Special Issue "Making Aviation Environmentally Sustainable, Selected Proceedings of the 2nd ECATS Conference"

A special issue of Aerospace (ISSN 2226-4310).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 May 2017).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Simon Blakey
Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Sheffield, Mappin Street, Sheffield, S1 3JD, UK
Interests: fuel thermal stability; alternative fuels; combustion system efficiency; experimental design
Dr. Sigrun Matthes
Website
Guest Editor
Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR), Institut für Physik der Atmosphäre, Erdsystem-Modellierung, Münchner Straße 20, 82234 Oberpfaffenhofen-Wessling, Germany
Interests: aviation climate impact and mitigation; environmentally-optimized aircraft trajectories; chemistry-climate modelling; green flight and interdependency modelling
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Mr. Paul Brok
Website
Guest Editor
Netherlands Aerospace Centre, Aerospace Operations Division, Environment & Policy Support Department, Anthony Fokkerweg 2, 1059 CM Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Interests: aviation environmental modelling and interdependencies, including past/current/future air traffic; airport and flight operations; air traffic management; aviation noise and emissions technology and impact; economics and market-based measures
Prof. Dr. Volker Grewe
Website
Guest Editor
1. Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR), German Aerospace Center, Institute of Atmospheric Physics (IPA), Oberpfaffenhofen, 82234 Wessling, Germany;
2. Delft University of Technology, Aerospace Engineering, Kluyverweg 1, 2629 HS Delft, The Netherlands
Interests: climate impact of aviation; atmospheric chemistry; technical and operational mitigation options
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Simon Christie
Website
Guest Editor
Dalton Research Institute, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, M1 5GD, UK
Interests: sustainable biofuels and alternative fuels in aviation; the characterization of emissions from the combustion of alternative fuels; the atmospheric impact of alternative fuels; local air quality: monitoring and health impact; lidar and remote sensing

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The high-level aim of ECATS is to help making aviation sustainable and thus foster the European Union’s overall environmental goals for aeronautics. This Special Issue will provide selected papers from the 2nd ECATS conference and will present research in four key areas of multi-disciplinary expertise: Alternative Fuels for Aviation, Climate Impact and Mitigation Concepts, Green Flights—Climate Optimal Flight Trajectory and Interdependency and Aviation Environmental Modelling.

This issue is cooperating with the international 2nd ECATS conference (http://www.ecats-network.eu/events/2nd-ecats-conference). It will give the opportunity to present state-of-the-art research, review recent achievements, and, at the same time, will provide a strategic perspective on future directions in environmentally sustainable aviation. All speakers presenting a paper at this conference can submit a manuscript for publication.

Dr. Simon Blakey
Dr. Sigrun Matthes
Mr. Paul Brok
Prof. Dr. Volker Grewe
Dr. Simon Christie
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Aerospace is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Open AccessArticle
Modelling Airport Pollutants Dispersion at High Resolution
Aerospace 2017, 4(3), 46; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace4030046 - 25 Aug 2017
Cited by 4
Abstract
Local air quality is a major concern for the population regularly exposed to high levels of air pollution. Due mainly to its aircraft engine activities during taxiing and take-off, the airport is often submitted to heterogeneous but important concentrations of NO x and [...] Read more.
Local air quality is a major concern for the population regularly exposed to high levels of air pollution. Due mainly to its aircraft engine activities during taxiing and take-off, the airport is often submitted to heterogeneous but important concentrations of NO x and Particulate Matter (PM). The study suggests an innovative approach to determining the air traffic impact on air quality at the scale of the airport, its runways, and its terminals, to be able to locate the persistent high-concentration spots, for example. The pollutant concentrations at 10 m resolution and 1 s time step are calculated in order to identify the most affected areas of an airport platform and their contributors. A real day of air traffic on a regional airport is simulated, using observations and aircraft trajectories data from radar streams. In order to estimate the aircraft emissions, the Air Transport Systems Evaluation Infrastructure (IESTA) is used. Regarding local air quality, IESTA relies on the non-hydrostatic meso-scale atmospheric model Meso-NH using its grid-nesting capabilities with three domains. The detailed cartography of the airport distinguishes between grassland, parking, and terminals, allowing the computation of exchanges of heat, water, and momentum between the different types of surfaces and the atmosphere as well as the interactions with the building using a drag force. The dynamic parameters like wind, temperature, turbulent kinetic energy, and pollutants concentration are computed at 10 m resolution over the 2 km × 4 km airport domain. The pollutants are considered in this preliminary study as passive tracers, without chemical reactions. This study aims at proving the feasibility of high-scale modelling over an airport with state-of-the-art physical models in order to better understand the repartition of pollutants over an airport, taking into account advection and turbulence in interactions with buildings and regional trends, emissions, Auxiliary Power Units (APU), taxiing, parking, take off. All these processes drive the model at each time step and are not averaged over one hour or more like in Gaussian or Lagrangian ones. This study is investigating the feasibility of high spatio-temporal air quality modelling for research purposes but not for operational forecasting. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
A Concept for Multi-Criteria Environmental Assessment of Aircraft Trajectories
Aerospace 2017, 4(3), 42; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace4030042 - 01 Aug 2017
Cited by 12
Abstract
Comprehensive assessment of the environmental aspects of flight movements is of increasing interest to the aviation sector as a potential input for developing sustainable aviation strategies that consider climate impact, air quality and noise issues simultaneously. However, comprehensive assessments of all three environmental [...] Read more.
Comprehensive assessment of the environmental aspects of flight movements is of increasing interest to the aviation sector as a potential input for developing sustainable aviation strategies that consider climate impact, air quality and noise issues simultaneously. However, comprehensive assessments of all three environmental aspects do not yet exist and are in particular not yet operational practice in flight planning. The purpose of this study is to present a methodology which allows to establish a multi-criteria environmental impact assessment directly in the flight planning process. The method expands a concept developed for climate optimisation of aircraft trajectories, by representing additionally air quality and noise impacts as additional criteria or dimensions, together with climate impact of aircraft trajectory. We present the mathematical framework for environmental assessment and optimisation of aircraft trajectories. In that context we present ideas on future implementation of such advanced meteorological services into air traffic management and trajectory planning by relying on environmental change functions (ECFs). These ECFs represent environmental impact due to changes in air quality, noise and climate impact. In a case study for Europe prototype ECFs are implemented and a performance assessment of aircraft trajectories is performed for a one-day traffic sample. For a single flight fuel-optimal versus climate-optimized trajectory solution is evaluated using prototypic ECFs and identifying mitigation potential. The ultimate goal of such a concept is to make available a comprehensive assessment framework for environmental performance of aircraft operations, by providing key performance indicators on climate impact, air quality and noise, as well as a tool for environmental optimisation of aircraft trajectories. This framework would allow studying and characterising changes in traffic flows due to environmental optimisation, as well as studying trade-offs between distinct strategic measures. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Spray Characteristics of Alternative Aviation Fuel Blends
Aerospace 2017, 4(2), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace4020018 - 23 Mar 2017
Cited by 1
Abstract
The compatibility of spray characteristics of alternative fuel blends, in relation to currently used Jet A-1 fuel, has been assessed experimentally. Tested blends were selected based on a narrow cut of paraffins, mixed with appropriately selected aromatics and naphthenes. Relevant physical properties including [...] Read more.
The compatibility of spray characteristics of alternative fuel blends, in relation to currently used Jet A-1 fuel, has been assessed experimentally. Tested blends were selected based on a narrow cut of paraffins, mixed with appropriately selected aromatics and naphthenes. Relevant physical properties including the density, viscosity, and surface tension were estimated first. The jet spray was produced using a single fluid, generic nozzle at operating pressures 5–11 bars. The atomization characteristics were assessed through measurements of droplet velocity field and droplet size, using phase Doppler anemometry. The physical properties varied within 10% of the reference fuel values. The spray results indicate that all tested blends produced similar atomized jets and droplet sizes, although observed differences may influence the implementation of combustion schemes which require precise control of the flow pattern. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Optimization of Heat Exchangers for Intercooled Recuperated Aero Engines
Aerospace 2017, 4(1), 14; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace4010014 - 13 Mar 2017
Cited by 5
Abstract
In the framework of the European research project LEMCOTEC, a section was devoted to the further optimization of the recuperation system of the Intercooled Recuperated Aero engine (IRA engine) concept, of MTU Aero Engines AG. This concept is based on an advanced thermodynamic [...] Read more.
In the framework of the European research project LEMCOTEC, a section was devoted to the further optimization of the recuperation system of the Intercooled Recuperated Aero engine (IRA engine) concept, of MTU Aero Engines AG. This concept is based on an advanced thermodynamic cycle combining both intercooling and recuperation. The present work is focused only on the recuperation process. This is carried out through a system of heat exchangers mounted inside the hot-gas exhaust nozzle, providing fuel economy and reduced pollutant emissions. The optimization of the recuperation system was performed using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) computations, experimental measurements and thermodynamic cycle analysis for a wide range of engine operating conditions. A customized numerical tool was developed based on an advanced porosity model approach. The heat exchangers were modeled as porous media of predefined heat transfer and pressure loss behaviour and could also incorporate major and critical heat exchanger design decisions in the CFD computations. The optimization resulted in two completely new innovative heat exchanger concepts, named as CORN (COnical Recuperative Nozzle) and STARTREC (STraight AnnulaR Thermal RECuperator), which provided significant benefits in terms of fuel consumption, pollutants emission and weight reduction compared to more conventional heat exchanger designs, thus proving that further optimization potential for this technology exists. Full article
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Open AccessProject Report
Mitigating the Climate Impact from Aviation: Achievements and Results of the DLR WeCare Project
Aerospace 2017, 4(3), 34; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace4030034 - 29 Jun 2017
Cited by 18
Abstract
The WeCare project (Utilizing Weather information for Climate efficient and eco efficient future aviation), an internal project of the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt, DLR), aimed at finding solutions for reducing the climate impact of aviation based on an [...] Read more.
The WeCare project (Utilizing Weather information for Climate efficient and eco efficient future aviation), an internal project of the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt, DLR), aimed at finding solutions for reducing the climate impact of aviation based on an improved understanding of the atmospheric impact from aviation by making use of measurements and modeling approaches. WeCare made some important contributions to advance the scientific understanding in the area of atmospheric and air transportation research. We characterize contrail properties, show that the aircraft type significantly influences these properties, and how contrail-cirrus interacts with natural cirrus. Aviation NOx emissions lead to ozone formation and we show that the strength of the ozone enhancement varies, depending on where within a weather pattern NOx is emitted. These results, in combination with results on the effects of aerosol emissions on low cloud properties, give a revised view on the total radiative forcing of aviation. The assessment of a fleet of strut-braced wing aircraft with an open rotor is investigated and reveals the potential to significantly reduce the climate impact. Intermediate stop operations have the potential to significantly reduce fuel consumption. However, we find that, if only optimized for fuel use, they will have an increased climate impact, since non-CO2 effects compensate the reduced warming from CO2 savings. Avoiding climate sensitive regions has a large potential in reducing climate impact at relatively low costs. Taking advantage of a full 3D optimization has a much better eco-efficiency than lateral re-routings, only. The implementation of such operational measures requires many more considerations. Non-CO2 aviation effects are not considered in international agreements. We showed that climate-optimal routing could be achieved, if market-based measures were in place, which include these non-CO2 effects. An alternative measure to foster climate-optimal routing is the closing of air spaces, which are very climate-sensitive. Although less effective than an unconstrained optimization with respect to climate, it still has a significant potential to reduce the climate impact of aviation. By combining atmospheric and air transportation research, we assess climate mitigation measures, aiming at providing information to aviation stakeholders and policy-makers to make aviation more climate compatible. Full article
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