|dc.description.abstract||A number of well-established aircraft manufacturers, such as Airbus, Boeing, or Bell, along
with new startups have begun developing flying prototypes of electric Vertical Takeoff and
Landing vehicles (eVTOL). To certify this emerging type of air mobility vehicles for
commercial use, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is considering adjusting
currently used certification procedures for small aircraft to include eVTOL vehicles. One of
the hurdles to this approach is that eVTOL vehicles are neither able to glide like a small,
fixed-wing aircraft, nor to autorotate, like a helicopter, if the batteries are depleted.
Therefore, active energy management and energy awareness by the pilot is needed to safely
operate an eVTOL vehicle. To do this, the cockpit must be equipped with an energy
management display, informing the pilot about momentary power demand and about
projected energy expenditures. To assess the operational capabilities and safety of eVTOL
vehicles, the civil aviation authorities require simulation tools to evaluate the energy
consumption of standard flight profiles. No published research addresses the need for
energy-based trajectory simulation and for real-time power draw prediction. This thesis fills
this capability gap by developing a way to simulate power and energy consumption for an
eVTOL vehicle over variety of user specified two-dimensional flight profiles.
Depending on the propulsion approach, four major eVTOL vehicle types are recognized by
the model based on the currently developed prototypes: tilt propulsion, tilt wing, distributed
propulsion, and fixed propulsion. The model accepts user input specifications for these
vehicle types, along with information on the desired flight profile and environmental disturbances. To allow for multiple flight profile iterations to be run in sequence, the model
also accepts batch input for the range of flight profile variations to be simulated. Forces
acting on the vehicle at each time step of tis flight are then computed, and power and energy
related outputs are generated.
The first-principle power and energy model developed within this thesis can serve as a first
step towards an inflight power and energy management system for eVTOL vehicles, to
satisfy the near future certification requirements associated with these vehicles. The model
provides estimates on instantaneous battery power draw throughout the simulated flight
profile along with energy requirements for the vertical, transition, and cruise flight phase.
Although generating results within expected theoretical magnitudes, the model is yet to be