NASA SBIR 2010 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 10-1 A2.10-9497
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Propulsion Systems
PROPOSAL TITLE: Hybrid Axial and Cross-Flow Fan Propulsion for Transonic Blended Wing Body Aircraft

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Propulsive Wing, LLC
321 Rt. 5
Elbridge, NY 13060 - 0321
(315) 252-2559

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Joseph Kummer
321 Rt. 5
Elbridge, NY 13060 - 0321
(315) 252-2559

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 0
End: 2

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The challenges of the next century of aviation will require innovative and revolutionary concepts to meet air transportation demands. One NASA vision for future transport-sized aircraft includes the blended-wing-body (BWB) platform with embedded, distributed propulsion as a means for increased efficiency and reduced noise. In cruise, embedded propulsion benefits from boundary layer ingestion and wake filling, resulting in high propulsive efficiency. However, several challenges exist, including inlet nozzle design, propulsor design for ingestion of highly non-uniform inflow, and propulsor/airframe support structure optimization. This work proposes a hybrid turboelectric propulsion system incorporating small embedded, distributed cross-flow fans (CFF) for boundary layer control and wake filling, and much larger axial fans for primary thrust. Bringing together the best qualities of both axial and CFF propulsion, a substantial improvement in overall vehicle efficiency is possible. CFD and analytical analyses will be used to investigate the flow field and range of application for such a system. Comparisons will be made with published baseline designs with respect to power requirements, component weights, support structure, and other key parameters.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Upon completion of Phase II, our goal is to have a system capable of inclusion not only within the framework of future BWB transport aircraft, but in others as well. For example, high altitude atmospheric research at altitudes above 80,000 ft would be possible with a cross-flow fan propelled aircraft due to the high lift capability. The large internal volume would provide ample room for sensor packages when compared with standard airplane configurations. With further R&D effort beyond Phase II, this internal cargo volume may be useful for carrying small rocket-based vehicles to 100,000 ft altitude for launch into orbit. A smaller version of this aircraft could potentially be used as a Mars plane, where the primary design criteria are a compact, robust airframe with extremely high lift.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Hand-launchable UAVs represent a key market for the Propulsive Wing, since the high lift and large internal volume of this platform is ideal for carrying sensor packages or munitions for military use. Due to the robust structure and embedded propulsion, the vehicle can also be configured for launch from larger aircraft at cruise altitude and speed. For larger UAVs, high lift and very large internal cargo volume will provide an ideal platform for high latitude and long endurance. Long wingspan versions will be able to fly at altitudes greater than 80,000 feet for a week or more. The substantial cargo volume also offers the possibility of using fuel cell technology. This will provide electric power for distributed CFF or Axial/CFF propulsion, while the embedded propulsion and cold exhaust will help reduce radar cross-section. Another potential application is UAV cargo transport. As an example, a 50 foot wingspan CFF-propelled aircraft with 900 HP of installed power would be capable of flight at 50,000 ft or higher at 250 knots for over 1,000 nm, yet have a takeoff ground roll of 200 feet and be capable of landing in under 100 feet. With the addition of Axial/CFF propulsion, such a vehicle (with appropriately higher power) would be able to travel over twice as fast. Lastly, the platform lends itself to underwater applications, whereby the vehicle produces a downward lift force to counteract buoyancy, and the vectored thrust controls offer a high degree of maneuverability.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (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.)
Atmospheric Propulsion
Models & Simulations (see also Testing & Evaluation)

Form Generated on 09-03-10 12:12