Performance analysis of a 1:5 model-scale ERICA tiltrotor is presented, obtained using CFD. Three configurations, corresponding to minimum speed and high load for an aeroplane, corridor, and helicopter mode; are considered. For the aeroplane case, numerical simulations were based on the Unsteady Reynolds Averaged Navier-Stokes equations, where the rotor blades were fully resolved. The use of a uniform actuator disk was put forward as a means to quantify effect on the total loads. Comparisons with experimental data showed a good agreement and revealed the 4/rev. blade passage effect on the loads for the fully resolved approach. Results of the CFD with the uniform actuator disk also produced adequate estimates of the loads at the aerodynamic interaction zone.
The corridor and helicopter mode configurations were also computed using a uniform actuator disk. For the corridor case, results showed an excellent agreement with the experiment data at cross sections on the fuselage, fixed wing, and tiltable wing of the ERICA tiltrotor. The helicopter CFD predictions were in fair agreement with the DNW-LLF experiment on the fuselage and fixed wing, while the peak of CP distribution was under-predicted the region of aerodynamic interaction. The overall agreement with the experimental data demonstrated the capability of the present CFD method to accurately predict tiltrotor flows.