Trouble designing the right thermal aircraft? Here’s how Airbus Helicopters does it

By Adele Dolique

On-demand webinar now available :Design the right aircraft: Thermal management strategies using simulation


The hydraulic system is to the airplane what the circulatory system is to the human body. Similar to the human body, the hydraulic system combines fluids and electrical and/or mechanical energy to perform critical functions like landing and flying.

Like the human circulatory system that oscillates between 36 and 37°C – depending on the static or dynamic activities of the body – the temperature of the hydraulic system must remain stable. One of the industrial challenges aircraft manufacturers is to find the right thermal trade-off between all aircraft attributes, including the hydraulic system, of course.

That being said, creating “well-balanced” thermal management in airplanes is crucial for comfort and safety reasons, but it isn’t easy. With industry trends, such as electrification or the use of new materials, designing the right aircraft thermal management strategy remains a challenge for aerospace engineers and experts.

Recent improvements in integrated aircraft simulation models allow integrated system performance analysis, including the thermal balance, on the aircraft level. This aircraft thermal management advancement lets engineering teams make critical decisions about the aircraft architecture earlier in the design process.

In this on-demand webinar, Benoit Genot and Jean-Baptiste Lopez-Velasco from Airbus Helicopters will explain how they leveraged Simcenter Amesim to accurately predict and verify the thermal-hydraulic system performance from the early stage system sizing to a fully integrated design.Webinar-aero-thermal-600x300.jpg

Join the on-demand version of our live webinar and learn how Simcenter simulation tools and methodologies not only helped Airbus Helicopters, but can also help you with your engineering challenges. Discover how – with the aid of early stage aircraft thermal management simulation – you can evaluate strategies to maintain the heat-balance of your aircraft program including:

  • Fuel as a heat sink

  • Balancing attributes for ECS Design

  • Evaluation of global aircraft thermal management

This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at