The purpose of this article is to present a summary of recent study results on a turboelectric distributed propulsion vehicle concept named N3-X.
The turboelectric distributed propulsion system uses multiple electric motor-driven propulsors that are distributed on an aircraft. The power to drive these electric propulsors is generated by separately located gas turbine-driven electric generators on the airframe. To estimate the benefits associated with this new propulsion concept, a system analysis was performed on a hybrid-wing-body transport configuration to determine fuel burn (or energy usage), community noise and emissions reductions.
N3-X would be able to reduce energy consumption by 70-72 per cent compared to a reference vehicle, a Boeing 777-200LR, flying the same mission. Predictions for landing and take-off NOX are estimated to be 85 per cent less than the Tier 6-CAEP/6 standard. Two variants of the N3-X vehicle were examined for certification noise and found to have International Civil Aviation Organization Chapter 4 cumulative margins of 32EPNdB and 64EPNdB.
It is expected that the turboelectric distributed propulsion system may indeed provide unprecedented reductions in fuel/energy consumption, community noise and landing and take-off NOX emissions required in future transport aircraft.
The studied propulsion concept is a step change from the conventional propulsion system and addresses growing aviation demands and concerns on the environment and energy usage.
Dae Kim, H., L. Felder, J., T. Tong, M., J. Berton, J. and J. Haller, W. (2014), "Turboelectric distributed propulsion benefits on the N3-X vehicle", Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, Vol. 86 No. 6, pp. 558-561. https://doi.org/10.1108/AEAT-04-2014-0037Download as .RIS
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