NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-2 A2.10-8873
PROPOSAL TITLE: Computational Wind Tunnel: A Design Tool for Rotorcraft

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Sukra Helitek, Inc.
3146 Greenwood Road
Ames, IA 50014 - 4504
(515) 292-9646

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Angela Lestari
3146, Greenwood Road
Ames, IA 50014 - 4504
(515) 292-9646

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 7 to 8

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
During initial design studies, parametric variation of vehicle geometry
is routine. In addition, rotorcraft engineers traditionally use the wind tunnel to evaluate and finalize designs. Estimation of rotor tunnel
blockage is significantly more complex than bluff body corrections as the correction depends on operational characteristics such as rotor RPM and thrust produced.

This proposal offers to develop an Integrated Design Environment (IDE) which can simulate a complete rotorcraft with or without wind tunnel walls including all the facility effects.

At the heart of the innovation are:

1. An automated hybrid grid generator (viscous grids near the bodies and
unstructured Cartesian grid everywhere else).
2. A robust and economical incompressible flow solver for the entire system of grids.
3. Momentum source based rotor model that is suitable and economical
for simulating configurations with multiple rotors.

In Phase I, the proof-of-concept developed used unstructured Cartesian
grid for the model and wind tunnel. In phase II, the tool will be extended
to hybrid grid with viscous grid near solid surfaces and will include several tools including a simple CAD like geometry manipulation tool and pre- and post-processing tools all integrated in one environment to facilitate ease of use.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA's interest in civil rotorcraft research prompts for a computational
tool which has an Integrated Design Environment that is easy to learn
and be robust and computationally efficient. The proposed design tool accomplishes this goal, especially in areas where geometric design changes are being considered and wind tunnel testing is integral to the design study. The tool can be effectively used for rotorcraft and V/STOL aircrafts where quantification of parametric variation in the design
is essential for success.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The integrated Design Environment with a simple module for geometry
manipulation and tools for pre-processing and post-processing CFD
simulation will be an asset to any organization with a need to analyze
a rotorcraft design or develop a new design. Incidentally the tool acting as a computational wind tunnel will be an asset to other government agencies including ARMY, NAVY and AIR FORCE where wind tunnel
testing of rotorcraft and V/STOL aircrafts is routine. In the rotorcraft industry, the proposed tool can be used to assist during the design process. The tool will be designed to be versatile and enable the user to easily vary design parameters.
In the educational institutions the tool will help the students to
gain insight on different flow phenomena, the effect of geometric variation and wind tunnel walls on the performance and flow field of a rotorcraft.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

Portable Data Acquisition or Analysis Tools

Form Generated on 10-23-08 13:36