PhD thesis could make a more fuel efficient aircraft possible

Lowering of fuel consumption and emissions is of paramount importance in the aerospace industry but the aircraft engine is a complex system. The different parts are dependent on each other and it’s difficult to determine which component to take care of first and foremost to make the aircraft engine more efficient. Oskar Thulin deals with this in his PhD thesis ”On the analysis of energy efficient aircraft engines”

The aircraft engine consists of many integral components and each component will influence the overall performance of the system. Furthermore, the aircraft engine has weight and contributes to drag that must be compensated for by the engine. Using the regular way to assess performance, it is impossible to compare one component's loss to another or to directly relate an individual component's loss to the overall loss. Oskar Thulin has developed an analytical method that makes it possible to directly compare component losses in a system perspective. The method also makes it possible to include weight or caused drag in the analysis.

"This gives a much more clear picture of how big the losses are for the various components, as well as for each component type" says Oskar Thulin.

The developed framework is used to study various aircraft engines. In general, it can be said that the hot exhaust gases that leave the engine, the combustion process in itself, and the part of the kinetic energy in the exhaust that is not used to propel the aircraft forward, are the main sources of the overall loss.

"Based on the analysis you can discuss different technologies that can do something about these dominant losses. This enables a future more fuel-efficient airplane, says Oskar Thulin, who will present his PhD thesis at Chalmers University of Technology on December 6 at 10:00 in HB4.

Published: Fri 01 Dec 2017. Modified: Tue 05 Dec 2017