 18

Experimental and calculated distributions of the pressure coefficient on the rig bullet surface

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Figure 19

Meridional contours of the radial velocity around the rig bullet surface and illustration of the streamtube contraction at (a) cruise and (b) take-off conditions

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Figure 20

Predicted sensitivity of the open rotor performance to the front rotor pitch angle setting

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Figure 1

Rig-140 test configuration

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Figure 2

Overview of the straight blade geometry

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Figure 3

Summary of the blade geometrical characteristics

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Figure 4

Overview of the three-zone computational domain for Rig-140 counter-rotating open rotor calculations

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Figure 5

Three-step radial mesh generation approach

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Figure 6

Sensitivity of the radial mesh density to the accuracy of the stage absolute stagnation pressure ratio at take-off conditions

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Figure 7

Overview of the rotor tip mesh

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Figure 8

Isometric view of the computational mesh

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Figure 9

Overview of the computational domain and specification of the boundary conditions

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Figure 10

Influence of the domain radial size and far-field boundary condition on the axial Mach number at the front rotor inlet and outlet at (a) cruise and (b) take-off

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Figure 11

Velocity triangles for a counter-rotating open rotor at (a) cruise and (b) take-off conditions

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Figure 12

Proposed control volume analysis for evaluating the rotor performance parameters

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Figure 13

Details of the front and rear rotor control volumes

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Figure 14

Experimental and calculated variation in the total thrust and power coefficients at cruise and take-off conditions

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Figure 15

Experimental and calculated variation in the counter-rotating propeller efficiency and total power coefficient at cruise and take-off conditions

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Figure 21

Temperature-entropy diagram for the compression process



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