CFD-Based Evaluation of Flow and Temperature Characteristics of Airflow in an Aircraft Cockpit
  • Xiaosai Duan, Suihuai Yu*, Jianjie Chu, Dengkai Chen and Zhaojing Su
Key Laboratory of Industrial Design and Ergonomics, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi’an, 710072, China
* Corresponding Author: Suihuai Yu. Email:
Received 25 March 2021; Accepted 01 September 2021 ; Published online 08 October 2021
The rational design of airflow distribution is of great importance for comfort and energy conservation. Several numerical investigations of flow and temperature characteristics in cockpits have been performed to study the distinct airflow distribution. This study developed the coupled heat transfer model of radiation, convection, and heat conduction for the cockpit flight environment. A three-dimensional physical model was created and a shear stress transfer (SST) k-w turbulence model was well verified with a high prediction accuracy of 91% for the experimental data. The strong inhomogeneous flow and temperature distribution were captured for various initial operating conditions (inlet temperature, inlet pressure, and gravitational acceleration). The results indicated that the common feature of the flow field was stable in the middle part of the cockpit, while the temperature field showed a large temperature gradient near the cockpit’s top region. It was also found that there was remarkable consistency in the distributed features, regardless of the applied initial operating conditions. Additionally, the mass flux and the top heat source greatly affected the flow and temperature characteristics. This study suggests that an optimized operating condition does exist and that this condition makes the flow and temperature field more stable in the cockpit. The corresponding results can provide necessary theoretical guidance for the further design of the cockpit structure.
Aircraft cockpit; airflow distribution; flow characteristics; temperature characteristics; inhomogeneous behaviors