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A Design Exploration of Natural Laminar Flow Applications for the SUSAN Electrofan ConceptA trade study supported by the NASA Convergent Aeronautics Solutions (CAS) Project is presently underway to explore the desirability, feasibility, and viability of a new vehicle concept. The vehicle under development is the SUbsonic Single Aft eNgine (SUSAN) Electrofan configuration, which is a subsonic regional jet with the transformative concept of combining wing-mounted distributed electrified aircraft propulsion with a single engine design. The multidisciplinary team is investigating several potential technologies that would help the SUSAN Electrofan configuration achieve its performance goals, one of which is the application of Natural Laminar Flow (NLF) to the main wing. The present computational study utilizes the Crossflow Attenuated Natural Laminar Flow (CATNLF) design method to reshape the wing airfoils to obtain significant extents of NLF at the cruise condition. Fully-turbulent and laminar designs were performed to quantify the aerodynamic performance potential of NLF on the SUSAN Electrofan configuration. The laminar design supported laminar flow on53% of the area of the wing upper surface, resulting in a 19count (8.8%) drag reduction for the wing-fuselage configuration. The near-cruise off-design characteristics are also studied and illustrate that the robust laminar design sustains an NLF performance benefit through perturbations in Mach and angle of attack. A discussion is also included on multidisciplinary implications of utilizing NLF for the configuration, including design, manufacturing, and operational considerations required to support NLF on the main wing, as well as the interaction between the potential wing-mounted boundary layer ingestion technology that is also being explored for the SUSAN Electrofan configuration.
Document ID
Document Type
Conference Paper
Michelle N Lynde
(Langley Research Center Hampton, Virginia, United States)
Richard L Campbell
(Langley Research Center Hampton, Virginia, United States)
Brett R Hiller
(Langley Research Center Hampton, Virginia, United States)
Date Acquired
November 16, 2021
Subject Category
Meeting Information
AIAA SciTech Forum(San Diego, CA)
Funding Number(s)
WBS: 081876.
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
Technical Review
NASA Peer Committee
Natural Laminar Flow
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