Surface roughness & heat transfer improved predictions for aircraft ice-Accretion modeling

Yiqiang Han, Jose Palacios

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


In an effort to improve the accuracy of current aircraft ice-Accretion prediction tools, experimental and analytical studies have been conducted on airfoils roughened by natural ice accretion. Surface roughness introduced by ice accretion and its effect on surface convective heat transfer have been tested and modeled, based on 10 experimental test cases. A novel scaling coefficient relating the Stanton and Reynolds numbers was introduced for heat transfer comparison and modeling in turbulent regime. By coupling the ice roughness and heat transfer models together with LEWICE ice-Accretion tool, an improved ice-Accretion model has been achieved. Four experimental ice shapes were obtained at the Adverse Environment Rotor Test Stand laboratory for model validation. The new surface-roughness model had very good agreement in both overall ice shape and ice thickness at the stagnation line (within 5% discrepancy for four experimental cases), whereas LEWICE prediction constantly underestimated the stagnation ice thickness by 30%. The overprediction of ice-horn lengths was also addressed by the proposed model. In one of the glaze-To-rime-regime cases, LEWICE overpredicted the upper and lower horn lengths by 32 and 22%, respectively, whereas the new model prediction resulted in ±3% accuracy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1318-1331
Number of pages14
JournalAIAA journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aerospace Engineering


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