Abstract

With the onset of affordable high-performance computing and cloud computing technologies, numerical methods like computational fluid dynamics and the finite element method are spreading to all the branches of industry. The ability to perform such analyses allows engineers to speed up development and refine designs even in early stages of development without the need for expensive experimental setups. However, it is desirable to build up confidence in these results by experimental validation. GE Aviation Czech has been extensively using a variety of CFD tools to predict flow behavior in the field of internal aerodynamics — especially for design of compressor and turbine stages, combustion chambers, inlet and exhaust systems. Development of a new aerobatic engine prototype and its installation is currently under way. A series of back-to-back analyses conducted to verify performance of the aerobatic inlet and compare it with a reference commuter engine installation. The results were presented in article “GT2018-76398 Analysis and Testing of an Aerobatic Turboprop Aircraft Inlet”. A variety of critical parameters such as ram factor, pressure losses, inlet heating, and engine inlet pressure and temperature distortions were investigated. These parameters affect engine performance, operability, and compressor stability. Afterward, a unique instrumentation, data acquisition chain, and test program was developed in cooperation with the airframer. This made it possible to record all of the required parameters during ground and flight tests, including basic aerobatic maneuvers. The recorded data was then used for validation of performed CFD analyses with boundary conditions matching the conditions of ground and flight tests. Confidence in CFD results backed up by well-matched test data allows to conduct future design changes without the need to perform additional expensive experimental trials.

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