The contrarotating open rotor is, once again, being considered as an alternative to the advanced turbofan to address the growing pressure to cut aviation fuel consumption and carbon dioxide emissions. One of the key challenges is meeting community noise targets at takeoff. Previous open rotor designs are subject to poor efficiency at takeoff due to the presence of large regions of separated flow on the blades as a result of the high incidence needed to achieve the required thrust. This is a consequence of the fixed rotor rotational speed constraint typical of variable pitch propellers. Within the study described in this paper, an improved operation is proposed to improve performance and reduce rotor-rotor interaction noise at takeoff. Three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) calculations have been performed on an open rotor rig at a range of takeoff operating conditions. These have been complemented by analytical tone noise predictions to quantify the noise benefits of the approach. The results presented show that for a given thrust, a combination of reduced rotor pitch and increased rotor rotational speed can be used to reduce the incidence onto the front rotor blades. This is shown to eliminate regions of flow separation, reduce the front rotor tip loss and reduce the downstream stream tube contraction. The wakes from the front rotor are also made wider with lower velocity defect, which is found to lead to reduced interaction tone noise. Unfortunately, the necessary increase in blade speed leads to higher relative Mach numbers, which can increase rotor alone noise. In summary, the combined CFD and aeroacoustic analysis in this paper shows how careful operation of an open rotor at takeoff, with moderate levels of repitch and speed increase, can lead to improved front rotor efficiency as well as appreciably lower overall noise across all directivities.
Contrarotating Open Rotor Operation for Improved Aerodynamics and Noise at Takeoff
Contributed by the International Gas Turbine Institute (IGTI) of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF TURBOMACHINERY. Manuscript received January 11, 2012; final manuscript received February 27, 2012; published online March 25, 2013. Editor: David Wisler.
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Zachariadis, A., Hall, C., and Parry, A. B. (March 25, 2013). "Contrarotating Open Rotor Operation for Improved Aerodynamics and Noise at Takeoff." ASME. J. Turbomach. May 2013; 135(3): 031010. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4006778
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