Uncertainty in gas turbine thermo-fluid modelling and its impact on performance calculations and emissions predictions at aircraft system level
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2012

In this article, various aspects of thermo-fluid modelling for gas turbines are described and the impact on performance calculations and emissions predictions at aircraft system level is assessed. Accurate and reliable fluid modelling is essential for any gas turbine performance simulation software as it provides a robust foundation for building advanced multidisciplinary modelling capabilities. Caloric properties for generic and semi-generic gas turbine performance simulation codes can be calculated at various levels of fidelity; selection of the fidelity level is dependent upon the objectives of the simulation and execution time constraints. However, rigorous fluid modelling may not necessarily improve performance simulation accuracy unless all modelling assumptions and sources of uncertainty are aligned to the same level. A comprehensive analysis of thermo-fluid modelling for gas turbines is presented, and the fluid models developed are discussed in detail. Common technical models, used for calculating caloric properties, are compared while typical assumptions made in fluid modelling, and the uncertainties induced, are examined. Several analyses, which demonstrate the effects of composition, temperature, and pressure on caloric properties of working media for gas turbines, are presented. The working media examined include dry air and combustion products for various fuels and H/C ratios. The uncertainty induced in calculations by (a) using common technical models for evaluating fluid caloric properties and (b) ignoring dissociation effects is examined at three different levels: (i) component level, (ii) engine level, and (iii) aircraft system level. An attempt is made to shed light on the trade-off between improving the accuracy of a fluid model and the accuracy of a multi-disciplinary simulation at aircraft system level, against computational time penalties. The validity of the ideal gas assumption for future turbofan engines and novel propulsion cycles is discussed. The results obtained demonstrate that accurate modelling of the working fluid is essential, especially for assessing novel and/or aggressive cycles at aircraft system level. Where radical design space exploration is concerned, improving the accuracy of the fluid model will need to be carefully balanced with the computational time penalties involved.


thermo-fluid modelling

system analysis



gas turbine performance


Konstantinos Kyprianidis

Chalmers, Tillämpad mekanik, Strömningslära

Vishal Sethi

Cranfield University

Stephen Ogaji

Cranfield University

Pericles Pilidis

Cranfield University

Riti Singh

Cranfield University

Anestis Kalfas

Aristotelio Panepistimio Thessalonikis

Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part G: Journal of Aerospace Engineering

0954-4100 (ISSN)

Vol. 226 2 163-181


Hållbar utveckling






Annan naturresursteknik

Strömningsmekanik och akustik


Grundläggande vetenskaper



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