It’s important to generate functional components of your aerospace project by analyzing them at each stage of your design, whether it’s your conceptual design framework or your final computational analysis before flight testing begins. To do this, you need a full suite of tools at your disposal, including computational fluid dynamics tools, high-performance computing power, as well as pre- and post-processing tools.
If you want to design planes that will fly quickly and efficiently, you need to see what happens when air flows over their wings. To test the aerodynamics of your design in a low-risk environment, there’s no better method than a wind tunnel test.
When designing and analyzing new aircraft models, you can’t compromise on your computer-aided engineering (CAE) tools. Computational fluid dynamics modeling software (CFD) is but one of many tools you should have at your disposal. But the type of CFD modeling software you choose should depend on your particular project and your desired outcome.
Engineers who are designing, configuring, and analyzing new aircraft, as well as those who are updating existing aircraft models, have plenty of software at their disposal to drive results. Providers of such software may even offer assistance in using their product, such as demonstrations, literature, or ongoing software support.
Defense requirements have changed, with information and data taking precedence.
In the past decade alone, the United States and its allies have shifted priorities to combat new and emerging threats and maintain dominance in the air. Data, surveillance, and intelligence have become paramount to maintaining a strong national defense.
Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), or Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), have a long history in the defense space. Even before the age of aviation, unmanned surveillance and attack balloons were used in the fields of Europe. Modern UAS engineering has produced the defense and intelligence fixed-wing aircraft that most people recognize, as well as rotorcraft, satellite technology, and the many commercial spin-offs that are now popular all over the world.
Commercial aircraft configuration is an exercise in compromise between competing needs. Perhaps the most important engineering decisions occur when assessing what role each aircraft will play. But from the routes the aircraft will take to the cargo it will hold to the material each aircraft is built with, engineers are constantly searching for ways to make aircraft more efficient and aerodynamic.
From conception to implementation, commercial aircraft engineering is an enduring process that requires multiple levels of analysis and assessment. Every design has certain constraints and requirements. These constraints are built upon a number of factors.
If you’re making modifications to existing aircraft or designing new aircraft, you need a powerful suite of computational fluid dynamics software to support the development of your aerodynamic designs. However, you may not be able to analyze unique modifications properly with your software as it stands. New codes may be necessary.
If you need to test the fluid dynamics of your new aircraft designs, there are a few core pieces of CFD software that should be part of your repertoire. Naturally, the software you choose will depend on your specific problem. If you’re trying to collect data on a new rotorcraft design, you’ll need different methods than if you’re only testing a new winglet for airfoil.