NASA SBIR 2003 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER:03-A4.06-8071 (For NASA Use Only - Chron: 034936)
SUBTOPIC TITLE:Launch Vehicle Subsystems Technology
PROPOSAL TITLE:Rule-Based Multidisciplinary Tool for Unsteady Reacting Real-Fluid Flows

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Streamline Numerics, Inc.
3221 NW 13th Street, Suite A
Gainesville ,FL 32609 - 2189
(352) 271 - 8841

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Siddharth   Thakur
3221 NW 13th Street, Suite A
Gainesville ,FL  32609 -2189
(352) 271 - 8841
U.S. Citizen or Legal Resident: Yes

A design and analysis computational tool is proposed for simulating unsteady reacting flows in combustor devices used in reusable launch vehicles. Key aspects guiding the development are: (a) accuracy, (b) efficiency, and (c) integration of multidisciplinary techniques. To accurately reflect the physics, the tool must include unsteady, all-speed flow modeling with real-fluid effects and be multidisciplinary, including solid-phase thermal and stress analysis. Efficiency necessitates large-scale parallel computing. Finally, the computational framework must allow an efficient integration of multidisciplinary physics. The key features of the proposed tool are: (1) a rule-based framework called LOCI which automatically handles parallel computing and multidisciplinary algorithm integration; (2) all-speed pressure-based CFD methodology (embedded in a code called STREAM); (3) unsteady flow solver with finite-rate chemistry on unstructured grids; (4) real-fluid modeling (RFM); (5) tightly-coupled multidisciplinary physics, including solid-phase thermal and stress analysis. Phase I work will consist of: (a) implementing unsteady finite-rate combustion capability into LOCI-STREAM and (b) laying the foundation for implementing real-fluid models into LOCI. Phase II will accomplish: (a) integration of real-fluid models into LOCI-STREAM; (b) integration of solid-phase heat transfer and finite element stress analysis with the fluid flow solver. The resulting CFD tool will be called LOCI-STREAM-RFM.

The outcome of Phase I and Phase II research activities will be a powerful CFD-based design and analysis tool (called LOCI-STREAM-RFM) for combustor devices in rocket engines used in reusable launch vehicles. The enhanced physical models (such as real-fluid and advanced turbulence models), the tightly coupled multidisciplinary physics, and the efficient unsteady simulation capability will result in a better understanding of the complex physics involved in such devices. It is anticipated that all these capabilities in a unified framework will lead to better and more cost-effective design and analysis process for NASA.

The computational tool resulting from this SBIR project will have wide-ranging commercial applications. The reacting flow capability can be used for simulating combusting flows in various industrial applications, such as gas turbine engines, diesel engines, etc. The real-fluid methodology can be used in a large number of industrial flow situations involving both chemically inert and reacting flows. With future additions of other combustion and multi-phase models, the applicability of LOCI-STREAM-RF can be further broadened.