THE LONG TERM CHALLENGE TO CIVIL AVIATION PROPULSION

Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering

Fall 2012 Seminar Series

Thursday, September 13 4-5 pm in MEC – 341

University of Virginia

 

Professor Riti Singh

Department of Power and Propulsion

Cranfield University, UK

The confluence of the growth of civil aviation and the need to limit its impact on climate change is set to bring the aerospace industry to its tryst with destiny. Anticipated large improvements in propulsion systems, airframes and operations are likely to be offset by market growth, not least by increasing demands from the BRIC economies. This presentation will focus on propulsion system developments within civil aviation. A drive to improve thermal and propulsive efficiencies still promises significant improvements. Bio‐mix ‘drop‐in’ fuels are likely in the next 20 years and offer further improvements. In the longer term, we are likely to see a shift to distributed propulsion to further improve both propulsive efficiency and air frame performance. This may result in a few very high‐efficiency generators, to drive a large number of small electric fans. Such a scenario opens up the possibility of significant advances with the ability to have ‘clean air frames’. In the long term, the growth of civil aviation may have to be curtailed, in spite of growing market demand. A way forward could be the combination of hydrogen and other technologies, including the intriguing possibility of an aircraft being able to produce global warming or cooling at will, perhaps allowing mankind to control the earth’s temperature by the use of civil aviation.

 Professor Riti Singh

Riti Singh is Professor Emeritus of Cranfield University. He leads the Gas Turbine Engineering & Technology Group within the Department of Power and Propulsion and is Director of the Rolls‐Royce University Technology Centre in Performance Engineering. He has given many plenary/keynote speeches. He holds numerous patents, and has published widely. His research has been strongly supported by industry, the European Union and EPSRC. Professor Singh has an interest in novel cycles for power and propulsion, particularly in the context of the environment. He has received many accolades during the course of his career, the most recent being ASME’s International Gas Turbine Institute’s Annual International Aircraft Engine Technology Award for 2010, presented to one individual each year for sustained, innovative personal contribution to the field. Professor Singh is a past chairman of the Aerospace Division and continues his involvement s a board member of this and the International Society of Air Breathing Engines. (ISABE).Professor Singh has consulted for over 40 organisations, including gas turbine manufacturers.

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