Defense

May 12, 2014

New software assists with next generation of advanced aircraft

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Deidre Ortiz
Arnold AFB, Tenn.

In the diagram, the first image is of a rotor fan surface geometry that was the result of the laser scan. The second image shows computational fluid dynamics mesh that was generated from the surface and then used to produce the CFD results. The third image shows a portion of the CFD flowfield and the pressure of the air as it goes through the fan.

New software is available to aid in providing acquisition support for Next Generation of Advanced Aircraft.

The CREATE program (Computational Research and Engineering For Acquisition Tools and Environments), an initiative funded by the Office of Secretary of Defense High Performance Computing†Modernization, is being used to develop next generation computational engineering tool sets for acquisition program engineers. The tools allow program engineers to take advantage of the growth in supercomputer power.

Tracy Donegan, supervisor in the Aerospace Testing Alliance†Integrated Test and Evaluation Department, said the CREATE program’s mission is to improve†Department†of Defense†acquisition processes by developing and deploying HPC-based computational engineering tools.

These tools include production-quality design and analysis software that’s both adaptable and maintainable, which will be beneficial in fully supporting initial design efforts for future tactical aircraft systems.

“One facet of the CREATE program is to initiate implementation of the emerging tools for a current acquisition application in order to assist the direction of the software development and test their suitability to realistic applications,” Donegan said.
The CREATE program is being applied locally at Arnold Engineering Development Complex†for the modeling of the TF34-GE-100A three dimensional full annulus fan within the nacelle, or its enclosure, for an accurate simulation of the inlet flow. This replicates the inlet flow distortion and†the fan response to the flow, as well as provides an analysis tool to assess fan operability.

Donegan explained that in order to model the full annulus fan, a detailed geometric representation was required.

“A single rotor blade for the TF-34 engine, which is the engine used in the A-10 close-air-support aircraft, was located at AEDC and scanned at the model shop using a local laser scanner,” Donegan said. “The set of rotor blade surface points generated from the laser scan was used by the design group in conjunction with engineering drawings to create a CAD model of the rotor blade for CFD†[computational fluid dynamics] analysis purposes.

“The engineering drawings on their own were for inspection purposes and did not contain sufficient information to model a blade from scratch,” she continued. “However, combined with a laser scan, enough information was available to model an entire blade array based on the single blade definition. The blade was incorporated into a rotor assembly and CFD solutions have been generated.”

A stator blade, the stationary blade of the fan, was also located, and the same process was used to complete the fan model.




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