Technology Selection for Optimal Power Distribution Efficiency in a Turboelectric Propulsion System
Turboelectric propulsion is a technology that can potentially reduce aircraft noise, increase fuel efficiency, and decrease harmful emissions. In a turbo-electric system, the propulsor (fans) is no longer connected to the turbine through a mechanical connection. Instead, a superconducting generator connected to a gas turbine produces electrical power which is delivered to distributed fans. This configuration can potentially decrease fuel burn by 10% . One of the primary challenges in implementing turboelectric electric propulsion is designing the power distribution system to transmit power from the generator to the fans. The power distribution system is required to transmit 40 MW of power from the generator to the electrical loads on the aircraft. A conventional aircraft distribution cannot efficiently or reliably transmit this large amount of power; therefore, new power distribution technologies must be considered.