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Aerospace, Volume 6, Issue 7 (July 2019)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) Gas-path diagnostics is an essential part of gas turbine condition-based maintenance (CBM). [...] Read more.
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Open AccessReview
A Review on Gas Turbine Gas-Path Diagnostics: State-of-the-Art Methods, Challenges and Opportunities
Received: 12 June 2019 / Revised: 8 July 2019 / Accepted: 14 July 2019 / Published: 23 July 2019
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Abstract
Gas-path diagnostics is an essential part of gas turbine (GT) condition-based maintenance (CBM). There exists extensive literature on GT gas-path diagnostics and a variety of methods have been introduced. The fundamental limitations of the conventional methods such as the inability to deal with [...] Read more.
Gas-path diagnostics is an essential part of gas turbine (GT) condition-based maintenance (CBM). There exists extensive literature on GT gas-path diagnostics and a variety of methods have been introduced. The fundamental limitations of the conventional methods such as the inability to deal with the nonlinear engine behavior, measurement uncertainty, simultaneous faults, and the limited number of sensors available remain the driving force for exploring more advanced techniques. This review aims to provide a critical survey of the existing literature produced in the area over the past few decades. In the first section, the issue of GT degradation is addressed, aiming to identify the type of physical faults that degrade a gas turbine performance, which gas-path faults contribute more significantly to the overall performance loss, and which specific components often encounter these faults. A brief overview is then given about the inconsistencies in the literature on gas-path diagnostics followed by a discussion of the various challenges against successful gas-path diagnostics and the major desirable characteristics that an advanced fault diagnostic technique should ideally possess. At this point, the available fault diagnostic methods are thoroughly reviewed, and their strengths and weaknesses summarized. Artificial intelligence (AI) based and hybrid diagnostic methods have received a great deal of attention due to their promising potentials to address the above-mentioned limitations along with providing accurate diagnostic results. Moreover, the available validation techniques that system developers used in the past to evaluate the performance of their proposed diagnostic algorithms are discussed. Finally, concluding remarks and recommendations for further investigations are provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Progress in Jet Engine Technology)
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Open AccessArticle
Numerical Simulations of Combustion Instabilities in a Combustor with an Augmentor-Like Geometry
Received: 17 May 2019 / Revised: 9 July 2019 / Accepted: 18 July 2019 / Published: 21 July 2019
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Abstract
With the goal of assessing the capability of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to simulate combustion instabilities, the present work considers a premixed, bluff-body-stabilized combustor with well-defined inlet and outlet boundary conditions. The present simulations produce flow behaviors in good qualitative agreement with experimental [...] Read more.
With the goal of assessing the capability of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) to simulate combustion instabilities, the present work considers a premixed, bluff-body-stabilized combustor with well-defined inlet and outlet boundary conditions. The present simulations produce flow behaviors in good qualitative agreement with experimental observations. Notably, the flame flapping and standing acoustic waves seen in the experiments are reproduced by the simulations. Moreover, present predictions for the dominant instability frequency have an error of 7% and those of the rmspressure fluctuations show an error of 16%. In addition, an analysis of simulation results for the limit cycle complements previous experimental analyses by supporting the presence of an active frequency-locking mechanism. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Small-Scale Static Fire Tests of 3D Printing Hybrid Rocket Fuel Grains Produced from Different Materials
Received: 1 March 2019 / Revised: 1 July 2019 / Accepted: 10 July 2019 / Published: 15 July 2019
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Abstract
The last decade has seen an almost exponential increase in the number of rocket launches for sounding missions or for delivering payloads into low Earth orbits. The emergence of new technologies like rapid prototyping, including 3D printing, is changing the approach to rocket [...] Read more.
The last decade has seen an almost exponential increase in the number of rocket launches for sounding missions or for delivering payloads into low Earth orbits. The emergence of new technologies like rapid prototyping, including 3D printing, is changing the approach to rocket motor design. This project conducted a series of small-scale static fire tests of fused deposition manufacturing hybrid rocket motors that were designed to explore the performance of a variety of commonly available fused deposition manufacturing materials. These materials included acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, acrylonitrile styrene acrylate, polylactic acid (PLA), polypropylene, polyethylene terephthalate glycol, Nylon, and AL (PLA with aluminum particles). To test the performance of small-scale fuel grains, a modular apparatus with a range of sensors fitted to it was designed and manufactured. The small-scale testing performed static burns on two fuel grains of each material with initial dimensions of 100 mm long and 20 mm in diameter with a 6 mm straight circular combustion port. The focus of this study was mainly on the regression rates of each material of fuel grains. Acrylonitrile styrene acrylate and Nylon showed the highest regression rates, while the polyethylene terephthalate glycol regression rates were relatively poor. Also, the acrylonitrile butadiene styrene and acrylonitrile styrene acrylate demonstrating relatively high regression rates when compared to existing hybrid fuels like hydroxyl-terminated polybutadiene. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Departure and Arrival Routes Optimization Near Large Airports
Received: 17 June 2019 / Revised: 1 July 2019 / Accepted: 9 July 2019 / Published: 12 July 2019
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Abstract
The bottleneck of today’s airspace is the Terminal Maneuvering Areas (TMA), where aircraft leave their routes to descend to an airport or take off and reach the en-route sector. To avoid congestion in these areas, an efficient design of departure and arrival routes [...] Read more.
The bottleneck of today’s airspace is the Terminal Maneuvering Areas (TMA), where aircraft leave their routes to descend to an airport or take off and reach the en-route sector. To avoid congestion in these areas, an efficient design of departure and arrival routes is necessary. In this paper, a solution for designing departure and arrival routes is proposed, which takes into account the runway configuration, the surroundings of the airport and operational constraints such as limited slopes or turn angles. The routes consist of two parts: a horizontal path in a graph constructed by sampling the TMA around the runway, to which is associated a cone of altitudes. The set of all routes is optimized by the Simulated Annealing metaheuristic. In the process and at each iteration, each route is computed by defining adequately the cost of the arcs in the graph and then searching a path on it. The costs are chosen so as to avoid zigzag behaviors as much as possible. Two tests were performed, one on an instance taken from the literature and the other on an artificial problem designed specifically to test this approach. The obtained results are satisfying with regard to the current state of air operations management and constraints. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aircraft Trajectory Design and Optimization)
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Open AccessArticle
Computational Analysis of 3D Lattice Structures for Skin in Real-Scale Camber Morphing Aircraft
Received: 26 April 2019 / Revised: 3 June 2019 / Accepted: 15 June 2019 / Published: 7 July 2019
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Abstract
Conventional or fixed wings require a certain thickness of skin material selection that guarantees structurally reliable strength under expected aerodynamic loadings. However, skin structures of morphing wings need to be flexible as well as stiff enough to deal with multi-axial structural stresses from [...] Read more.
Conventional or fixed wings require a certain thickness of skin material selection that guarantees structurally reliable strength under expected aerodynamic loadings. However, skin structures of morphing wings need to be flexible as well as stiff enough to deal with multi-axial structural stresses from changed geometry and the coupled aerodynamic loadings. Many works in the design of skin structures for morphing wings take the approach either of only geometric compliance or a simplified model that does not fully represent 3D real-scale wing models. Thus, the main theme of this study is (1) to numerically identify the multi-axial stress, strain, and deformation of skin in a camber morphing wing aircraft under both structure and aerodynamic loadings, and then (2) to show the effectiveness of a direct approach that uses 3D lattice structures for skin. Various lattice structures and their direct 3D wing models have been numerically analyzed for advanced skin design. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Novel Self-Deployable Solar Sail System Activated by Shape Memory Alloys
Received: 30 April 2019 / Revised: 29 June 2019 / Accepted: 2 July 2019 / Published: 5 July 2019
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Abstract
This work deals with the feasibility and reliability about the use of shape memory alloys (SMAs) as mechanical actuators for solar sail self-deployment instead of heavy and bulky mechanical booms. Solar sails exploit radiation pressure a as propulsion system for the exploration of [...] Read more.
This work deals with the feasibility and reliability about the use of shape memory alloys (SMAs) as mechanical actuators for solar sail self-deployment instead of heavy and bulky mechanical booms. Solar sails exploit radiation pressure a as propulsion system for the exploration of the solar system. Sunlight is used to propel space vehicles by reflecting solar photons from a large and light-weight material, so that no propellant is required for primary propulsion. In this work, different small-scale solar sail prototypes (SSP) were studied, manufactured, and tested for bending and in three different environmental conditions to simulate as much as possible the real operating conditions where the solar sails work. Kapton is the most suitable material for sail production and, in the space missions till now, activated booms as deployment systems have always been used. In the present work for the activation of the SMA elements some visible lamps have been employed to simulate the solar radiation and time-temperature diagrams have been acquired for different sail geometries and environmental conditions. Heat transfer mechanisms have been discussed and the minimum distance from the sun allowing the full self-deployment of the sail have also been calculated. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Virtual Test Bench of a Parallel Hybrid Propulsion System for UAVs
Received: 4 June 2019 / Revised: 25 June 2019 / Accepted: 27 June 2019 / Published: 2 July 2019
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Abstract
The article proposes the design of a test bench simulator to test a parallel hybrid propulsion architecture for aeronautical applications. The virtual test bench simulates, in a scaled version, the real test bench, designed for a power of about 0.4 MW. After presenting [...] Read more.
The article proposes the design of a test bench simulator to test a parallel hybrid propulsion architecture for aeronautical applications. The virtual test bench simulates, in a scaled version, the real test bench, designed for a power of about 0.4 MW. After presenting the architecture of the real propulsion system, the virtual test bench is described. The real system is basically composed by a paralleled electric motor and thermal engine which provide mechanical power to the propeller. Saving cost and volume the test bench is composed by electric motors simulates the behaviors of the real propulsion system despite their differences. The dynamic relationships expressing the transmission of torque between the components, and the method of down-sizing the power delivered are highlighted. Particular attention is given to the real inertia actions that must be simulated on the virtual test bench. An application of the proposed methodology is then presented through the simulation of the take-off phase, and the torque time histories, angular velocities and powers generated on the virtual test bench are used to verify the corresponding time histories expected in the real system. Full article
(This article belongs to the collection Unmanned Aerial Systems)
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Open AccessArticle
Fault Tolerant Control of an Experimental Flexible Wing
Received: 6 June 2019 / Revised: 25 June 2019 / Accepted: 27 June 2019 / Published: 30 June 2019
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Abstract
Active control techniques are a key factor in today’s aircraft developments to reduce structural loads and thereby enable highly efficient aircraft designs. Likewise, increasing the autonomy of aircraft systems aims to maintain the highest degree of operational performance also in fault scenarios. Motivated [...] Read more.
Active control techniques are a key factor in today’s aircraft developments to reduce structural loads and thereby enable highly efficient aircraft designs. Likewise, increasing the autonomy of aircraft systems aims to maintain the highest degree of operational performance also in fault scenarios. Motivated by these two aspects, this article describes the design and validation of a fault tolerant gust load alleviation control system on a flexible wing in a wind tunnel. The baseline gust load alleviation controller isolates and damps the weakly damped first wing bending mode. The mode isolation is performed via an H 2 -optimal blending of control inputs and measurement outputs, which allows for the design of a simple single-input single-output controller to actively damp the mode. To handle actuator faults, a control allocation scheme based on quadratic programming is implemented, which distributes the required control energy to the remaining available control surfaces. The control allocation is triggered in fault scenarios by a fault detection scheme developed to monitor the actuators using nullspace based filter design techniques. Finally, the fault tolerant control scheme is verified by wind tunnel experiments. Full article
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Aerospace EISSN 2226-4310 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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