CFD applied to In-Flight Ice Accretion Simulation and design of Ice Protection Systems

Elia Cipolato

EnginSoft Germany


In-Flight Ice Accretion has been recognised as the cause of more than 600 accidents only in the last 10 years.
Ice protection systems are designed to limit the effects of ice accretion on an aircraft, as it changes the shape of airfoils and flight control surfaces; in the worst case, this leads to a complete loss of control of the aircraft.
It is possible to use CFD analysis to design thermal ice protection systems in a verifiable and reliable way, totally integrated with aerodynamics. This supports the design of more effective systems that will pass certification faster, sustain less in-service problems and minimize post-certification adjustments or flight limitations.
The FENSAP-ICE Icing software is made by 4 interconnected truly 3D modules driven by a Graphical User Interface: the FENSAP CFD flow solver, the DROP3D droplet impingement and the ICE3D ice accretion and shape. Finally, the CHT3D conjugate heat transfer modules are able to simulate different types of ice protection systems, evaluating their efficiency in terms of capability in preventing ice formation or in removing ice already grown.