research in flight®

Placeholder Picture


FlightStream® is a surface vorticity flow solver designed to allow users to develop optimized designs for compressible and incompressible subsonic vehicles as well as transonic vehicles. Applications range from modeling UAVs, High-Altitude-Aerostats, high subsonic transport and military aircraft, marine propellers and under-water vehicles, wind turbines, propellers, store separation, high-lift components and more!

Equipped with the state-of-the-art unstructured surface-mesh compressible-flow vorticity solver, FlightStream® eliminates the costly process of volume mesh generation and mesh-dependency on flow-field solutions and stability. FlightStream® provides the ability to design airplanes within an optimization pipeline in a fraction of the time taken by conventional CFD solvers. FlightStream® integrates with Research in Flight’s proprietary CAD library, allowing users to import their geometries designed in any commercial CAD/CAE software (such as SolidWorks, AutoCAD, NX, CATIA etc.). The FlightStream® vorticity solver works from very small mesh sizes compared to traditional CFD solvers and serves to reduce user input in generating high fidelity surface meshes

FlightStream® is one of the most versatile and powerful aerodynamic analysis tools for aerospace, marine and alternative energy applications today.


Placeholder Picture

Modeling Propellers

Steady-state propeller actuators for the airplane designer.

Placeholder Picture

Modeling propellers in steady flow in using the FlightStream® relies on a propeller actuator discs model. It is designed to work with our surface-mesh vorticity solver, and the actuator discs allow for the evaluation of volumetric effects of the propeller momentum, at no reduction in solver speed and agility. Designed to be computationally complimentary, you can add as many propeller actuators as your airplane needs. Cascade the actuators on top of each other to simulate contra-rotating effects. Place them in any orientation, size or a local coordinate system. All you need is the thrust, power and RPM of the propeller to simulate the steady-state effects. This is a perfect tool for the aircraft designer!

the propeller modeling landscape in flightstream®

Placeholder Picture
See the solution accuracy

Modeling Jet Engines

Introducing the FlightStream® Engine Exhaust Actuator. Model engine exhaust jets without a volume mesh.

Placeholder Picture

FlightStream® allows you to model engine inlets, exhausts and engine propulsion performance during the same solver run. Application of velocity and mass-flow boundary conditions at the engine inlet and actuator-based exhaust models for jet exhaust allows you to set up a realistic aero-propulsive environment that correctly models the fluid flow. Use of the NASA Numerical Propulsion System Simulation (NPSS) toolbox in FlightStream® provides a high-fidelity model of the internal design and performance parameters of the engine and establishes a realistic propulsive performance evaluation.

Placeholder Picture
Placeholder Picture
Placeholder Picture
Placeholder Picture

Velocity and mass-flow boundaries to simulate engine inlets

Jet exhaust actuators can be cascaded to include core and fan exhausts

N.P.S.S. integration allows real-time engine analysis

Advanced post-processing and data analysis of engine inflow conditions

pressure loads for structural components

finite element analysis using FlightStream® as the fluid flow solver.

Placeholder Picture

FlightStream® uses its incredible speed to allow the structural analysis engineer, to evaluate fluid interaction effects on their components in a rapid manner. Use FlightStream® to generate pressure forces around the component, map load distributions and moments about user-defined coordinate systems. FlightStream allows you to map its solutions from the geometry to any structural analysis geometry input file, allowing you to integrate FlightStream® into your analysis pipeline. FlightStream® is also capable of time-dependent solutions to model structural deflections. FlightStream® is compatible with all commercial structural analysis software.

Modeling Propellers in detail

moving reference frames for modeling rotating geometries

Placeholder Picture

FlightStream® has focused tools depending on the user's needs as a conceptual aircraft designer, the propulsion engineer, maritime designers or the fundamental fluid aerodynamicist. The moving reference frame approach is designed for the propeller designers, whether in the air or underwater! A simple setup allows you to model your geometries in a rotating frame, perfectly suited for the detailed modeling of propeller design and performance. Since the flow solver works on a surface mesh, no advanced volumetric meshing is required from the user, but volumetric effects at any point in space around the geometry can still be evaluated using our post-processing tools! FlightStream also has toolboxes to allow the user to generate performance data such as propeller or turbine Thrust and power coefficients versus advance ratios, efficiencies, flow separation regions, cavitation and more!

Learn about marine propeller applications in FlightStream®

High-lift Aerodynamics

Witness the incredible ease with which FlightStream® handles geometries with high-lift devices

Placeholder Picture

FlightStream® allows you to model the presence and effects of high-lift devices (such as deployed flaps, slats and spoilers) with ease. FlightStream® is capable of generating relaxed vorticity wakes for geometries with closely located high-lift devices, allowing for the modeling of the slat wake flowing over the wing and the wing wake flowing over the flaps. FlightStream® has been used for validation studies on high-lift geometries where the aerodynamic loads and pressure distributions have been generated in minutes.

Placeholder Picture
Placeholder Picture

Use local coordinate systems to control the motion of high-lift devices

Generate solutions to real high-lift geometries in seconds!

See the solution accuracy

the unsteady solver

Time-dependent motion solver for the propulsion engineer.

Placeholder Picture

The propeller actuators work great when you want to simulate propeller effects in steady-state and when you want to keep the number of blade-related parameters to zero. But what if you have the blade data, and want to investigate the time-based aero-propulsive effects? No problem. Use our FlightStream® unsteady surface vorticity solver. You can create motion types and attach them to surfaces on your geometry. Use these to simulate propeller rotation and evaluate the time-dependent effects on the wing as well as the propeller blades! Since the flow solver works on a surface mesh, no advanced volumetric modeling is required from the user, but volumetric effects at any point in space around the geometry can still be evaluated using our post-processing tools!

validation studies

flightstream® is extensively validated with experimental data

Placeholder Picture
Learn more about our validation studies



Comprehensive user interface and automated workflows
Solver-integrated graphics rendering
Integrated post-processing capabilities
Get sectional load & moment distributions for each component
Plot surface and off-body streamlines
Sectional planes show slices of the fluid flow
Point-cloud flow data extraction
Abaqus integration for structural modeling
Surface flow cross-sections 

Placeholder Picture

would you like to try flightstream®?

Get your hands on FlightStream® and see how it performs for your engineering applications