Barber-Nichols Inc. (BNI) has been engineering, producing, and testing specialty turbomachinery since 1966. Our commercial and proprietary analysis tools are test-verified and ensure new products will perform as specified.
Computational Fluid Dynamic (CFD) Analysis enables BNI to streamline the design process by helping engineers predict how gasses and liquids will behave as they move through complex components and systems. With more than 45 years of experience, BNI has extensive emperical data with which to reconcile CFD predictions.
Barber-Nichols' engineering group has extensive expertise in the areas of thermal, stress, and vibration analysis. BNI can analyze complex, rotating or static component parts and complicated assemblies using two and three-dimensional Finite Element Analysis (FEA). Using FEA, a component or an assembly is evaluated for loading conditions, including pressure, centrifugal load, thermally-induced stress, and contact load. BNI has the ability to evaluate components in either linear-elastic or elastic-plastic regions. Vibration analysis is used to predict modal frequencies, forced response to cyclic loading, statistical response to random vibration spectrums, and to evaluate a structure's resistance to shock loads.
Finally, Rotor Dynamic Analysis is critical for ensuring the smooth operation of high-speed turbomachinery. BNI performs damped and undamped analysis to ensure that no critical frequencies are present in the operating speed range. Torsional analysis is performed on machinery trains and on highly sensitive equipment. BNI uses XLRotor® software to perform the required analyses; additionally, comprehensive empirical data is used to reconcile software predictions. Additionally, Barber-Nichols analyzes bearing stiffness and damping. A.B. Jones® High-Speed Bearing and XLRotor® software is used to calculate the stiffness of high speed rolling element bearings and the stiffness and damping of fluid film bearings are calculated with XLRotor® and ARMD® software.
Liquid Oxygen Impeller CFD Case Study
BNI recently used Computational Fluid Dynamic Analysis in two high-profile development projects. First, CFD Analysis was used to evaluate cavitation potential in a rocket engine turbopump. The Liquid Oxygen (LOX) side of the pump called for a suction-specific speed greater than 40,000. During the preliminary design phase, potential impeller blade configurations were evaluated based on surface-pressure distribution.
Transonic Fan Case Study
BNI teamed with Lockheed Martin to work on an unmanned, lighter-than-air vehicle that will maintain a geostationary position at an altitude of 65,000 feet. The vehicle, known as a High Altitude Airship (HAA), is being built by Lockheed Martin and is funded by the Missile Defense Agency. Specifically, Barber-Nichols designed and produced the transonic fans that control the vehicles internal pressure and cause it to descend. To operate properly at altitude, the fan blade's tips move in excess of 333 m/s (1,100 ft/s). As gas accelerates through the fan's converging and diverging blades, it reaches a relative supersonic speed. CFD Analysis drove the fan's blade design and the sonic barrier was crossed at a point that minimized shock losses.
|Model LMA-01-000 Transonic Fan in Lockheed Martin's High Altitude Airship (HAA)|