The performance benefits of boundary layer ingestion (BLI) in the case of air vehicles powered by distributed propulsors have been documented and explored extensively by numerous studies. Therefore, it is well known that increased inlet flow distortion due to BLI can dramatically reduce these benefits. In this context, a methodology that enables the assessment of different propulsion architectures, whilst accounting for these aerodynamic integration issues, is studied in this paper.
To calculate the effects of BLI-induced distortion, parametric and parallel compressor approaches have been implemented into the propulsion system analysis. The propulsion architectures study introduces the concept of thrust split between propulsors and main engines and also examines an alternative propulsor configuration. In the system analysis, optimum configurations are defined using thrust-specific fuel consumption as figure of merit.
For determined operating conditions, the system analysis found an optimum configuration for 65 per cent of thrust delivered by the propulsor array, which was attributed mainly to the influence of the propulsor’s intake losses. An alternative propulsor design, which used the ejector pump effect to re-energize the boundary layer, and avoiding the detrimental effects of BLI are also cited in this work.
To summarize, this paper contributes with a general review of the research that has been undertaken to tackle the aforementioned aerodynamic integration issues and, in this way, make viable the implementation of distributed propulsion systems with BLI.
Laskaridis, P., Pachidis, V. and Pilidis, P. (2014), "Opportunities and challenges for distributed propulsion and boundary layer ingestion", Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, Vol. 86 No. 6, pp. 451-458. https://doi.org/10.1108/AEAT-05-2014-0067Download as .RIS
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