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Aerospace, Volume 7, Issue 9 (September 2020) – 20 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The New Space Economy encourages constellations of satellites, which are being proposed in large numbers by private companies. They will provide communication, enable global monitoring of Earth, and enhance space observation. Mostly enabled by technology miniaturization, satellite constellations require a coordinated effort to face the technological limits in spacecraft operations and space traffic. This work provides an overview of the available experience in constellation operations and of the challenges still to be faced for making large constellations a reality. Sharing existing resources and developing further artificial intelligence in a coordinated effort, those challenges can be tackled effectively. View this paper.
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Article
Strain Measurement on Cracks Using Fiber Bragg Gratings for Use in Aircraft Composite Skin Repairs
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 138; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090138 - 22 Sep 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1193
Abstract
Fiber Bragg grating (FBG) sensors have been widely used for measurements of strain and temperature in a host of different applications, including aerospace in composite wings, fuselage structures, and other critical components. Here, we report on a method to measure highly localized intense [...] Read more.
Fiber Bragg grating (FBG) sensors have been widely used for measurements of strain and temperature in a host of different applications, including aerospace in composite wings, fuselage structures, and other critical components. Here, we report on a method to measure highly localized intense stress fields, generated at the initialization point of a crack, or crack-tip, using Fiber Bragg Gratings (FBG) inscribed in highly photosensitive hydrogenated germanium and boron co-doped fiber. From the spectral characteristics of short and long FBGs, bonded on a test aluminum coupon with a crack, which simulated damaged skins of an aircraft, the local stresses near the cracks were measured and assessed. As a case study, bespoke composite repair patches were designed and bonded on a coupon, incorporating a number of gratings to monitor the stress distribution with applied force in the composite patch, near the crack. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical and Fiber Optical Sensors for Aerospace Applications)
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Article
Aircraft Pilots Workload Analysis: Heart Rate Variability Objective Measures and NASA-Task Load Index Subjective Evaluation
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 137; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090137 - 16 Sep 2020
Cited by 13 | Viewed by 2131
Abstract
Workload and fatigue of aircraft pilots represent an argument of great interest in the framework of human factors and a pivotal point to be considered in aviation safety. 75% of aircraft accidents are related to human errors that, in most cases, are due [...] Read more.
Workload and fatigue of aircraft pilots represent an argument of great interest in the framework of human factors and a pivotal point to be considered in aviation safety. 75% of aircraft accidents are related to human errors that, in most cases, are due to high level of mental workload and fatigue. There exist several subjective or objective metrics to quantify the pilots’ workload level, with both linear and nonlinear relationships reported in the literature. The main research objective of the present work is to analyze the relationships between objective and subjective workload measurements by looking for a correlation between metrics belonging to the subjective and biometric rating methods. More particularly, the Heart Rate Variability (HRV) is used for the objective analysis, whereas the NASA-TLX questionnaire is the tool chosen for the subjective evaluation of the workload. Two different flight scenarios were considered for the studies: the take-off phase with the initial climb and the final approach phase with the landing. A Maneuver Error Index (MEI) is also introduced to evaluate the pilot flight performance according to mission requirements. Both qualitative and quantitative correlation analyses were performed among the MEI, subjective and objective measurements. Monotonic relationships were found within the HRV indexes, and a nonlinear relationship is proposed among NASA-TLX and HRV indexes. These findings suggest that the relationship between workload, biometric data, and performance indexes are characterized by intricate patterns of nonlinear relationships. Full article
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Article
In-Flight Test Campaign to Validate PIO Detection and Assessment Tools
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 136; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090136 - 10 Sep 2020
Viewed by 1594
Abstract
This paper describes a joint research campaign conducted by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the National Research Council Canada (NRC) to explore methods and techniques to expose rotorcraft pilot-induced oscillations (PIOs) during flight testing. A flight test campaign was conducted at NRC [...] Read more.
This paper describes a joint research campaign conducted by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the National Research Council Canada (NRC) to explore methods and techniques to expose rotorcraft pilot-induced oscillations (PIOs) during flight testing. A flight test campaign was conducted at NRC using the Bell 205 experimental aircraft. Results show that, particularly for the lateral axis, ADS-33 tasks can be successfully applied to expose PIO tendencies. Novel subjective and objective criteria were used during the test campaign. PIO prediction boundaries of the objective phase-aggression criteria (PAC) detection algorithm were validated through results obtained. This was the first use of PAC with data recorded in-flight. To collect subjective feedback, the aircraft–pilot coupling (APC) scale was used. This was the first use of the novel scale in-flight and received favourable feedback from the evaluation pilot. Modifications to ADS-33 mission tasks were found to successfully improve the ability to consistently expose PIOs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rotorcraft)
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Article
A Method for Improved Flight Testing of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Using Multisine Inputs
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 135; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090135 - 10 Sep 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1209
Abstract
Unless a segregated airspace and the corresponding clearances can be afforded, flight testing of remotely piloted aircraft is often done near the ground and within visual line-of-sight. In addition to the increased exposure to turbulence, this setup also limits the available time for [...] Read more.
Unless a segregated airspace and the corresponding clearances can be afforded, flight testing of remotely piloted aircraft is often done near the ground and within visual line-of-sight. In addition to the increased exposure to turbulence, this setup also limits the available time for test manoeuvres on each pass, especially for subscale demonstrators with a relatively high wing loading and flight speed. A suitable testing procedure, efficient excitation signals and a robust system identification method are therefore fundamental. Here, the authors use ground-based flight control augmentation to inject multisine signals with low correlation between the different inputs. Focusing on initial flight-envelope expansion, where linear regression is common, this paper also describes the improvement of an existing frequency-domain method by using an instrumental variable (IV) approach to better handle turbulence and measurement noise and to enable real-time identification analysis. Both simulations and real flight tests on a subscale demonstrator are presented. The results show that the combination of multisine input signals and the enhanced frequency-domain method is an effective way of improving flight testing of remotely piloted aircraft in confined airspace. Full article
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Article
A Generalized Approach to Operational, Globally Optimal Aircraft Mission Performance Evaluation, with Application to Direct Lift Control
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 134; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090134 - 09 Sep 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2131
Abstract
A unified approach to aircraft mission performance assessment is presented in this work. It provides a detailed and flexible formulation to simulate a complete commercial aviation mission. Based on optimal control theory, with consistent injection of rules and procedures typical of aeronautical operations, [...] Read more.
A unified approach to aircraft mission performance assessment is presented in this work. It provides a detailed and flexible formulation to simulate a complete commercial aviation mission. Based on optimal control theory, with consistent injection of rules and procedures typical of aeronautical operations, it relies on generalized mathematical and flight mechanics models, thereby being applicable to aircraft with very distinct configurations. It is employed for an extensive evaluation of the performance of a conventional commercial aircraft, and of an unconventional box-wing aircraft, referred to as the PrandtlPlane. The PrandtlPlane features redundant control surfaces, and it is able to employ Direct Lift Control. To demonstrate the versatility of the performance evaluation approach, the mission-level benefits of using Direct Lift Control as an unconventional control technique are assessed. The PrandtlPlane is seen to be competitive in terms of its fuel consumption per passenger per kilometer. However, this beneficial fuel performance comes at the price of slower flight. The benefits of using Direct Lift are present but marginal, both in terms of fuel consumption and flight time. Nonetheless, enabling Direct Lift Control results in a broader range of viable trajectories, such that the aircraft no longer requires cruise-climb for maximum fuel economy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flight Simulation)
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Review
Large Constellations of Small Satellites: A Survey of Near Future Challenges and Missions
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 133; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090133 - 07 Sep 2020
Cited by 33 | Viewed by 4262
Abstract
Constellations of satellites are being proposed in large numbers; most of them are expected to be in orbit within the next decade. They will provide communication to unserved and underserved communities, enable global monitoring of Earth and enhance space observation. Mostly enabled by [...] Read more.
Constellations of satellites are being proposed in large numbers; most of them are expected to be in orbit within the next decade. They will provide communication to unserved and underserved communities, enable global monitoring of Earth and enhance space observation. Mostly enabled by technology miniaturization, satellite constellations require a coordinated effort to face the technological limits in spacecraft operations and space traffic. At the moment in fact, no cost-effective infrastructure is available to withstand coordinated flight of large fleets of satellites. In order for large constellations to be sustainable, there is the need to efficiently integrate and use them in the current space framework. This review paper provides an overview of the available experience in constellation operations and statistical trends about upcoming constellations at the moment of writing. It highlights also the tools most often proposed in the analyzed works to overcome constellation management issues, such as applications of machine learning/artificial intelligence and resource/infrastructure sharing. As such, it is intended to be a useful resource for both identifying emerging trends in satellite constellations, and enabling technologies still requiring substantial development efforts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Aerospace Sciences and Technology)
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Article
Deep Neural Network Feature Selection Approaches for Data-Driven Prognostic Model of Aircraft Engines
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 132; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090132 - 04 Sep 2020
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 2480
Abstract
Predicting Remaining Useful Life (RUL) of systems has played an important role in various fields of reliability engineering analysis, including in aircraft engines. RUL prediction is critically an important part of Prognostics and Health Management (PHM), which is the reliability science that is [...] Read more.
Predicting Remaining Useful Life (RUL) of systems has played an important role in various fields of reliability engineering analysis, including in aircraft engines. RUL prediction is critically an important part of Prognostics and Health Management (PHM), which is the reliability science that is aimed at increasing the reliability of the system and, in turn, reducing the maintenance cost. The majority of the PHM models proposed during the past few years have shown a significant increase in the amount of data-driven deployments. While more complex data-driven models are often associated with higher accuracy, there is a corresponding need to reduce model complexity. One possible way to reduce the complexity of the model is to use the features (attributes or variables) selection and dimensionality reduction methods prior to the model training process. In this work, the effectiveness of multiple filter and wrapper feature selection methods (correlation analysis, relief forward/backward selection, and others), along with Principal Component Analysis (PCA) as a dimensionality reduction method, was investigated. A basis algorithm of deep learning, Feedforward Artificial Neural Network (FFNN), was used as a benchmark modeling algorithm. All those approaches can also be applied to the prognostics of an aircraft gas turbine engines. In this paper, the aircraft gas turbine engines data from NASA Ames prognostics data repository was used to test the effectiveness of the filter and wrapper feature selection methods not only for the vanilla FFNN model but also for Deep Neural Network (DNN) model. The findings show that applying feature selection methods helps to improve overall model accuracy and significantly reduced the complexity of the models. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fault Detection and Prognostics in Aerospace Engineering)
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Article
The Two-Point Boundary-Value Problem for Rocket Trajectories
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 131; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090131 - 02 Sep 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1591
Abstract
The two dimensional gravity turn problem is addressed allowing for the effects of variable rocket mass due to propellant consumption, thrust and thrust vector angle, lift and drag forces at an angle-of-attack and atmospheric mass density varying with altitude; Coriolis and centrifugal forces [...] Read more.
The two dimensional gravity turn problem is addressed allowing for the effects of variable rocket mass due to propellant consumption, thrust and thrust vector angle, lift and drag forces at an angle-of-attack and atmospheric mass density varying with altitude; Coriolis and centrifugal forces are neglected. Three distinct analytical solutions are obtained for constant: propellant flow rate, thrust, thrust vector angle, angle-of-attack and acceleration of gravity; the lift and drag are assumed to be proportional to the square of velocity, and the mass density is assumed to decrease exponentially with altitude. The method III uses power series of time for the horizontal (downrange) and vertical (altitude) coordinates; the method II replaces the altitude as variable by the atmospheric mass density and method I by its inverse. Thus the three solutions have distinct properties, e.g., I and III converge best close to lift-off and II close to burn-out. The three solutions: I, II, III, can be applied in isolation (or matched in combination) to the single-point boundary-value problem (SPBVP) of finding the trajectory with given initial conditions at launch. They can also be used as pairs in six distinct ways (I + II, I + III, II + III or reverse orders) to solve the two-point boundary-value problem (TPBVP), viz.: from given conditions at launch achieve one (not more) specified condition at burn-out, e.g., ã desired horizontal velocity for payload release. Each of the six distinct combinations of methods of addressing the TPBVP shares three features: (i) it can determine if there is a solution, viz. if the rocket has enough performance to reach the desired burn-out condition; (ii) if the desired burn-out condition is achievable it can calculate the complete trajectory from launch to burn-out; (iii) it can determine the range of achievable burn-out conditions, e.g., the minimum and maximum possible horizontal velocity at burn-out for given initial conditions at launch. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Aerospace Sciences and Technology)
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Editorial
Airlift Maintenance and Sustainment: The Indirect Costs
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 130; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090130 - 02 Sep 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2184
Abstract
This article aims to present and discuss a set of technical matters affecting the maintenance and sustainment cost of military transport aircraft (airlifters). An overview of the military aviation technical support system is provided, in conjunction with a high level discussion on the [...] Read more.
This article aims to present and discuss a set of technical matters affecting the maintenance and sustainment cost of military transport aircraft (airlifters). An overview of the military aviation technical support system is provided, in conjunction with a high level discussion on the life cycle cost. Four technical support pillars are defined as part of this analysis: supply, restoration and upgrade, engineering and regulatory compliance. A focused discussion on airlift sustainment factors, based on past experience, is used to identify technical considerations that can be used for the evaluation of new aircraft. A number of technical considerations which are key for cost purposes are identified and mapped against the defined technical support pillars, related to engineering and technical support and airworthiness management aspects. Important practical technical considerations are identified, discussed and critiqued under an independent lens. This article can stimulate discussion of the maintenance and sustainment costs of airlifters, both within military aviation operators and the defence industry community but also within the civil aircraft maintenance industry. Full article
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Article
A Preliminary Investigation of Maintenance Contributions to Commercial Air Transport Accidents
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 129; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090129 - 02 Sep 2020
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2715
Abstract
Aircraft maintenance includes all the tasks needed to ensure an aircraft’s continuing airworthiness. Accidents that result from these maintenance activities can be used to assess safety. This research seeks to undertake a preliminary investigation of accidents that have maintenance contributions. An exploratory design [...] Read more.
Aircraft maintenance includes all the tasks needed to ensure an aircraft’s continuing airworthiness. Accidents that result from these maintenance activities can be used to assess safety. This research seeks to undertake a preliminary investigation of accidents that have maintenance contributions. An exploratory design was utilized, which commenced with a content analysis of the accidents with maintenance contributions (n = 35) in the official ICAO accident data set (N = 1277), followed by a quantitative ex-post facto study. Results showed that maintenance contributions are involved in 2.8 ± 0.9% of ICAO official accidents. Maintenance accidents were also found to be more likely to have one or more fatalities (20%), compared to all ICAO official accidents (14.7%). The number of accidents with maintenance contributions per year was also found to have reduced over the period of the study; this rate was statistically significantly greater than for all accidents (5%/year, relative to 2%/year). Results showed that aircraft between 10 and 20 years old were most commonly involved in accidents with maintenance contributions, while aircraft older than 18 years were more likely to result in a hull loss, and aircraft older than 34 years were more likely to result in a fatality. Full article
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Article
Procedures for the Integration of Drones into the Airspace Based on U-Space Services
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 128; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090128 - 01 Sep 2020
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 1789
Abstract
A safe integration of drones into the airspace is fundamental to unblock the potential of drone applications. U-space is the drone traffic management solution for Europe, intended to handle a large number of drones in the airspace, especially at very low level (VLL). [...] Read more.
A safe integration of drones into the airspace is fundamental to unblock the potential of drone applications. U-space is the drone traffic management solution for Europe, intended to handle a large number of drones in the airspace, especially at very low level (VLL). This paper presents the procedures we have designed and tested in real flights in the SAFEDRONE European project to pave the way for a safe integration of drones into the airspace using U-space services. We include three important aspects: Design of procedures related to no-fly zones, ensure separation with manned aircraft, and autonomous non-cooperative detect-and-avoid (DAA) technologies. A specific U-space architecture has been designed and implemented for flight campaigns with up to eight drones with different configurations and a manned aircraft. From this experience, specific recommendations about procedures to exit and avoiding no-fly zones are presented. Additionally, it has been concluded that the use of surveillance information of manned aircraft will allow a more efficient use of the airspace while maintaining a proper safety level, avoiding the creation of large geofence areas. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Unmanned Aircraft Traffic Management)
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Article
Leader–Follower Synchronization of Uncertain Euler–Lagrange Dynamics with Input Constraints
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 127; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090127 - 30 Aug 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1623
Abstract
This paper addresses the problem of leader–follower synchronization of uncertain Euler–Lagrange systems under input constraints. The problem is solved in a distributed model reference adaptive control framework that includes positive μ-modification to address input constraints. The proposed design has the distinguishing features [...] Read more.
This paper addresses the problem of leader–follower synchronization of uncertain Euler–Lagrange systems under input constraints. The problem is solved in a distributed model reference adaptive control framework that includes positive μ-modification to address input constraints. The proposed design has the distinguishing features of updating the gains to synchronize the uncertain systems and of providing stable adaptation in the presence of input saturation. By using a matching condition assumption, a distributed inverse dynamics architecture is adopted to guarantee convergence to common dynamics. The design is studied analytically, and its performance is validated in simulation using spacecraft dynamics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Small Satellite Formation Flying Motion Control and Attitude Dynamics)
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Article
Vision-Based Spacecraft Pose Estimation via a Deep Convolutional Neural Network for Noncooperative Docking Operations
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 126; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090126 - 30 Aug 2020
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2363
Abstract
The capture of a target spacecraft by a chaser is an on-orbit docking operation that requires an accurate, reliable, and robust object recognition algorithm. Vision-based guided spacecraft relative motion during close-proximity maneuvers has been consecutively applied using dynamic modeling as a spacecraft on-orbit [...] Read more.
The capture of a target spacecraft by a chaser is an on-orbit docking operation that requires an accurate, reliable, and robust object recognition algorithm. Vision-based guided spacecraft relative motion during close-proximity maneuvers has been consecutively applied using dynamic modeling as a spacecraft on-orbit service system. This research constructs a vision-based pose estimation model that performs image processing via a deep convolutional neural network. The pose estimation model was constructed by repurposing a modified pretrained GoogLeNet model with the available Unreal Engine 4 rendered dataset of the Soyuz spacecraft. In the implementation, the convolutional neural network learns from the data samples to create correlations between the images and the spacecraft’s six degrees-of-freedom parameters. The experiment has compared an exponential-based loss function and a weighted Euclidean-based loss function. Using the weighted Euclidean-based loss function, the implemented pose estimation model achieved moderately high performance with a position accuracy of 92.53 percent and an error of 1.2 m. The in-attitude prediction accuracy can reach 87.93 percent, and the errors in the three Euler angles do not exceed 7.6 degrees. This research can contribute to spacecraft detection and tracking problems. Although the finished vision-based model is specific to the environment of synthetic dataset, the model could be trained further to address actual docking operations in the future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Selected Papers from IAAI 2020)
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Article
Real Time Measurement of Airplane Flutter via Distributed Acoustic Sensing
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090125 - 29 Aug 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1293
Abstract
This research group has recently used the new technology Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) for the monitoring and the measurement of airplane flutter. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first such use for this new technology. Traditionally, the measurement of airplane flutter requires [...] Read more.
This research group has recently used the new technology Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) for the monitoring and the measurement of airplane flutter. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first such use for this new technology. Traditionally, the measurement of airplane flutter requires the mounting of a very large number of sensors on the wing being monitored, and extensive wiring must be connected to all these sensors. The new system and technology introduced in this paper dramatically reduces the hardware requirements in such an application: all the traditional sensors and wiring are replaced with one fiber optic cable with a diameter of 2 mm. An electro-optical system with the size of a desktop PC monitors simultaneously one or more of such fiber optic cables and detects/characterizes any mechanical disturbances on the cables. Theoretical and experimental results are given. Full article
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Article
Mathematical Modelling of Gimballed Tilt-Rotors for Real-Time Flight Simulation
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 124; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090124 - 28 Aug 2020
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1907
Abstract
This paper introduces a novel gimballed rotor mathematical model for real-time flight simulation of tilt-rotor aircraft and other vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) concepts, which improves the previous version of a multi-purpose rotor mathematical model developed by ZHAW and Politecnico di Torino as [...] Read more.
This paper introduces a novel gimballed rotor mathematical model for real-time flight simulation of tilt-rotor aircraft and other vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) concepts, which improves the previous version of a multi-purpose rotor mathematical model developed by ZHAW and Politecnico di Torino as part of a comprehensive flight simulation model of a tilt-rotor aircraft currently implemented in the Research and Didactics Simulator of ZHAW and used for research activities such as handling qualities studies and flight control systems development. In the novel model, a new formulation of the flapping dynamics is indroduced to account for the gimballed rotor and better suit current tilt-rotor designs (XV-15, V-22, AW-609). This paper describes the mathematical model and provides a generic formulation as well as a specific one for 3-blades proprotors. The method expresses the gimbal attitude but also considers the variation of each blade’s flapping due to the elasticity of the blades, so that the rotor coning angle can be represented. A validation of the mathematical model is performed against the available literature on the XV-15 Tilt-rotor aircraft and a comparison between the previous model is provided to show the improvements achieved. The results show a good correlation between the model and the reference data and the registered performance allow real-time flight simulation with pilot and hardware in the loop. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rotorcraft)
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Article
Numerical Simulation of the Anti-Icing Performance of Electric Heaters for Icing on the NACA 0012 Airfoil
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 123; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090123 - 27 Aug 2020
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1867
Abstract
Ice accretion is a phenomenon whereby super-cooled water droplets impinge and accrete on wall surfaces. It is well known that the icing may cause severe accidents via the deformation of airfoil shape and the shedding of the growing adhered ice. To prevent ice [...] Read more.
Ice accretion is a phenomenon whereby super-cooled water droplets impinge and accrete on wall surfaces. It is well known that the icing may cause severe accidents via the deformation of airfoil shape and the shedding of the growing adhered ice. To prevent ice accretion, electro-thermal heaters have recently been implemented as a de- and anti-icing device for aircraft wings. In this study, an icing simulation method for a two-dimensional airfoil with a heating surface was developed by modifying the extended Messinger model. The main modification is the computation of heat transfer from the airfoil wall and the run-back water temperature achieved by the heater. A numerical simulation is conducted based on an Euler–Lagrange method: a flow field around the airfoil is computed by an Eulerian method and droplet trajectories are computed by a Lagrangian method. The wall temperature distribution was validated by experiment. The results of the numerical and practical experiments were in reasonable agreement. The ice shape and aerodynamic performance of a NACA 0012 airfoil with a heater on the leading-edge surface were computed. The heating area changed from 1% to 10% of the chord length with a four-degree angle of attack. The simulation results reveal that the lift coefficient varies significantly with the heating area: when the heating area was 1.0% of the chord length, the lift coefficient was improved by up to 15%, owing to the flow separation instigated by the ice edge; increasing the heating area, the lift coefficient deteriorated, because the suction peak on the suction surface was attenuated by the ice formed. When the heating area exceeded 4.0% of the chord length, the lift coefficient recovered by up to 4%, because the large ice near the heater vanished. In contrast, the drag coefficient gradually decreased as the heating area increased. The present simulation method using the modified extended Messinger model is more suitable for de-icing simulations of both rime and glaze ice conditions, because it reproduces the thin ice layer formed behind the heater due to the runback phenomenon. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Deicing and Anti-Icing of Aircraft)
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Article
Dual-Satellite Lunar Global Navigation System Using Multi-Epoch Double-Differenced Pseudorange Observations
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 122; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090122 - 24 Aug 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 1517 | Correction
Abstract
In view of the upcoming missions to obtain resources from the lunar surface, it is essential to have highly-accurate navigation systems to locate surface vehicles in shadowed regions. In response, we propose a dual-satellite lunar navigation system that is based on a multi-epoch [...] Read more.
In view of the upcoming missions to obtain resources from the lunar surface, it is essential to have highly-accurate navigation systems to locate surface vehicles in shadowed regions. In response, we propose a dual-satellite lunar navigation system that is based on a multi-epoch double-differenced pseudorange observations (MDPO) algorithm. We used multi-epoch observations in a new way that reduces the number of navigation satellites required. In addition, the double-differenced pseudorange is used in order to eliminate the bias effects of the satellite and user clocks that conventional dual-satellite navigation algorithms did not fully take into account. Furthermore, a pre-known lunar digital elevation model is used to reduce the number of observations. The theoretical behavior of the MDPO algorithm was confirmed by simulation and the results indicate that user position accuracy can be several tens of meters with 95% probability (2drms) within a one-minute observation. Full article
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Article
Beyond Contrail Avoidance: Efficacy of Flight Altitude Changes to Minimise Contrail Climate Forcing
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 121; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090121 - 21 Aug 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2265
Abstract
Contrail cirrus introduce a short-lived but significant climate forcing that could be mitigated by small changes in aircraft cruising altitudes. This paper extends a recent study to evaluate the efficacy of several vertical flight diversion strategies to mitigate contrail climate forcing, and estimates [...] Read more.
Contrail cirrus introduce a short-lived but significant climate forcing that could be mitigated by small changes in aircraft cruising altitudes. This paper extends a recent study to evaluate the efficacy of several vertical flight diversion strategies to mitigate contrail climate forcing, and estimates impacts to air traffic management (ATM). We use six one-week periods of flight track data in the airspace above Japan (between May 2012 and March 2013), and simulate contrails using the contrail cirrus prediction model (CoCiP). Previous studies have predominantly optimised a diversion of every contrail-forming flight to minimise its formation or radiative forcing. However, our results show that these strategies produce a suboptimal outcome because most contrails have a short lifetime, and some have a cooling effect. Instead, a strategy that reroutes 15.3% of flights to avoid long-lived warming contrails, while allowing for cooling contrails, reduces the contrail energy forcing (EFcontrail) by 105% [91.8, 125%] with a total fuel penalty of 0.70% [0.66, 0.73%]. A minimum EFtotal strategy (contrails + CO2), diverting 20.1% of flights, reduces the EFcontrail by the same magnitude but also reduces the total fuel consumption by 0.40% [0.31, 0.47%]. For the diversion strategies explored, between 9% and 14% of diversions lead to a loss of separation standards between flights, demonstrating a modest scale of ATM impacts. These results show that small changes in flight altitudes are an opportunity for aviation to significantly and rapidly reduce its effect on the climate. Full article
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Article
Future Directions for Electric Propulsion Research
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 120; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090120 - 20 Aug 2020
Cited by 20 | Viewed by 3443
Abstract
The research challenges for electric propulsion technologies are examined in the context of s-curve development cycles. It is shown that the need for research is driven both by the application as well as relative maturity of the technology. For flight qualified systems such [...] Read more.
The research challenges for electric propulsion technologies are examined in the context of s-curve development cycles. It is shown that the need for research is driven both by the application as well as relative maturity of the technology. For flight qualified systems such as moderately-powered Hall thrusters and gridded ion thrusters, there are open questions related to testing fidelity and predictive modeling. For less developed technologies like large-scale electrospray arrays and pulsed inductive thrusters, the challenges include scalability and realizing theoretical performance. Strategies are discussed to address the challenges of both mature and developed technologies. With the aid of targeted numerical and experimental facility effects studies, the application of data-driven analyses, and the development of advanced power systems, many of these hurdles can be overcome in the near future. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Electric Propulsion)
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Article
Experimental Studies into the Analysis Required for the Durability Assessment of 7075 and 6061 Cold Spray Repairs to Military Aircraft
Aerospace 2020, 7(9), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7090119 - 19 Aug 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1490
Abstract
This paper presents an experimental study into the analysis required for the durability assessment of 7075 and 6061 cold spray repairs to military aircraft. To this end, it is first shown that provided the bulk stress in a 7075 cold spray coating can [...] Read more.
This paper presents an experimental study into the analysis required for the durability assessment of 7075 and 6061 cold spray repairs to military aircraft. To this end, it is first shown that provided the bulk stress in a 7075 cold spray coating can be kept beneath approximately 150 MPa, then the coating should not crack. A range of examples are presented in which the interface between the coating and the substrate only fails subsequent to crack growth in the substrate. We also show that failure of cold spray repaired/coated panels can also be due to the nucleation and growth of cracks in the substructure immediately adjacent to the coated/repaired region. As such, when performing a durability analysis for a cold spray repair, the growth of such small naturally occurring cracks, both at the interface and immediately adjacent to the ends of the coating, need to be accounted for. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ageing Aircraft and Additive Manufacturing)
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