This paper describes our approach and experiences in constructing the Turbine Auto–Designer (TAD), an automated concurrent design system for aircraft engine turbines. In TAD, the design process is modeled based on the computer programs of a representative design system. It integrates three domains of the manual design process: preliminary design, detailed aerodynamic design, and detailed mechanical design.
The manual design of turbines is an iterative redesign process involving the use of many sets of Computer Aided–Engineering (CAE) programs. The entire design process is modeled at four levels: analysis, automation, optimization, and concurrency. TAD is implemented with Engineous, a generic software shell for engineering design. Parts of TAD are already in use in day–to–day design practice for low–pressure turbines. In many cases of preliminary design, TAD can obtain better results quicker than the optimum obtained manually. Results also show that, for detailed aerodynamic analysis, the system can reduce the cycle time from days to hours.