Rectangular-to-elliptical shape transition intakes with various leading-edge for performance enhancement

Daegi Yeom, Seong kyun Im

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


This study explores the efficiency of streamline-tracing intake in scramjets within the hypersonic domain, where the Mach number (Ma) exceeds five. Focusing on a rectangular-to-elliptical shape transition intake following Busemann streamlines with a contraction ratio of 4.67, tailored for Ma 7.1, this study innovates beyond traditional design method, employing numerical simulations to interpolate iso-Ma points and shape the leading edge of the intake to enhance the performance. Three distinct leading-edge designs—using a sinusoidal function to closely track all iso-Ma points, a convex second-order polynomial to bolster compression and mass flow, and a concave polynomial to widen the starting envelope—were conceptualized. The research included experiments with 0.06 scaled models for validation and performance assessments of full-scale intakes using three-dimensional viscous simulations. Key performance metrics, such as the pressure ratio, total pressure recovery, mass flow rate, and exit Ma, were evaluated to reveal the capability of all three intake designs to operate effectively over a broad Ma range (3–7). A key finding of this study is the ability to selectively enhance either the compression capability or the total pressure recovery by strategically designing the leading edge of the intake through interpolation methods. This study underscores the importance of using numerical simulation results in the notching process as an effective design strategy to handle a wide range of off-design conditions with fixed geometry and achieve performance improvements in scramjet intakes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)12-26
Number of pages15
JournalActa Astronautica
Publication statusPublished - 2024 Jul

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 IAA


  • Busemann streamline
  • Rectangular-to-elliptical shape transition
  • Scramjet
  • Streamline-tracing inlet

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering


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