Due to their potential for significant fuel consumption savings, Counter-Rotating Open Rotors (CRORs) are currently being considered as an alternative to high-bypass turbofans. When CRORs are mounted on an aircraft, several ‘installation effects’ arise which are not present when the engine is operated in isolation. This paper investigates how flow features arising from one such effect — the angle-of-attack of the engine centre-line relative to the oncoming flow — can influence the design of CROR engines. Three-dimensional full-annulus unsteady CFD simulations are used to predict the time-varying flow field experienced by each rotor and emphasis is put on the interaction of the front-rotor wake and tip vortex with the rear-rotor.

A parametric study is presented that quantifies the rotor-rotor interaction as a function of the angle-of-attack. It is shown that angle-of-attack operation significantly changes the flow field and the unsteady lift on both rotors. In particular, a frequency analysis shows that the unsteady lift exhibits sidebands around the rotor-rotor interaction frequencies. Further, a non-linear increase in the total rear-rotor tip unsteadiness is observed for moderate and high angles-of-attack.

The results presented in this paper demonstrate that common techniques used to mitigate CROR noise, such as modifying the rotor-rotor axial spacing and rear-rotor crop, can not be applied correctly unless angle-of-attack effects are taken into account.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.