Aerodynamic and Acoustic Interaction Effects of Adjacent Propellers in Forward Flight

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Distributed electric propulsion systems are an emerging technology with the potential of revolutionizing the design and performance of aircraft. When propellers are located in close proximity, they can be subjected to aerodynamic interactions, which affect the far-field noise. In this paper, we study an array of three co-rotating and adjacent propellers to describe both the aerodynamic and acoustic installation effects. A scale-resolving CFD simulation based on the Lattice-Boltzmann/Very-Large-Eddy-Simulation method is used to solve the flow field around the propellers. An acoustic analogy integral approach calculates the far-field noise. Findings show that the helical vortical structures, generated at the tip of each blade undergo a flow deformation at the location of interaction. This causes the loading of each blade to vary during the rotation. Consequently, the unsteady loading noise becomes a dominant noise generation mechanism, driving the noise levels and directivity. It is also shown that introducing a non-zero relative phase angle between the propellers results in a reduction of the unsteady thrust, leading to a mitigation of the unsteady-loading tonal components along the rotation axis. Additionally, the relative phase angle causes constructive/destructive acoustic interference, as demonstrated by analyzing the noise emitted simultaneously by the three propellers.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAIAA AVIATION 2023 Forum
PublisherAmerican Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Inc. (AIAA)
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-62410-704-7
Publication statusPublished - 2023
EventAIAA AVIATION 2023 Forum - San Diego, United States
Duration: 12 Jun 202316 Jun 2023


ConferenceAIAA AVIATION 2023 Forum
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Diego

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