von Ohain Fuels and Combustion Center Increases the Number of Engineers and Scientists within its Fuels, Modeling and Simulation, and Combustion Groups
Recent price increases and supply disruptions have demonstrated the need for a secure U.S. source of alternative liquid transportation fuels for both military and commercial sectors. In this context, alternative fuel means synthetic non-petroleum, domestically-produced transportation fuels. The von Ohain Fuels and Combustion Center is at the forefront of the “Alternative Jet Fuels” research, and we are closely working with the Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (WPAFB) in Dayton, Ohio, constructing an Assured Aerospace Fuels Research Facility (AAFRF) at WPAFB, and establishing specifications and properties of Fischer-Tropsch (F-T) synthetic fuels for use in turbine engines.
Modeling and Simulation
Energy management of advanced high-performance aircraft requires viewing the aircraft as an integrated system and simultaneously modeling mechanical, thermal, and electrical aspects of engine and the airframe. von Ohain Fuels and Combustion Center engineers are working on system-level modeling and simulation of the energy management and linking different modeling approaches such as developing high fidelity computational models of micro-heat exchangers with subsequent integration into system-level models. We are also using Large Eddy Simulation (LES) codes for modeling gas turbine combustor flows. We are using the LES-Fluent code as our modeling software of choice and working to educate young modeling engineers.
Combustion Emissions Research
We are studying the effects of synthetic fuel composition on soot mitigation using a well-stirred chemical reactor (WSR) and a shock tube. Various synthetic fuel + conventional JP-8 jet fuel blends are burned in the WSR and a shock tube. We are investigating gaseous and particulate emissions and ignition delays. Our gaseous emissions research seeks to decrease NOx emissions to below the ICAO-CAEP 4 standard for engine emissions and the particulate emissions research seeks to meet the goals set by the more stringent National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter less than 2.5 microns (PM2.5).