The main objectives of FIRST were to deliver a fuel spray atomisation prediction capability, which can represent the unsteadiness of the atomisation process, for gas turbine injectors and to deliver an improved soot / particulate modelling methodology for combustion Computational fluid dynamics (CFD).

SCITEK Consultants Experomental Fluid Mechanics for CFD Validation

Before the FIRST project there was very little information available to describe the properties of atomisation from Rolls-Royce aero engine rich and lean burn fuel injectors. Lefebvre correlations were typically used to estimate the fuel spray boundary conditions for CFD modelling of these injectors in combustor flows. This coarse method used for numerical modelling made accurate prediction of combustor flow fields, and consequently emissions, difficult. Actual measurements of the fuel particle sizes and velocities were required before further progress could be made in improving modelling techniques.

A new test facility was built in the combustion laboratories in Rolls-Royce Derby that was specifically designed to enable PDA measurements of fuel sprays from engine injectors. All of the PDA and flow visualisation measurements for this study were performed by SCITEK. Test geometries were designed and made that represented a single sector of an engine combustor so that the spray conditions were more closely representative of reality. Lean and rich burn fuel injectors were tested at a range of conditions relevant to their respective engine cycles and detailed measurements of droplet sizes and velocities were made at numerous locations. The work was extended to include sprays from alternative fuels as a comparison to a standard kerosene spray.

The measurements of the spray from the fuel injectors have now provided the boundary conditions required for CFD modelling of Rolls-Royce engine combustors and has described the progression of the atomisation process as the flow moves downstream away from the fuel injectors. This is vital information for the improvement of numerical models to predict engine reacting flows. The CFD models can now be validated against the spray measurements for a wide range of geometries and conditions and a step change in modelling accuracy will be the result. Future designs of aero engine combustors and fuel injectors will benefit from the improved modelling accuracy.


Pdf_icon_32x32 FIRST Overview Brochure


NEWAC is an Integrated Project co-funded by the European Commission within the Sixth Framework Program, with global air traffic forecast to grow an an average annual rate of around 5% over the next 20 years, the NEWAC project aims to reduce CO2 and NOx emissions through the development of new engine core configurations with heat management, active systems and advanced component technology.


Previous technology programmes have already identified concepts and technologies to achieve the ambitious environmental targets set by ACARE. Innovative core configurations will be developed and validated under the NEWAC programme to strongly reduce CO2 and NOX emis- sions. These concepts will use heat management (intercooler, cooling air cooler, recuperator), improved combustion, active systems and improved core components. NEWAC will design and manufacture these innovative components and perform model, rig and core tests to validate the critical technologies. 40 partners from the European leading engine industry, the engine industry supply chain, key European research institutes and SMEs with specific expertise will jointly develop new aero engine core technology under the €71M programme of which €40M are funded by the EC.


The STREAMLINE project is a collaborative R&D project, partly funded by the7th Framework Programme of the European Commission.  The project includes 21 organisations coordinated by Rolls-Royce Power Engineering and has a budget of 10.9 million euros.

STREAMLINEThe STREAMLINE project (Strategic research for innovative marine propulsion concepts) has investigated several State-of-the-Art propulsion system and new propulsion combined with advanced CFD for accurate analysis and design of the propulsors.

SCITEK were involved in WP2.2, ‘High efficiency waterjets at low speed’.  Waterjet systems represent a unique solution for propulsion of fast vessels in the speed range of 25-45 knots and even more. In spite of unparalleled performance at high speeds, a major drawback of waterjets is that for lower speeds this propulsive solution becomes inefficient as compared with conventional screw propeller technology. To overcome such limitations and achieve a full exploitation of waterjet propulsion, WP22 aimed to develop techniques to increase low speed performance and hence provide higher efficiency across a wider operational profile.

Intake design is typically a compromise between high and low speed performance. However, by applying aerospace expertise to the design and optimisation of the waterjet intake duct the low speed efficiency was improved without a significant effect on the high speed performance.

Pdf_icon_32x32Download STREAMLINE CFD Poster.


The Dream Project is one of the European Projects with which SCITEK work in partnership, led by Rolls-Royce, it is composed of 44 partners from 13 countries, providing the best expertise and capability from the EU aeronautics industry and Russia.

The DREAM project is the response of the engine community to commercial and environmental pressures that have come about mainly as a result of two main factors, the political pressure to reduce CO2 having increased considerably since the publication of the ACARE goals and the increased cost of Jet A-1 fuel.


SCITEK Consultants provides Research and development services with expertise in thermo-fluids test and measurement, rig design and manufacture, and in Instrumentation and software. We also have in house manufacturing capability and our customer base includes the Aerospace, Fuel-Cell and Automotive industries.

We offer CFD, CAD, FEA, Frequency and Dynamic analysis services as well as producing bespoke instruments for various applications including vibration and combustion studies. WE also own and run a research gas turbine engine (Rolls-Royce Viper 201) which so far has been used in the development and testing of prototype sensors.  SCITEK Consultants has 12 members of staff, the majority of whom have an Aerospace R&D background. Our offices are based in Derby UK.

SCITEK and Dream

In Dream Project Package 2.3 two pylon designs will be installed on the open rotor rig to study the generation of noise and employ schemes that will potentially reduce noise to the uninstalled levels. Our involvement will be to design, make and instrument these pylons and to ensure their compatibility at the ARA and DNW wind tunnels. We are also involved in package 2.3 in the design and manufacture of a pitch control rig that will be used to evaluate the actuation system, rotor sensing technology, and the open rotor control laws.


Taking part in DREAM will broaden our knowledge and experience in the design and manufacture of R&D rigs and in instrumentation and testing. It also gives us a unique opportunity to work in a stimulating international environment.

The benefits from DREAM are in know-how, and it also acts as a catalyst for expansion by providing us with greater visibility within the aerospace industry.