Constrained Multi-Objective Aerofoil Design Using a Multi-Level Optimisation Strategy

L. Cameron, J. Early, R. McRoberts, M. Price

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A novel approach for the multi-objective design optimisation of aerofoil profiles is presented. The proposed method aims to exploit the relative strengths of global and local optimisation algorithms, whilst using surrogate models to limit the number of computationally expensive CFD simulations required. The local search stage utilises a re-parameterisation scheme that increases the flexibility of the geometry description by iteratively increasing the number of design variables, enabling superior designs to be generated with minimal user intervention. Capability of the algorithm is demonstrated via the conceptual design of aerofoil sections for use on a lightweight laminar flow business jet. The design case is formulated to account for take-off performance while reducing sensitivity to leading edge contamination. The algorithm successfully manipulates boundary layer transition location to provide a potential set of aerofoils that represent the trade-offs between drag at cruise and climb conditions in the presence of a challenging constraint set. Variations in the underlying flow physics between Pareto-optimal aerofoils are examined to aid understanding of the mechanisms that drive the trade-offs in objective functions.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3982
Pages (from-to)833-854
Number of pages22
JournalThe Aeronautical Journal
Issue number1217
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2015


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