1967-02-01

Aerodynamic Design Considerations of Variable Geometry Aircraft 670880

Aircraft designs have been characterized by an increasing utilization of variable geometry features as aircraft capabilities expand into new flight regimes. The trend seems likely to continue as requirements for new aircraft become continually more demanding. The successful application of variable geometry depends on several things: the understanding of the aerodynamic principles involved, efficient structure, and whether an overall worthwhile improvementin performance, maneuverability, or flying qualities is gained; since it certainly will cost more, be less reliable, and more difficult to maintain.
The application of some existing and proposed variable geometry schemes to aircraft is discussed. The aerodynamic factors affecting low and high speed performance, maneuverability, and stability and control characteristics indicate some of the desirable and troublesome aspects of these concepts.

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