Development of Parametric Power Generation and Distribution Subsystem Models at the Conceptual Aircraft Design Stage


The ongoing efforts to reduce aviation related greenhouse gas emissions and fuel burn have led to advancements in power generation and distribution (PG&D) subsystem technology. Due to the absence of historical data, PG&D subsystem models must be created from first-order analysis without compromising crucial information on their characteristics. This paper demonstrates the development of parametric, physics-based subsystem models such as battery, electric motor, power distribution and management system, and propeller speed reduction unit for rapid and low-cost sizing, simulation and analysis at early design stages. A special focus was put on rechargeable battery technology and implementing a dynamic (rather than steady-state) discharge behavior into the propulsion architecture. A methodology to integrate the developed subsystem models was presented. A sample application was also provided to demonstrate the combined capabilities of the models. To this end, the models were applied within a sample parallel hybrid electric architecture using Dornier 328 as a test bed. The subsystem behaviors under varying power requirements were then analyzed. Finally, the importance of having more dimensionality at the subsystem level at early design stages was highlighted by comparing the results of two different architectural choices.

55th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting, AIAA SciTech Forum