Multilevel decomposition procedure for efficient design optimization of helicopter rotor blades

Aditi Chattopadhyay, Thomas R. McCarthy, Narayanan Pagaldipti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


This paper addresses a multilevel decomposition procedure, for efficient design optimization of helicopter blades, with the coupling of aerodynamics, blade dynamics, aeroelasticity, and structures. The multidisciplinary optimization problem is decomposed into three levels. The rotor is optimized for improved aerodynamic performance at the first level. At the second level, the objective is to improve the dynamic and aeroelastic characteristics of the rotor. A structural optimization is performed at the third level. Interdisciplinary coupling is established through the use of optimal sensitivity derivatives. The Kreisselmeier-Steinhauser function approach is used to formulate the optimization problem when multiple design objectives are involved. A nonlinear programming technique and an approximate analysis procedure are used for optimization. Results obtained show significant improvements in the rotor aerodynamic, dynamic, and structural characteristics, when compared with a reference or baseline rotor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)223-230
Number of pages8
JournalAIAA journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering


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