URBAN AIR MOBILITY
SIMULATION FOR ELECTRICAL VTOL VEHICLES
3DEXPERIENCE for Design of Safe, Quiet, and Efficient Electric VTOL Aircrafts
With our global population growing as quickly as urban centers, traffic congestion will be an even bigger issue in the coming years. The solution for covering ground… is up in the air. Urban Air Mobility is the future of transportation, and with low emissions, the electric vertical take-off and landing vehicle, or eVTOL, is most efficient and environmentally sound choice.
While many companies have started work on the eVTOL vehicle, no one has taken the lead in this market, yet. Because of this, the first company to come to market successfully will have a significant advantage in publicity, investment, and name recognition.
However, this groundbreaking vehicle comes with some enormous challenges, including noise concerns, battery limitations, safety, and air traffic management. With 40 years experience developing technology for aerospace, Dassault Systemes is perfectly suited to help eVTOL manufacturers solve all of these issues as they work to Reinvent the Sky.
Distributed electric propulsion will be the key enabling technology for Urban Air Mobility success. First, it removes the single point failure of the main rotor of a helicopter and increases the safety of the vehicle by design. Second, by placing strategically the propulsion system around the vehicle, complex aerodynamics flow features can be harnessed to increase the lift and reduce the drag. Finally, by having lower rotor tip speed and less loaded blades, the noise can be drastically reduced. SIMULIA PowerFLOW, enables the analysis of all aircraft case scenarios early in the design process to converge to a wining concept.
Rotorcraft Aerodynamics and Aeroacoustics Predictions using Lattice-Boltzmann Method
How does Aerodynamics affect Rotorcrafts? The science behind Rotorcraft aerodynamics and noise? How do you improve aerodynamics while minimizing the noise? Read these papers by Delft University who have used PowerFLOW a Lattice-Boltzmann based solver for accuracy and computational speed.
An electric VTOL will generate noise. To be accepted by a community and be certified, its noise footprint will have to blend in the city background noise. This type of vehicle will be by design quieter than a helicopter since distributed electric propulsion has many advantages about noise. However, the city background noise is not that high compared to a conventional helicopter so these new vehicles will have to be very quiet. Therefore, broadband noise, interactional noise will have to be taken in consideration early in the design phase to be sure, the vehicle will be designed around one goal: blend into the city background noise. Additionally, during transitions[watch video], the vehicle will be prone the Blade Vortex Interactions (BVI) and in cities there is turbulence[watch video] ,and recirculations around buildings which will increase its noise footprint. With SIMULIA PowerFLOW, all these case scenarios can be simulated as early as the preliminary design phase.
Acoustic Analysis for Urban Air Operations
In order to develop and certify eVTOL vehicles to operate in urban areas, low noise take-off and landing procedures as well as optimal vertiport positions and flight corridors need to be identified in very early stages.
This paper describes computational workflows for the evaluation of the acoustic environmental impact of an eVTOL flying over flat terrain. The prediction of the aeroacoustic sources is followed by computation of the noise generated around the vehicle and finally its projection on the ground, in order to estimate the perceived noise levels approaching the urban areas.
Further proof-of-concept study showcases the feasibility of the numerical assessment method for vehicles operated in populated urban areas, where the effects of sound scattering due to the presence of buildings is analyzed.
Flow Confinement Effects on UAV Rotor Noise
While rotor designs are ultimately physically validated in anechoic facility, the closed chamber does not represent the exact real conditions in which the rotor will operate. Therefore, it is important to understand how virtual and physical tests in confined environment differ from free-filed conditions and how to account for the observed effects in simulation models. Learn more from this study that investigates the impact of flow recirculation in a hemi-anechoic facility on the noise-generation mechanisms of a drone rotor operating under static thrust conditions.
Turbofan Broadband Noise Prediction
The development of modern turbofan architectures relies crucially on accurate noise prediction methods in order to perform the necessary fan versus jet noise trade-offs. The goal of the present paper is to measure the fidelity of a hybrid lattice-Boltzmann (LB)/very large-eddy simulation (VLES) flow model in predicting the absolute and relative broadband noise levels generated by a set of realistic fan/outlet guide vane configurations and to demonstrate that accurate predictions can be already achieved in turnaround times that are compatible with industrial time constraints.
Safety will be key to Urban Air Mobility. Electrical VTOL vehicles use several new technologies such as distributed electric propulsion, fly-by-wire, batteries and carbon fiber. These new technologies need to be understood at a single component level but also as a whole system. Risks such as bird strike [read blog], lighting strike [read blog], emergency landing, fly in city turbulence, battery thermal runaway [read blog], power shutdown, icing condition, can be mitigated thanks to simulation with the 3DEXPERIENCE platform that can be performed as early as on the preliminary design.
Electric power is key to reducing aircraft noise and satisfying public demand for clean energy. Batteries are the most well-known source to power eVTOL vehicles, but the technology is a primary challenge, in terms of achieving sufficiently high specific power to support take-off and landing; high energy density to ensure target range and minimal weight to reduce energy consumption. To fully optimize battery and address concerns regarding thermal management, safety, reliability, and aging, the battery behavior across all scales and physics should be considered. Dassault Systèmes provides solutions for low and high fidelity system and physics simulations giving insight about diffusion, electric, chemical, mechanical and thermal behavior from molecular level through individual cell, modules, up to the integration of the battery system in the vehicle.
In order to stay ahead of this emerging industry, eVTOL manufacturers need new tools and methods to streamline and accelerate the design process. Critical aspect is the efficiency and connectivity of such engineering tools that enable teams to collaborate, quickly explore design alternatives, and validate their feasibility from the early stages of the development. The 3DEXPERIENCE platform supports preliminary design engineers with high-end parametric CAD capabilities, cross-discipline modeling, and leading optimization technologies, all tightly integrated in single easy to use environment.
Conceptual Sizing Optimization for Urban Air Mobility
This presentation introduces a novel conceptual sizing optimization workflow for an eVTOL design utilizing the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. The process includes creation of parametric design, multi-physics simulation performed within the same interface, and combining parametric and non-parametric optimization to determine the lightest but structurally feasible design.
Conceptual Design and Evaluation of Airframe Structure
This presentation showcases the power of CATIA SFE to create parametric concept models in a short time frame, before CAD design is kicked-off. These models are further leveraged to support, multidisciplinary optimization, which includes internal loads & crashworthiness scenarios.
Composites Engineering - Integrated Modeling and Simulation at JOBY Aviation
JOBY Aviation who successfully implemented the collaborative capabilities for composites design and simulation on 3DEXPERIENCE platform through the development of their revolutionary aircraft (one of the most advanced eVTOL projects for Urban Air Mobility), presented use cases and feedbacks related to their workflow.
Composites Engineering - Integrated Modeling and Simulation at JOBY Aviation
The greatest operational barrier to deploying an eVTOL fleet in cities is a lack of sufficient locations to place landing spots. Vertiports should be easily accessible within city centers or downtown cores, which introduces significant challenges for city administrative authorities to allocate new spaces or adapt existing heliports in relatively shorter period. 3DEXPERIENCity® powered by the 3DEXPERIENCE platform offers game changing innovation for managing territorial complexity. By incorporating territorial data with analytical, modeling, simulation, and lifecycle management capabilities, it enables collaboration between all stakeholders involved in skyport infrastructure planning – including urban planning departments, regulatory agencies, transportation and utility network providers, architects, engineers, and contractors.