X-29 High AOA Flight Test Results: An Overview 931367
An extensive high angle-of-attack (AOA) flight testing program has been performed with the X-29-2 (AF 82-0049) forward swept wing research aircraft. The high AOA envelope expansion phase cleared the aircraft to fly in a broad flight regime and produced important data on the high AOA clearance process and data analysis. Lessons learned during the military utility phase on the tactical advantages and disadvantages associated with high AOA maneuvering are impacting programs such as the X-31, HARV, and F-22. Insight on the critical forebody flow-field of the X-29 at high AOA was gained using on-surface pressure measurements and off-surface flow visualization during the aerocharacterization phase. The Vortex Flow Control (VFC) experiment conducted on the X-29 successfully proved the viability of a pneumatic blowing device manipulating forebody vortices to act as an aircraft controller, an historical first. Finally, throughout the aircraft #2 flight test program, important data concerning the aircraft’s air data system, digital flight control system, vertical tail, engine, and subsystems operating in the high AOA environment were gathered. This paper is intended as a broad overview of the high AOA testing of the X - 29, with the purpose of directing the reader towards the numerous excellent references which describe the flight test program in more detail.