Date of Award
MS in Aerospace Engineering
Aircraft structures have varying stiffness levels making them flexible. Consequently, this elastic property becomes increasingly important at high speeds affecting the flight dynamics of the aircraft. In high speed aircraft such as the F/A-18, elastic structural properties must be accounted for to ensure confidence in predicted flight dynamics in order to avoid adverse aeroelastic phenomena throughout flight.
Data from the F/A-18 Active Aeroelastic Wing (AAW) program was used to create aeroservoelastic (ASE) models at varying flight conditions. The discretized ASE models were integrated into the NASA Dryden F/A-18 simulator in parallel with the traditional 6-DOF (degrees-of-freedom) flight dynamics calculations to ensure minimal disruption to the existing operating framework of the simulator. An interpolation scheme was used to construct ASE models within the known flight condition models. Data was processed through the state-space ASE models to compute the elastic effects during flight. Total flight dynamics from the simulation were analyzed and showed expected behavior for the combined elastic and rigid-body components in flight.