Study of Branched Turboprop Inlet Ducts Using a Multiple Block Grid Calculation Procedure

[+] Author and Article Information
A. K. Tolpadi, M. E. Braaten

Fluid Mechanics Program, General Electric Research & Development Center, Schenectady, NY 12301

J. Fluids Eng 114(3), 379-385 (Sep 01, 1992) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2910041 History: Received April 29, 1991; Online May 23, 2008


An important requirement in the design of an inlet duct of a turboprop engine is the ability to provide foreign object damage protection. A possible method for providing this protection is to include a bypass branch duct as an integral part of the main inlet duct. This arrangement would divert ingested debris away from the engine through the bypass. However, such an arrangement could raise the possibility of separated flow in the inlet, which in turn can increase pressure losses if not properly accounted for during the design. A fully elliptic three-dimensional body-fitted computational fluid dynamics (CFD) code based on pressure correction techniques has been developed that has the capability of performing multiple block grid calculations compatible with present day turboshaft and turboprop branched inlet ducts. Calculations are iteratively performed between sets of overlapping grids with one grid representing the main duct and a second grid representing the branch duct. Both the grid generator and the flow solver have been suitably developed to achieve this capability. The code can handle multiple branches in the flow. Using the converged flow field from this code, another program was written to perform a particle trajectory analysis. Numerical solutions were obtained on a supercomputer for a typical branched duct for which experimental flow and pressure measurements were also made. The flow separation zones predicted by the calculations were found to be in good agreement with those observed in the experimental tests. The total pressure recovery factors measured in the experiments were also compared with those obtained numerically. Within the limits of the grid resolution and the turbulence model, the agreement was found to be fairly good. In order to simulate the path of debris entering the duct, the trajectories of spherical particles of different sizes introduced at the inlet were determined.

Copyright © 1992 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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