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Stress Reduction in an Interstage Air Seal


Walter Huber (MTU Munich), Martin Fischer (MTU Munich) Gerald Himmler (FE-DESIGN GmbH Karlsruhe)
he rules for aircraft engine certification (Type Certificate) are given by aviation regulation authorities, e.g. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Joint Aviation Administration (Europe) or Luftfahrtbundesamt (LBA, Germany). All the regulations are very similar. Among other things the regulations include analyses and tests that need to be carried out. As rotor disks are classified as critical parts (high rotational energy), a failure of which could hazard the aircraft, high demands are made on development, production and certification. Some important certification requirements for rotor disks are listed below (FAA: Federal Aviation Regulations (FAR)-extract): e.g. FAR-33.27 Integrity - Turbine, compressor, fan, and turbo supercharger rotors (a) Turbine, compressor, fan, and turbo supercharger rotors must have sufficient strength to withstand the test conditions specified in paragraph (c) of this section. (b) The design and functioning of engine control devices, systems, and instruments must give reasonable assurance that those engine operating limitations that affect turbine, compressor, and turbo supercharger rotor structural integrity will not be exceeded in service. (c) The most critically stressed rotor component (except blades) of each turbine, compressor, and fan, including integral drum rotors and centrifugal compressors in an engine or turbo supercharger, as determined by analysis or other acceptable means, must be tested for a period of 5 minutes. FAR-33.14 Life Limit - Start-stop cyclic stress (low cycle fatigue). By a procedure approved by the FAA, operating limitations must be established which specify the maximum allowable number of start-stop stress cycles for each rotor structural part (such as discs, spacers, hubs, and shafts of the compressors and turbines), the failure of which could produce a hazard to the aircraft. Page 24

FAR-33.87 FAR-33.88 FAR-33.19,63,83 FAR-33.19, 23,94 FAR-33.90 FAR-33.65,63,89 FAR-33.87

Cyclic engine test at max. conditions - 150 hr Block Test Engine test at 70F over max. temperature Low Rotor Stress Test Fan Blade Loss Overhaul Certification Test Operability Test Starts / False Starts

Specifications
Aircraft engine manufacturers (OEMs, Type Certificate Holder) define the engine specification. This document provides all the important requirements for the engine like performance deck, boundaries (e.g. external loads, load profiles ( LCF-missions), or interfaces) or target figures (e.g. life limits, weight, efficiencies, life cycle costs or Inflight Shutdown Rates (IFSD), ...).

Failure Modes
The most important criterion for high energy rotating disks is the Rotor Integrity (FAR-33.27). The requirement states that the disks must withstand 120% of the maximum allowable rotor speed at maximum temperatures. This must be demonstrated by a rig part test for a period of 5 minutes. In conjunction with the integrity the life requirement (e.g. 20,000 flights LCF life - engine spec) must be met at minimum weight. This life figure is defined as the life limit (FAR 33.14) and gives the operating life of the part. Besides these criteria other points like High Cycle Fatigue (HCF), creep, in-elastic instability, Thermo Mechanical Fatigue (TMF), ... must also be checked. The engine tests required (FAR 33.87 Block Test (105 hrs), FAR 33.88 - Over Temperature Test, ...) must also be withstood in service conditions. In particular, the Block Test runs in which much more severe loading than the engine would experience in service. This cyclic test combines maximum speed with maximum temperatures, which can

January 2004

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only be reached by mistuning the engine. Therefore occasionally it happens that parts are designed to withstand the Block Test, rather than being in service for 20,000 flights.

Figure 3: Example: Complex 3D rotor feature

The Inner Air Seal Problem Problem description


Figure 1: Block Test Cycle Diagram 25 Cycles => 150h Test

Burst Analysis
The burst analysis combines worst case steady state temperature, maximum speed and maximum pull loads. Initially the procedure is based on a linear elastic 2D-FEM analysis (basic model). An elastic-plastic analysis is performed for verification and to define the final burst contour. After FAR 33.27 the analytical results must be demonstrated by a rig test.

An engine thrust increase development program revealed high bending stresses for a Low Pressure Turbine Inner Air Seal (IAS). Detailed analysis showed that the root cause was increased thermal gradients. A parameter based optimization could not resolve the stress situation. The maximum stress location moved, but the magnitude did not change. So a benchmark with TOSCA (MSC.Construct) was undertaken.

Mission Life Analysis


The LCF life of any location is based on its Fan stress/temperature history. Therefore mission analyses are performed on the 2D basic model. The design mission (spec) is broken down into discrete load steps. For each load step the transient loads (mechanical and thermal) are applied and analysed in a quasi steady state. The loads correspond to an average 50 hours engine. The analysis provides the stress temperature time history information for any location of the rotor. For notched areas (bolt holes, disk slots, ...) a stress concentration factor is added. Depending on the specific project the LCF lives are based on minimum LCF life curve and/or cyclic rig tests. The most critical LCF locations must be cross checked with more detailed analyses (sensitivity studies for tolerances, 3D analyses for complex 3D features - stress concentration factors, ...)

LPC
Low Pressue Compressor

HPC
High Pressue Compressor

HPT
High Pressue Turbine

LPT
Low Pressue Turbine

Combustion Chamber Figure 4: Turbofan Engine

Figure 2: Typical Civil Design Mission

Figure 5: Area of interest

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The Solution
The original design had a constant wall thickness of 2 mm in the conical area (Figure 6). The MSC.Nastran static nonlinear solution SOL 106 was used, because no TOSCA (MSC.Construct) MSC.Marc interface was available at this Figure 6: Original shape of Air Seal time. MSC.Marc is the solver preferred by MTU for analysing the rotor components, not only because of the nonlinear capabilities but also due to the integration with inhouse developed tools for transfering transient temperature results, calculated by different departments, and predicting life calculations with special jet engine fatigue codes. The existing MSC.Marc model was extruded to a 5 degree segment for this purpose and GAP elements were introduced to model the contact with the rotor. This was necessary because the detailed analysis shows that there would be a contact due to the thermal expansion. The existing axial symmetry was defined using MPC equations. Figure 7 shows the load and boundary conditions.

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Figure 8: Design Region

Results
An optimized solution was obtained within 4 iterations, which means 5 Nastran SOL 106 (solver) runs. The stress could be reduced by 17 %. The structural life of the air seal now fulfils the required minimum of 20,000 LCF cycles and the geometric changes are very small. Figure 9 shows the new shape whereas Figures 10 and 11 show the new displacement and stress distribution.

Figure 9: Shape comparison of optimization result and redesign Figure 7: Load and Boundary Conditions

The temperature distribution across the upper and lower surface of the air seal was assumed to be constant during the optimization due to the expected small changes of the geometry, but the difference in thermal expansion was taken into account. The definition of the design region was the subject of the next step. Only some areas could be modified, since the geometry of the rotor design was already fixed. Also, the manufacturing tools used should remain unchanged. The overall length, the size and location of the mounting and the height (top radius) and size of the fins (due to the leakage) were fixed from the beginning. Therefore only upper and lower surfaces of the conical area were allowed to be modified (Figure 8). Minimize Stress was chosen as the objective function with a mass (volume) constraint set to be constant Page 26 January 2004

Figure 10: Displacement

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References
FE-DESIGN GmbH: TOSCA 4.5 Users Manual Martin Fischer: MTU Internal Lecture about Rotor analysis 2002 Sauter, J, Lauber, B. (2000) Innovative Produktentstehung durch den Einsatz von Topologieund Gestaltoptimierungswerkzeugen im frhen Entwicklungsprozess, Innovationsforum Virtuelle Produktentstehung, Berlin (Germany). Schnack, E., Sprl U., Iancu G. (1988) Gradientless Shape Optimization with FEM, VDI Forschungsheft 647. MSC.Software and FE-DESIGN: MSC.Construct and TOSCA Data sheets of

TOSCA is a modular system for non-parametric structural optimization. Topology and shape optimization of FE models with an arbitrary number of load cases and boundary conditions can be performed with TOSCA. A parameterization of the model is not needed, which reduces the modeling effort and allows greater flexibility in the optimized structure. The optimization algorithms are based upon mechanical optimality criteria, which makes the optimization fast and robust. Structural optimization with TOSCA is an iterative process. The structural response of the component is calculated in each iteration with an external FE solver. The high quality of the results is guaranteed by using approved and accepted industry standard solvers. Further benefits for the user are that he can work with his preferred solver in his preferred preand postprocessing environment and that he does not need additional training for a new solver. Existing FE models can be used directly in the optimization. A closed development process can be achieved by the interaction of the components of TOSCA from the first concept to the optimized geometry in the CAD system.

Figure 11: Stress Distribution and Iteration History

Summary
MTU Aero Engines belongs to the 6 largest companies in the aircraft propulsion field including development, manufacture and repair of commercial and military engines. For development, MSC.Marc / MSC.Nastran have been used for life and stress analyses of high energy rotating structures for more than 20 years. Shape optimization of components is a key issue in the developing process of rotating parts. It was possible to fulfil the low cycle fatigue life requirements by using TOSCA (MSC.Construct) by introducing only small changes in the air seal geometry as required by various boundary conditions.

Contact
Gerald Himler FE-Design GmbH E gerald.himler@fe-design.de

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