SYMPOSIA PAPER Published: 01 January 1992

Air Frame Considerations in Fuel Thermal Stability for Commercial Supersonic Flight


Airframe fuel system thermal environments for anticipated supersonic flight in the Mach 2.0 to Mach 4.5 range are calculated and discussed. Aerodynamic heating can result in tank fuel temperatures as high as 100°C, and airframe cooling requirements may raise the temperature at the engine pump inlet by another 50°C. Results of earlier tests on formation of fuel deposits in tanks show tank deposits to be inconsequential for speeds below Mach 3.0, although verification of this for nonmetallic tank materials and current fuels is recommended. Adaptions to fuel thermal stability specifications and testing may be required for supersonic flight. These could include higher specification test temperature limits, extended residence time or recirculation in the thermal stability test section, heat presoaking of fuel test samples, and elimination of prefiltering before the test section. Development of a test for the formation of fuel tank deposits may be required if speeds above Mach 3.0 are anticipated.

Author Information

Schmidt, JE
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Developed by Committee: D02
Pages: 34–53
DOI: 10.1520/STP15039S
ISBN-EB: 978-0-8031-5198-7
ISBN-13: 978-0-8031-1431-9