In this study, a hybrid electric helicopter for air-taxi operations is considered. The drivetrain includes a turboshaft engine and two electric machines, fed by a lithium ion battery. In previous works, some of the authors developed a simple but thorough modelling approach for the electric path of the power system that was validated by means of experimental data from literature. In this investigation simulation results from the Gas-turbine Simulation Program (GSP) commercial environment were used to develop and validate an off design model for the turboshaft. The second innovative contribution of the paper is the application of Dynamic Programming to four different missions of the helicopter to quantify the fuel saving potentiality of hybridization and also as benchmark for future online control strategies. A constraint was considered in the investigation to allow at any time the electric backup in case of engine failure. The results of DPM showed that it is possible to obtain a reduction of fuel burn from 12% to 24% (with respect to using only the engine to move the rotor) depending on the specification of the mission and the state of health of the battery. Moreover, it was proved that charging the battery on board is not necessary in this kind of application.

Optimal Energy Management of a Hybrid Electric Helicopter for Urban Air-Mobility

Donateo, Teresa
Investigation
;
Pascalis, Claudia Lucia de
Software
;
Strafella, Luciano
Software
;
Ficarella, Antonio
Funding Acquisition
2021-01-01

Abstract

In this study, a hybrid electric helicopter for air-taxi operations is considered. The drivetrain includes a turboshaft engine and two electric machines, fed by a lithium ion battery. In previous works, some of the authors developed a simple but thorough modelling approach for the electric path of the power system that was validated by means of experimental data from literature. In this investigation simulation results from the Gas-turbine Simulation Program (GSP) commercial environment were used to develop and validate an off design model for the turboshaft. The second innovative contribution of the paper is the application of Dynamic Programming to four different missions of the helicopter to quantify the fuel saving potentiality of hybridization and also as benchmark for future online control strategies. A constraint was considered in the investigation to allow at any time the electric backup in case of engine failure. The results of DPM showed that it is possible to obtain a reduction of fuel burn from 12% to 24% (with respect to using only the engine to move the rotor) depending on the specification of the mission and the state of health of the battery. Moreover, it was proved that charging the battery on board is not necessary in this kind of application.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11587/448060
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