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Altair to Showcase New Method of Optimizing Weight of Composite Fan Blades

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Troy-based Altair Engineering Inc. announced that it will deliver a paper presentation at ASME Turbo Expo 2011, describing a new application for optimizing the weight of composite fan blades using Altair’s HyperWorks suite of computer-aided design tools.

Altair also will welcome attendees to its exposition booth, where it will unveil two white papers, one on efficient model setup for aerospace engines and the other discussing optimized cooling passages on turbine blades.

The presentation, delivered by Altair executive director of global aerospace Robert Yancey, will highlight a paper by one of the turbo-machinery industry’s most renowned engineers, Altair’s J.S. Rao of Bangalore, India. Titled “Concept Optimal Design of Composite Fan Blades,” the paper outlines a procedure to determine the composite layout of a given baseline design for metallic fan blades.

Employing OptiStruct and other HyperWorks simulation, analysis and optimization solutions, the simulation process employs composite materials in place of titanium to gain a substantial weight savings, without affecting the performance of the engine blade.

ASME Turbo Expo 2011 will be held June 6-10 at the Vancouver Convention and Exposition Centre in Vancouver, British Columbia. Yancey will present Rao’s work on June 10 from 8-10 a.m. in session 21-1: Design of Gas Turbines and Components. Among the Altair staff at the conference will be the firm’s leading technical specialist in the turbo domain, chief applications engineer Michael Dambach.

“Composite fan blades are relatively new, and this is Altair’s first application of its popular HyperWorks software to fan blades,” Yancey said. “The turbine engine market has been our fastest-growing sector in the aerospace industry in recent years, and Altair’s new process is designed to provide custom templates to help aerospace engineers automate the complicated analysis involved in fan-blade design.”

Turbo Expo 2011 is sponsored by ASME (founded as the American Society of Mechanical Engineers) and is the largest and longest-running turbo machinery conference in the world.

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