The efficiency of power transmission systems is increasingly targeted with a view to reducing parasitic losses and improving specific fuel consumption (SFC). One of the effects associated with such parasitic losses is gear windage power loss and this mechanism can be a significant contributor to overall heat-to-oil within large civil aeroengines. The University of Nottingham Technology Centre in Gas Turbine Transmission Systems has been conducting experimental and computational research into spiral bevel gear windage applicable to an aeroengine internal gearbox (IGB).
The two-phase flows related to gear lubrication, shrouding and scavenging are complex. Good understanding of such flows can be used to balance lubrication needs with need to minimise oil volumes and parasitic losses. Previous computational investigations have primarily employed discrete phase modelling (DPM) to predict oil behaviour under the shroud [1, 2]. In this paper modelling capability has been investigated and extended through application of FLUENT’s Eulerian multiphase model. In addition, DPM modelling linked to FLUENT’s Lagrangian film model has been conducted. A control volume with periodic symmetry comprising a single tooth passage of the bevel gear has been modelled to keep the computational cost down.The results from both models are compared to each other and to available experimental visual data.
Both models are found to perform acceptably with the Eulerian multiphase model yielding results closer to those observed experimentally. The use of DPM with a Eulerian film model is suggested for future work and extension to a full 360° model is recommended.