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Supersonic Aircraft Shape Design Powered by SU2 and Pointwise

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[29 Apr 2014] Supersonic aircraft are poised for a comeback. Current regulations do not permit supersonic flight over land due to sonic boom noise. However, recent advances in simulation-based design are opening the door to new supersonic aircraft designs with reduced sonic boom impacts. The design of these aircraft requires accurate predictions of sonic boom on the ground and techniques for shaping the aircraft to achieve a desired boom signature while maintaining performance.

This webinar details how Pointwise and SU2 can be used to tackle supersonic aircraft design. Watertight surface and volume meshes for complex geometries can be quickly generated in Pointwise and exported to the native SU2 format. A properly constructed mesh aids in accurately predicting boom on the ground. Furthermore, a new script for Pointwise can help designers generate Free Form Deformation (FFD) boxes for geometry parameterization and shape design in SU2.

We will also demonstrate how to formulate and solve a shape design problem in SU2, using a continuous adjoint formulation to obtain the sensitivities for gradient-based optimization. This includes a discussion of proper settings for the flow and adjoint problems, objectives and constraints, FFD design variables, and mesh deformation. Finally, we will present optimal shape design results from SU2 for the Lockheed Martin 1021 aircraft.

Discover How To

  • Quickly generate a watertight unstructured surface and volume mesh suitable for Euler calculations.
  • Improve farfield shock capturing without the need for grid adaptation by assembling Mach aligned structured blocks.
  • Save time by creating FFD boxes for design optimization within Pointwise.
  • Easily configure SU2 for solving the Euler and adjoint Euler equations and computing surface sensitivities for design.
  • Set up a shape design problem in SU2, including formulating objectives and constraints, FFD design variables, and mesh deformation.
  • Perform optimal shape design of a supersonic aircraft for minimizing drag with constraints.

Lockheed Martin 1021

The Lockheed Martin 1021 is one of the test cases from the AIAA 1st Sonic Boom Prediction Workshop. At that website you will find the technical paper Full Configuration Low Boom Model and Grids for 2014 Sonic Boom Prediction Workshop by J. M. Morgenstern, M. Buonanno, and F. Marconi (AIAA Paper 2013-0647).



surface mesh for LM 1021

A watertight unstructured surface mesh suitable for Euler calculations was generated for the Lockheed Martin 1021 low boom supersonic transport aircraft.

symmetry plane flowfield for LM 1021

CFD solution computed using SU2 captures high resolution shock structures present on the surface of the aircraft and propagating well into the farfield.

Files for Download

Description Format File Name File Size [MB]
Webinar Video File WMV Supersonic-Aircraft-Shape-Design-Powered-by-SU2-and-Pointwise.wmv 83
Uninitialized grid for the Lockheed Martin 1021 PW LM-1021-EulerMesh.pw 19.8
Presentation slides from the webinar PDF Pointwise-Stanford-Webinar-Slides.pdf 2.9
Script to generate free form deformation boxes for SU2 GLF CreateFFD.glf 0.2
SU2 mesh, config, and restart files for the LM 1021 optimization case   su2.stanford.edu/trainning.html