Date of Award
Thesis - Open Access
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering
William A. Engblom, Ph. D.
First Committee Member
Snorri Gudmundsson, M.S.
Second Committee Member
Glenn P. Greiner, M.S.
A high-altitude, long-endurance unmanned aerial airframe was designed for the innovative Dual-Aircraft Atmospheric Platform flight concept that exploits stratospheric wind velocity gradients to remain aloft indefinitely. Classical aircraft preliminary design techniques and high-fidelity tools were used to establish a baseline configuration.
Performance characteristics of numerous airfoil profiles were evaluated with two-dimensional flow software in an effort to determine the best-candidate airfoil for the unique application. Vortex-Lattice method tools were used to investigate the sensitivity of three-dimensional design parameters upon overall vehicle aerodynamic performance and determine both static and dynamic stability characteristics of the airframe. Performance capabilities of the finalized airframe are demonstrated in a flight envelope diagram with applied gust loads per the Federal Aviation Regulations. The innovative tandem-wing design exhibits exceptional performance characteristics required for the flight concept.
Scholarly Commons Citation
McKee, Eric Michael, "Novel Airframe Design for the Dual-Aircraft Atmospheric Platform Flight Concept" (2012). Dissertations and Theses. 104.