Exploring Influence of Static Engine Component Design Variables on System Level Performance
Conference contribution, 2015
To reach even better operating efficiency and reduced fuel burn, aero engine manufacturers adopt various innovative design methods. Many of the design methods rely on more integrated component and engine design. This makes it necessary for component suppliers such as GKN to be involved more tightly in the design process with the engine integrator. It also necessitates the need for the component developer to predict the effects that its components produce at the engine level so that the designs can be better prepared for future engine architectures. In this paper, an integrated design method is used to make preliminary exploration of the effect of aero-engine static structure design variations on engine performance. Studies were performed on a turbine rear structure (TRS) which is a part of the low pressure (LPT) turbine module. Pressure losses from an aerodynamically well designed TRS (with good LPT outflow match) and a poor LPT outflow matched TRS were coupled to an engine performance model to simulate the effect on engine SFC. The effect on engine SFC due to poor LPT outflow matched TRS coupling is more pronounced than that for aerodynamically well designed TRS. Also pressure drops for an aerodynamically well designed TRS are themselves dependant on structural design variations such as changes in geometrical variables. In this case, the influence of component design variation on SFC is substantial and the relevance of an integrated engine-component design is apparent. Judging from the preliminary findings it can be concluded that additional studies with more variables coupled can reveal further dependencies between engine and the component which are previously un-explored. This seeks to motivate the development of methods to create a multi-level, multi-physics optimization platform for hot engine structures which is the future aim of the project as a part of which this study was conducted.