Feasibility study of a hybrid ice protection system

Tobias Strobl, Stefan Storm, David Thompson, Mirko Hornung, Frank Thielecke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


Akey design factor impacting the use of electrical power to drive aircraft systems and subsystems is energy efficiency. With the design of an all-electric, hybrid ice protection system, energy consumption can be reduced to a large extent. The hybridization is achieved through an intentional partitioning of the ice at the stagnation line by melting via surface heating and ice shedding in the unheated regions of the airfoil surface via an electromechanical deicing systembased on piezoelectric multilayer actuators. To further reduce energy consumption, the adhesion forces between the ice and the airfoil surface can be reduced using an ultrasmooth,nanostructured surfacewithwater-and ice-repellent properties that encourages ice shedding. Experimental investigations, performed in a laboratory-scale icing wind tunnel for a smallscale configuration, reveal that the hybrid approach for ice protection reliably sheds the ice accreted on the airfoil surface.Comparedwith an all-thermoelectric systemfor ice protection investigated in the same icingwind tunnel facility using identical test conditions, the hybrid approachwas demonstrated to reduce power consumption up to 91%. Beyond the laboratory tests, numerical simulations of the hybrid strategy analogous to the one used for the experiments are performed. The time history of the residual ice shapes aft of the heated region is simulated using the ice accretion prediction software LEWICE2D for a wet-running anti-icing subsystem. Finite element analyses of the effects of the piezoelectric actuators are then performed using Abaqus to investigate the ice-shedding capability in the unheated regions of the airfoil surface. The numerical results show that the variation in the different ice shapes affects the stiffness of themodel. It becomes obvious that the critical threshold for ice shedding, that is, the stiffness that determineswhether residual ice delaminates fromthe airfoil surface, is affected to aminor extent by the interfacial area and predominantly by the thickness of the ice layer. Further, the simulation results correlate well with experimental results obtained in the icing wind tunnel. It can be concluded that reliable operation of the hybrid system for ice shedding can be guaranteed when using a harmonic sweep excitation able to excite the structure at its resonance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2064-2076
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Aircraft
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2015


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