CFD as Applied to the Design Of Short Takeoff and Landing Vehicles Using Circulation Control
The ability to predict the distance required for an aircraft to takeoff is an essential component of aircraft design. It involves aspects related to each of the major aircraft systems: aerodynamics, propulsion, configuration, structures, and stability and control. For an aircraft designed for short takeoffs and landings (STOL), designing the aircraft to provide a short takeoff distance, or more precisely the balanced field length (BFL), often leads to the use of a powered lift technique such as circulation control (CC). Although CC has been around for many years, it has never been used on a production aircraft. This is in part due to the lack of knowledge as to how well CC can actually perform as a high lift device. This research provides a solution to this problem. By utilizing high fidelity computational fluid dynamics (CFD) aerodynamic data, a four-dimensional design space which was populated and modeled using a Monte Carlo approach, and a Gaussian Processes regression technique, an effective aerodynamic model for CC was produced which was then used in a BFL simulation. Three separate models were created of increasing quality which were then used in the BFL performance calculations. A comprehensive gridding methodology was provided as well as computational and grid dependence error analysis. Specific consideration was given to the effect of resolving the turbulent boundary layer in both the gridding and solving processes. Finally, additional turbulence model validation work was performed, both to match previously performed experimental data and to provide a comparison of different models' abilities to predict separation.