First and Second Law Analysis of Future Aircraft Engines
Journal article, 2014
An optimal baseline turbofan cycle designed for a performance level expected to be available around year 2050 is established. Detailed performance data are given in take-off, top of climb, and cruise to support the analysis. The losses are analyzed, based on a combined use of the first and second law of thermodynamics, in order to establish a basis for a discussion on future radical engine concepts and to quantify loss levels of very high performance engines. In light of the performance of the future baseline engine, three radical cycles designed to reduce the observed major loss sources are introduced. The combined use of a first and second law analysis of an open rotor engine, an intercooled recuperated engine, and an engine working with a pulse detonation combustion core is presented. In the past, virtually no attention has been paid to the systematic quantification of the irreversibility rates of such radical concepts. Previous research on this topic has concentrated on the analysis of the turbojet and the turbofan engine. In the developed framework, the irreversibility rates are quantified through the calculation of the exergy destruction per unit time. A striking strength of the analysis is that it establishes a common currency for comparing losses originating from very different physical sources of irreversibility. This substantially reduces the complexity of analyzing and comparing losses in aero engines. In particular, the analysis sheds new light on how the intercooled recuperated engine establishes its performance benefits.