A general thermodynamic analytical program was developed to investigate the impact of secondary power system (SPS) improvements on mission effectiveness and weapon power generation in a tactical aircraft. Preliminary analysis revealed, among other things, that the engine performance was more sensitive to pneumatic bleed than to shaft power extraction and the use of a More Electric secondary power system resulted in a savings in fuel consumption. Using the total fuel consumption of the conventional aircraft for a typical tactical mission as a baseline, the fuel savings could potentially offer two alternatives to improved performance. The first alternative addresses multiple combat mission legs with varying altitudes and consequently a longer combat duration. The second alternative addresses the use of excess power to activate an airborne weapon platform and subsequent evaluation of thermal management limitations posed by several exploratory concepts. Three different thermal management approaches were considered for a typical airborne solid-state laser based power system with a laser output power of 100 kW. Some of the consequences of using these thermal management concepts on the mission legs in a tactical mission from a time-constraint and mass-constraint points of view are also presented.

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