Turboelectric fuselage wake-filling propulsion integration
In June 2017, the European Union-funded Horizon 2020 research project CENTRELINE was successfully launched. Coordinated by Bauhaus Luftfahrt, the project consortium comprises nine partners, including industry companies, universities, and a management consulting partner. The consortium is accompanied by a technical advisory board of experts from industrial stakeholders and research organisations. CENTRELINE aims at maximising the benefits of aft-fuselage wake filling under realistic systems design and operating conditions. The Propulsive Fuselage Concept to be investigated implements wake filling through a turboelectrically driven propulsor installed at the fuselage aft-end, intended to ingest the fuselage boundary layer. As a primary project goal, CENTRELINE will perform the proof of concept and initial experimental validation of this novel approach towards synergistic propulsion/airframe integration, thereby maturing this technology significantly. Key aspects of the aerodynamic work will include comprehensive numerical flow simulations of the configuration accompanied by a wind tunnel test campaign. Moreover, the performance of the fuselage propulsor will be numerically and experimentally investigated. All detailed design, simulation, and experimental results are continuously fed into an aircraft integrated sizing and optimisation process. Finally, a comprehensive concept benchmark and assessment against similarly advanced conventional technology will be performed. The project has a duration of 36 months.
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 723242.
- Artist view of the Propulsive Fuselage Concept: This concept investigated in CENTRELINE features an aft-fuselage installed propulsor intended to ingest and reenergise the viscosity-induced low momentum fuselage wake flow.
- Basic aircraft layout and turboelectric powertrain arrangement: The fuselage propulsor is powered by an electric motor, where the power is supplied by generators attached to two underwing podded advanced Geared TurboFan (GTF) power plants.