Faculté des Sciences appliquées
Faculté des Sciences appliquées

Final work : Aerodynamic design and optimization of a propeller for a regional electric aircraft

Baruah, Prachurjya Jyoti ULiège
Promotor(s) : Dimitriadis, Grigorios ULiège
Date of defense : 5-Sep-2022/6-Sep-2022 • Permalink :
Title : Final work : Aerodynamic design and optimization of a propeller for a regional electric aircraft
Author : Baruah, Prachurjya Jyoti ULiège
Date of defense  : 5-Sep-2022/6-Sep-2022
Advisor(s) : Dimitriadis, Grigorios ULiège
Committee's member(s) : Hillewaert, Koen ULiège
Lejon, Marcus 
Billson, Mattias 
Language : English
Number of pages : 72
Keywords : [fr] Propeller, Optimization, Design of Eexperiment (DoE), Meta-model, Pareto front,
Discipline(s) : Engineering, computing & technology > Aerospace & aeronautics engineering
Research unit : GKN Aerospace Sweden AB
Name of the research project : Aerodynamic design and optimization of a propeller for a regional electric aircraft
Target public : Researchers
Professionals of domain
Institution(s) : Université de Liège, Liège, Belgique
Degree: Master en ingénieur civil en aérospatiale, à finalité spécialisée en "turbomachinery aeromechanics (THRUST)"
Faculty: Master thesis of the Faculté des Sciences appliquées


[fr] The prime focus of this thesis work is to engineer an optimization framework capable
of aerodynamic design optimization of propellers. The starting point of the study is a
baseline design which is created by using a code based on Blade-Element Momentum
and Vortex methods. Optimization is performed using a nature inspired Evolutionary
algorithm (EA). The current work is a multi-objective problem which involves maximizing
thrust and propeller efficiency. To regard individual designs in terms of objective
functions, the criterion employed is Pareto Optimality. A reduction of design variable
space is done and the blade angle at three different spanwise locations are studied for
optimization. The distributions of other design parameters are set identical to the one
employed by the NASA SR7L propeller. The predicted designs are evaluated using steady
state RANS computations. It took 10 design optimization iterations for the Pareto front
to converge. It is shown that the predictive capability of the meta-model consistently
improved over the last few design loops as more design are evaluated using 3D CFD and
used as input to the meta-model. Using the final Pareto front, the design closest to the
target thrust, denoted Design A, is selected for further analysis which is compared to three
other designs namely, the baseline design, the maximum efficiency and the maximum
thrust design. It is observed that the maximum thrust design has higher losses in terms
of stronger tip vortices and more pronounced corner separations near the hub. The
Pareto front illustrates that between the objective functions, there is a trade to be made.
Higher efficiency comes at the cost of lower thrust, and vice versa. As such, although
the maximum efficiency design has lower losses (and hence higher efficiency), it results
in a lower thrust generation. The chosen design is well poised between both extremes
generating the required thrust and at the same time being efficient. The efficiency gain
compared to the baseline design is 0.1%. This can be improved by obviating various
simplifications considered in this work and also by introducing design considerations like



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  • Baruah, Prachurjya Jyoti ULiège Université de Liège > Master ingé. civ. aérospat., à fin. (THRUST)


Committee's member(s)

  • Hillewaert, Koen ULiège Université de Liège - ULiège > Département d'aérospatiale et mécanique > Design of Turbomachines
    ORBi View his publications on ORBi
  • Lejon, Marcus GK aerospace
  • Billson, Mattias
  • Total number of views 20
  • Total number of downloads 0

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