NTRS - NASA Technical Reports Server

Back to Results
Improved Hypersonic Inlet Performance Using Validated Strut Compression DesignsAerojet is currently executing two Strutjet propulsion contracts: one a Rocket Based Combined Cycle (RBCC) engine for a NASA-Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) Advanced Reusable Transportation Technology (ARTT) program, the second a Dual Mode Ram/Scramjet engine for a USAF Wright Laboratories Storable Fuel Scramjet Flow Path Concepts program. The engines employed in both programs operate at supersonic and low hypersonic speeds and use inlets employing forebody external and sidewall compression. Aerojet has developed and validated a successful design methodology applicable to these inlet types. Design features include an integrated vehicle forebody, external side compression struts, strut sidewall and throat bleed, a throat shock trap, and variable geometry internal contraction. Computation Fluid Dynamic (CFD) predictions and test data show these inlets allow substantially increased flow turning angles over other designs. These increased flow turning angles allow shorter and lighter engines than current designs, which in turn enables higher performing vehicles with broad operating characteristics. This paper describes the designs of two different inlets evaluated by the NASA-MSFC and USAF programs, discusses the results of wind tunnel tests performed by NASA-Lewis Research Center, and provides correlations of test data with CFD predictions. Parameters of interest include low Mach number starting capability, start sensitivity as a function of back pressure at various contraction ratios, flow turning angles, strut and throat bleed effects, and pressure recovery at various Mach numbers.
Document ID
Document Type
Bulman, M. J. (Aerojet Sacramento, CA United States)
Stout, P. W. (Aerojet Sacramento, CA United States)
Fernandez, R. (Aerojet Sacramento, CA United States)
Date Acquired
August 19, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1997
Subject Category
Meeting Information
Airbreathing Propulsion(West Pam Beach, FL)
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits