Imagination with simulation

Imagination with simulation
Imagination with simulation

Siemens PLM Software explains how its LMS Imagine.Lab Amesim software helps to smooth out Aircelle's engine nacelle actuation systems.

As part of the Safran group, Aircelle is one of the European leaders in design, integration and manufacturing of nacelles for aircraft engines - as well as a leading nacelle integrator across markets, from business jets to wide-body airliners like the Airbus A380.

Within its simple shape and smoothness, the nacelle, the cover housing that encloses the engine, hides great complexity. It reduces noise and embeds de-icing capabilities, all in an aerodynamic shell to minimise drag. Last but not least, it also contains thrust reversing mechanisms that, together with the aircraft spoilers and landing gear braking system, contribute to the braking process of the aircraft.

Indeed, when the aircraft touches the ground, an actuation system inside the nacelle forces a door in the nacelle case, the so-called ‘thrust reverser door' to gape open; the air that rushes through the engine is thereby forced through this escape path in a contra-thrust direction, generating a force that helps the aircraft come to a halt.

The design of the aircraft's components must be robust enough to withstand difficult stress factors and critical environmental conditions, such as temperature and vibrations, etc. This is why, during the design phase, engineers at Aircelle carry out specific system and performance analyses on the actuating system using LMS solutions.

Smooth operators

The Nacelle Actuating Systems team at Aircelle employs LMS Imagine.Lab Amesim software from Siemens PLM Software to simulate actuation architectures and concepts under several working conditions, so as to better respond to customer performance requirements. However, the actuation system's performance is strongly dependent on its integration with the door structure.

“This is why it was important for us to have a tool that can easily import finite element modelling (FEM) door-structure data into the simulated actuation system,” explains Rodolphe Denis, head of Actuation System Mechanics and Simulation on the Nacelle Actuating Systems team at Aircelle. “The actuation systems we need to simulate are both electrical and hydraulic, and one has to recognise LMS Amesim is really strong in the field of hydraulic system simulation. This convinced us to test out LMS solutions, which was when we realised LMS Amesim performed really well in the electrical system simulation domain, too. We soon discovered technical support from Siemens PLM Software is really good.

“What we appreciate in LMS Amesim are its multi-domain capabilities, the solver's robustness, the simple ‘block-by-block' interface that still remains open to customisation with LMS Amesim, and to integration of other modelling languages, like Modelica – an aspect that shouldn't be underestimated.”

LMS, LMS Imagine.Lab, and LMS Imagine.Lab Amesim are trademarks or registered trademarks of Siemens Industry Software NV or any of its affiliates.

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