Title page for ETD etd-02112000-09420011


Type of Document Dissertation
Author Tetrault, Philippe-Andre
Author's Email Address philippe-andre.tetrault@pwc.ca
URN etd-02112000-09420011
Title Numerical Prediction of the Interference Drag of a Streamlined Strut Intersecting a Surface in Transonic Flow
Degree PhD
Department Aerospace and Ocean Engineering
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Schetz, Joseph A. Committee Chair
Grossman, Bernard M. Committee Member
Kapania, Rakesh K. Committee Member
Mason, William H. Committee Member
Raj, Pradeep Committee Member
Keywords
  • interference drag
  • transonic flow
  • strut-braced wing
  • junction flow
Date of Defense 2000-01-31
Availability unrestricted
Abstract
In transonic flow, the aerodynamic interference that occurs on a strut-braced wing airplane, pylons, and other applications is significant. The purpose of this work is to provide relationships to estimate the interference drag of wing-strut, wing-pylon, and wing-body arrangements. Those equations are obtained by fitting a curve to the results obtained from numerous Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) calculations using state-of-the-art codes that employ the Spalart-Allmaras turbulence model.

In order to estimate the effect of the strut thickness, the Reynolds number of the flow, and the angle made by the strut with an adjacent surface, inviscid and viscous calculations are performed on a symmetrical strut at an angle between parallel walls. The computations are conducted at a Mach number of 0.85 and Reynolds numbers of 5.3 and 10.6 million based on the strut chord. The interference drag is calculated as the drag increment of the arrangement compared to an equivalent two-dimensional strut of the same cross-section. The results show a rapid increase of the interference drag as the angle of the strut deviates from a position perpendicular to the wall. Separation regions appear for low intersection angles, but the viscosity generally provides a positive effect in alleviating the strength of the shock near the junction and thus the drag penalty. When the thickness-to-chord ratio of the strut is reduced, the flowfield is disturbed only locally at the intersection of the strut with the wall. This study provides an equation to estimate the interference drag of simple intersections in transonic flow.

In the course of performing the calculations associated with this work, an unstructured flow solver was utilized. Accurate drag prediction requires a very fine grid and this leads to problems associated with the grid generator. Several challenges facing the unstructured grid methodology are discussed: slivers, grid refinement near the leading edge and at the trailing edge, grid convergence studies, volume grid generation, and other practical matters concerning such calculations.

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