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Article

Hyeong-Uk Park, Joon Chung and Ohyun Kwon

The purpose of this paper is a development of a virtual flight test framework with derivative design optimization. Aircraft manufactures and engineers have been putting…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is a development of a virtual flight test framework with derivative design optimization. Aircraft manufactures and engineers have been putting significant effort into the design process to lower the cost of development and time to a minimum. In terms of flight tests and aircraft certification, implementing simulation and virtual test techniques may be a sufficient method in achieving these goals. In addition to simulation and virtual test, a derivative design can be implemented to satisfy different market demands and technical changes while reducing development cost and time.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, a derivative design optimization was applied to Expedition 350, a small piston engine powered aircraft developed by Found Aircraft in Canada. A derivative that changes the manned aircraft to an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle for payload delivery was considered. An optimum configuration was obtained while enhancing the endurance of the UAV. The multidisciplinary design optimization module of the framework represents the optimized configuration and additional parameters for the simulator. These values were implemented in the simulator and generated the aircraft model for simulation. Two aircraft models were generated for the flight test.

Findings

The optimization process delivered the UAV derivative of Expedition E350, and it had increased endurance up to 21.7 hours. The original and optimized models were implemented into virtual flight test. The cruise performance exhibited less than 10 per cent error on cruise performance between the original model and Pilots Operating Handbook (POH). The dynamic stability of original and optimized models was tested by checking Phugoid, short period, Dutch roll and spiral roll modes. Both models exhibited stable dynamic stability characteristics.

Practical implications

The original Expedition 350 was generated to verify the accuracy of the simulation data by comparing its result with actual flight test data. The optimized model was generated to evaluate the optimization results. Ultimately, the virtual flight test framework with an aircraft derivative design was proposed in this research. The additional module for derivative design optimization was developed and its results were implemented to commercial off-the-shelf simulators.

Originality/value

This paper proposed the application of UAV derivative design optimization for the virtual flight test framework. The methodology included the optimization of UAV derivative utilizing MDO and virtual flight testing of an optimized result with a flight simulator.

Details

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, vol. 90 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1748-8842

Keywords

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Article

Hyeong-Uk Park, Jae-Woo Lee, Joon Chung and Kamran Behdinan

The purpose of this paper is to study the consideration of uncertainty from analysis modules for aircraft conceptual design by implementing uncertainty-based design…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study the consideration of uncertainty from analysis modules for aircraft conceptual design by implementing uncertainty-based design optimization methods. Reliability-Based Design Optimization (RBDO), Possibility-Based Design Optimization (PBDO) and Robust Design Optimization (RDO) methods were developed to handle uncertainties of design optimization. The RBDO method is found suitable for uncertain parameters when sufficient information is available. On the other hand, the PBDO method is proposed when uncertain parameters have insufficient information. The RDO method can apply to both cases. The RBDO, PBDO and RDO methods were considered with the Multidisciplinary Design Optimization (MDO) method to generate conservative design results when low fidelity analysis tools are used.

Design/methodology/approach

Methods combining MDO with RBDO, PBDO and RDO were developed and have been applied to a numerical analysis and an aircraft conceptual design. This research evaluates and compares the characteristics of each method in both cases.

Findings

The RBDO result can be improved when the amount of data concerning uncertain parameters is increased. Conversely, increasing information regarding uncertain parameters does not improve the PBDO result. The PBDO provides a conservative result when less information about uncertain parameters is available.

Research limitations/implications

The formulation of RDO is more complex than other methods. If the uncertainty information is increased in aircraft conceptual design case, the accuracy of RBDO will be enhanced.

Practical implications

This research increases the probability of a feasible design when it considers the uncertainty. This result gives more practical optimization results on a conceptual design level for fabrication.

Originality/value

It is RBDO, PBDO and RDO methods combined with MDO that satisfy the target probability when the uncertainties of low fidelity analysis models are considered.

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