Special Issue "Flight Simulation"

A special issue of Aerospace (ISSN 2226-4310).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 September 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Agostino De Marco
Guest Editor
Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Naples Federico II, Napoli, Italy
Interests: aerospace engineering; flight mechanics; flight dynamics; flight simulation; applied aerodynamics; CFD; naval architecture; renewable energy

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Flight simulation (FS) has an important role in many fields. Today, the simulation of atmospheric and space flight conditions in ground-based simulators and special-purpose aircraft is used for aircrew training as well as for design, development, and evaluation of aerospace vehicles, systems, and subsystems. FS is presently an important step in aircraft and rotorcraft design, where visions are converted into a virtual reality. The fidelity of simulation systems ranges widely; some aim to recreate an environment or system to such a high degree that it is difficult to distinguish between the simulator and the real system, while others simply aim to recreate a small part of a system, or to present the system as a whole in a more compact fashion.

The FS research community faces new technical challenges when technology and requirements change and evolve. Future generations of FS systems will involve challenges in vehicle modeling techniques and tools as well as environmental modeling, use of computing resources, avionics and instrumentation, motion base technology, and visual system technology.

In the field of Modeling and Simulation of Aircraft Dynamics, Systems, and Environments, including uninhabited aerial systems (UAS) and urban air mobility (UAM) vehicles, multidisciplinary modeling and simulation that spans across domains is becoming increasingly popular. At present, novel modeling and simulation approaches that integrate two, or more, domains are possible─for example, integrating structural dynamics and computational aerodynamics.

In the field of Modeling and Simulation for Certification and Qualification, FS has become an essential tool in the certification process of new commercial aircraft. Furthermore, the introduction of autonomous aircraft in civil airspace, such as UAS and UAM vehicles, requires novel certification approaches based on modeling and simulation. Key research approaches in this context will be those that aim at expanding the use of simulation for handling quality certification of new and derivative aircraft designs, the use of simulation for the certification of autonomous aircraft, and the design of flight tests to validate these simulations.

An important area of research is that involving all aspects in the design, development, and use of motion systems, visual systems, and other simulator hardware, as well as image generation. Novel motion configurations and hardware as well as the application of motion for research and training will exploit emerging motion and visual system technologies and will improve simulation fidelity and effectiveness.

A wide research area where FS is highly involved is that of Model-Based Development, that is, a modern approach to engineering that positions models as the core assets of systems development. Novel techniques and new tools in model-based development in the aerospace field are rapidly penetrating the modeling and simulation aerospace design community as a means of reducing cost while increasing productivity. Key research topics in this context will deal with the use of model-, software-, processor-, and hardware-in-the-loop simulations. Areas of interest span from these approaches, also called X-in-the-loop simulations, to system integration laboratories for hardware-in-the-loop testing of modern fly-by-wire systems, integration and testing of modern avionics and synthetic vision systems, and autonomous flight systems integration and testing.

Dr. Agostino De Marco
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Aerospace is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • flight dynamics modelling
  • multidisciplinary modeling and simulation
  • real-time simulation
  • human-in-the-loop vehicle simulation
  • model-in-the-loop simulation
  • software-in-the-loop simulation
  • processor-in-the-loop simulation
  • model-based design
  • handling quality certification
  • motion systems
  • visual systems
  • simulation fidelity

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Open AccessArticle
Conceptual Design, Flying, and Handling Qualities Assessment of a Blended Wing Body (BWB) Aircraft by Using an Engineering Flight Simulator
Aerospace 2020, 7(5), 51; https://doi.org/10.3390/aerospace7050051 - 28 Apr 2020
The Blended Wing Body (BWB) configuration is considered to have the potential of providing significant advantages when compared to conventional aircraft designs. At the same time, numerous studies have reported that technical challenges exist in many areas of its design, including stability and [...] Read more.
The Blended Wing Body (BWB) configuration is considered to have the potential of providing significant advantages when compared to conventional aircraft designs. At the same time, numerous studies have reported that technical challenges exist in many areas of its design, including stability and control. This study aims to create a novel BWB design to test its flying and handling qualities using an engineering flight simulator and as such, to identify potential design solutions which will enhance its controllability and manoeuvrability characteristics. This aircraft is aimed toward the commercial sector with a range of 3000 nautical miles, carrying 200 passengers. The BWB design was flight tested at an engineering flight simulator to first determine its static stability through a standard commercial mission profile, and then to determine its dynamic stability characteristics through standard dynamic modes. Its flying qualities suggested its stability with a static margin of 8.652% of the mean aerodynamic chord (MAC) and consistent response from the pilot input. In addition, the aircraft achieved a maximum lift-to-drag ratio of 28.1; a maximum range of 4,581 nautical miles; zero-lift drag of 0.005; while meeting all the requirements of the dynamic modes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flight Simulation)
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