A preliminary parametric study for an advanced propulsion technology helicopter

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Fakhre, A.
Syed, M.
Goulos, I.
Pachidis, V.
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This paper aims to present a preliminary trade-off study through the deployment of an integrated helicopter multidisciplinary simulation framework. Analytical evaluations of existing and conceptual intercooled recuperated engine designs are carried out in terms of operational performance and environmental impact. The proposed methodology comprises a wide-range of individual modeling theories applicable to helicopter flight dynamics, gas turbine engine performance as well as a novel, physics-based, stirred reactor model for the rapid estimation of various helicopter emissions species. The overall methodology has been deployed to conduct a preliminary trade-off study for a conventional simple cycle and conceptual intercooled recuperated twin-engine-medium helicopter, modelled after the Aérospatiale SA330 helicopter configuration. Extensive comparisons are carried out and presented for the aforementioned helicopters at both engine and mission level, along with general flight performance charts including the payload-range diagram. The acquired results from the design trade-off study suggest that the conceptual intercooled recuperated helicopter can offer significant improvement in the payload-range capability, while simultaneously maintaining the required airworthiness requirements. Furthermore, it has been quantified through the implementation of a representative case study that, while the intercooled recuperated configuration can enhance the mission range and payload capabilities of the helicopter, it may have a detrimental effect on the mission emissions inventory, specifically for NOx (Nitrogen Oxides). This may impose a trade-off between the fuel economy and environmental performance of the helicopter. The proposed methodology can effectively be regarded as an enabling technology for the comprehensive assessment of conventional and conceptual helicopter–powerplant systems, in terms of operational performance and environmental impact as well as towards the quantification of their associated trade-offs at mission level.