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Challenges and Progress in Aerodynamic Design of Hybrid Wingbody Aircraft with Embedded EnginesWe summarize the contributions to high-fidelity capabilities for analysis and design of hybrid wingbody (HWB) configurations considered by NASA. Specifically, we focus on the embedded propulsion concepts of the N2-B and N3-X configurations, some of the future concepts seriously investigated by the NASA Fixed Wing Project. The objective is to develop the capability to compute the integrated propulsion and airframe system realistically in geometry and accurately in flow physics. In particular, the propulsion system (including the entire engine core-compressor, combustor, and turbine stages) is vastly more difficult and costly to simulate with the same level of fidelity as the external aerodynamics. Hence, we develop an accurate modeling approach that retains important physical parameters relevant to aerodynamic and propulsion analyses for evaluating the HWB concepts. Having the analytical capabilities at our disposal, concerns and issues that were considered to be critical for the HWB concepts can now be assessed reliably and systematically; assumptions invoked by previous studies were found to have serious consequences in our study. During this task, we establish firmly that aerodynamic analysis of a HWB concept without including installation of the propulsion system is far from realistic and can be misleading. Challenges in delivering the often-cited advantages that belong to the HWB are the focus of our study and are emphasized in this report. We have attempted to address these challenges and have had successes, which are summarized here. Some can have broad implications, such as the concept of flow conditioning for reducing flow distortion and the modeling of fan stages. The design optimization capability developed for improving the aerodynamic characteristics of the baseline HWB configurations is general and can be employed for other applications. Further improvement of the N3-X configuration can be expected by expanding the design space. Finally, the support of the System Analysis and Integration Element under the NASA Fixed Wing Project has enabled the development and helped deployment of the capabilities shown in this report.
Document ID
Document Type
Technical Memorandum (TM)
Liou, Meng-Sing
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Kim, Hyoungjin
(Science Applications International Corp. Brook Park, OH, United States)
Liou, May-Fun
(NASA Glenn Research Center Cleveland, OH United States)
Date Acquired
June 24, 2016
Publication Date
June 1, 2016
Subject Category
Aircraft Design, Testing And Performance
Aircraft Propulsion And Power
Report/Patent Number
Funding Number(s)
WBS: WBS 081876.
Distribution Limits
Public Use Permitted.
design optimization
adjoint method
propulsive performance
embedded propulsion system
NPSS model
aerodynamic performance
fan modeling
hybrid wingbody
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