The efficiency of aircraft gas turbine engines is sensitive to the distance between the tips of its turbine blades and its shroud, which serves as its containment structure. Maintaining tighter clearance between these components has been shown to increase turbine efficiency, increase fuel efficiency, and reduce the turbine inlet temperature, and this correlates to a longer time-on-wing for the engine. Therefore, there is a desire to maintain a tight clearance in the turbine, which requires fast response active clearance control. Fast response active tip clearance control will require an actuator to modify the physical or effective tip clearance in the turbine. This paper evaluates the requirements of a generic active turbine tip clearance actuator for a modern commercial aircraft engine using the Commercial Modular Aero-Propulsion System Simulation 40k (C-MAPSS40k) software that has previously been integrated with a dynamic tip clearance model. A parametric study was performed in an attempt to evaluate requirements for control actuators in terms of bandwidth, rate limits, saturation limits, and deadband. Constraints on the weight of the actuation system and some considerations as to the force which the actuator must be capable of exerting and maintaining are also investigated. From the results, the relevant range of the evaluated actuator parameters can be extracted. Some additional discussion is provided on the challenges posed by the tip clearance control problem and the implications for future small core aircraft engines.

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