2011

Thermal Management Tools for Propulsion System Trade Studies and Analysis

Applications include modeling and simulation in building and data center cooling analysis, and in ground-based vehicle studies.

Energy-related subsystems in modern aircraft are more tightly coupled with less design margin. These subsystems include thermal management subsystems, vehicle electric power generation and distribution, aircraft engines, and flight control. Tighter coupling, lower design margins, and higher system complexity all make preliminary trade studies difficult. A suite of thermal management analysis tools has been developed to facilitate trade studies during preliminary design of air-vehicle propulsion systems.

Simulink blocksets (from MathWorks) for developing quasi-steady-state and transient system models of aircraft thermal management systems and related energy systems have been developed. These blocksets extend the Simulink modeling environment in the thermal sciences and aircraft systems disciplines. The blocksets include blocks for modeling aircraft system heat loads, heat exchangers, pumps, reservoirs, fuel tanks, and other components at varying levels of model fidelity.

The blocksets have been applied in a first-principles, physics-based modeling and simulation architecture for rapid prototyping of aircraft thermal management and related systems. They have been applied in representative modern aircraft thermal management system studies. The modeling and simulation architecture has also been used to conduct trade studies in a vehicle level model that incorporates coupling effects among the aircraft mission, engine cycle, fuel, and multi-phase heat-transfer materials.

This work was done by Kevin McCarthy of PC Krause & Associates and Ernie Hodge of Modelogics for Glenn Research Center. For further information contact Dr. Jeffrey Dalton, Avetec Chief Technology Officer, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Inquiries concerning rights for the commercial use of this invention should be addressed to NASA Glenn Research Center, Innovative Partnerships Office, Attn: Steve Fedor, Mail Stop 4–8, 21000 Brookpark Road, Cleveland, Ohio 44135. Refer to LEW-18463-1/4-1.