Optimizing the Aerodynamic Efficiency of an Aircraft Nacelle
The optimal aerodynamic design while substantially reducing the costs
The nacelle is the cover or housing that holds engines, equipment, or fuel on an aircraft. Its design is crucial to the overall aerodynamic efficiency of the aircraft as it often holds key components such as the engine that cannot themselves be easily optimized for aerodynamic efficiency. Given the components the nacelle may house, certain properties, such as the air mass flow intake needed for the engine, needs to be maintained, while reducing the overall drag to increase aerodynamic efficiency.
Complex CFD models often take weeks to create, making optimization time-consuming and often times impractical. The challenge was to find the optimal aerodynamic design while substantially reducing the costs associated with traditional CFD modeling.