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Journal Article

ℒ1 Adaptive Flutter Suppression Control Strategy for Highly Flexible Structure

2013-09-17
2013-01-2263
The aim of this work is to apply an innovative adaptive ℒ1 techniques to control flutter phenomena affecting highly flexible wings and to evaluate the efficiency of this control algorithm and architecture by performing the following tasks: i) adaptation and analysis of an existing simplified nonlinear plunging/pitching 2D aeroelastic model accounting for structural nonlinearities and a quasi-steady aerodynamics capable of describing flutter and post-flutter limit cycle oscillations, ii) implement the ℒ1 adaptive control on the developed aeroelastic system to perform initial control testing and evaluate the sensitivity to system parameters, and iii) perform model validation and calibration by comparing the performance of the proposed control strategy with an adaptive back-stepping algorithm. The effectiveness and robustness of the ℒ1 adaptive control in flutter and post-flutter suppression is demonstrated.
Journal Article

Theoretical and Experimental Flutter Predictions in High Aspect Ratio Composite Wings

2011-10-18
2011-01-2722
Next generation of composite civil aircrafts and unconventional configurations, such as High Altitude Long Endurance HALE-UAV, exhibit aeroelastic instabilities quite different from their rigid counterparts. Consequently, one has to deal with phenomena not usually considered in classical aircraft design. Alternative design criteria are needed in order to maintain the safety levels imposed by the regulations and required for certification. The A2-Net-Team project aims to build a multi-disciplinary network of researchers with complementary expertise to develop analytical methods used for a better understanding and assessment of the factors contributing to the occurrence of critical aeroservoelastic instabilities. Along with modeling and numerical investigations a test article will also provide the opportunity to modify and calibrate theoretical models, to highlight and explore their limits, to recommend the necessary modifications and future pertinent investigations.
Technical Paper

The Influence of Supersonic Stream on the Dependence "Amplitude-Frequency" of Nonlinear Vibrations of Flexible Plate

2013-09-17
2013-01-2160
The stability analysis of plates and shells in high speed flow deals with the determination of the flutter instability boundary. A linear analysis is made using the basic principles of the theory of aero-elasticity of isotropic bodies, the theories of flexible plates, the stability equations and associated boundary conditions obtained through a linear formulation. Herein, the nonlinear stability of flexible plate immersed in a high speed gas flow is considered. The model takes into account quadratic and cubic aerodynamic nonlinearities as well as cubic geometric nonlinearities. It is shown that the inclusion of quadratic aerodynamic nonlinear components can lead to the appearance of “amplitude-frequency” phenomena in both the pre-critical as well as in the post-critical flow speed regimes. The influence of the free stream flow speed on the “amplitude-frequency” dependence phenomena is also presented.
Technical Paper

Structural and Aerodynamics Analysis on Different Architectures for the Elettra Twin Flyer Prototype

2009-11-10
2009-01-3128
This paper deals with the design and development of an innovative airship concept which is remotely-controlled and intended to be used for monitoring, surveillance, exploration and reconnaissance missions. Two potential solutions have been analyzed: the first consists of a double-hull configuration, characterized by the presence of a primary support structure connected by appropriated bindings to a couple of twin inflatable hulls. The second architecture is a soap-shaped exoskeleton configuration which features a single inflated section, incorporating two separate elements held internally by a system of ribs. The aim of this study is to analyze and compare the two configurations, to determine the most appropriate solution in terms of performance, cost and maneuvering capabilities
Technical Paper

Real-Time Predictive Modeling of Combustion and NOx Formation in Diesel Engines Under Transient Conditions

2012-04-16
2012-01-0899
The present work has the aim of developing a fast approach for the predictive calculation of in-cylinder combustion temperatures and NOx formation in diesel engines, under steady state and transient conditions. The model has been tested on a PC, and found to require very little computational time, thus suggesting it could be implemented in the ECU (Engine Control Unit) of engines for model-based control tasks. The method starts with the low-throughput predictive combustion model that was previously developed by the authors, which allows the predictive estimation of the heat-release rate and of the in-cylinder pressure trace to be made on the basis of the injection parameters and of a few quantities measured by the ECU, such as the intake manifold pressure and temperature.
Technical Paper

Optimization of a Light Aircraft Spark-Ignition Engine

2006-08-30
2006-01-2420
The aim of this study was to find a convenient set-up for an innovative engine dedicated to light aircraft through a numerical one-dimensional simulation. Six different engine layouts were analyzed in order to find the highest power/weight ratio and the least voluminous configuration. The first was a four cylinder, four stroke, horizontally opposed, naturally aspirated, water cooled engine with 16 valves that delivered 75 kW (∼100 bhp) at 2400 rpm for an estimated weight of 65 kg. A gearbox was also used in the naturally aspirated model to decrease the displacement, the weight and the overall dimensions. The other solutions involved these two engines in a turbocharged layout in order to gain a further downsizing. The supercharging was obtained through a centrifugal compressor driven by an exhaust-gas driven turbine, which also allows the power to be restored at cruising altitude.
Technical Paper

Nonlinear Slender Beam-Wise Schemes for Structural Behavior of Flexible UAS Wings

2015-09-15
2015-01-2462
The innovative highly flexible wings made of extremely light structures, yet still capable of carrying a considerable amount of non- structural weights, requires significant effort in structural simulations. The complexity involved in such design demands for simplified mathematical tools based on appropriate nonlinear structural schemes combined with reduced order models capable of predicting accurately their aero-structural behaviour. The model presented in this paper is based on a consistent nonlinear beam-wise scheme, capable of simulating the unconventional aeroelastic behaviour of flexible composite wings. The partial differential equations describing the wing dynamics are expanded up to the third order and can be used to explore the effect of static deflection imposed by external trim, the effect of gust loads and the one of nonlinear aerodynamic stall.
Technical Paper

Multifunctional System for Trace Gas Contaminants Removal

2009-07-12
2009-01-2525
The Atmospheric Revitalization System (ARS) provides carbon dioxide removal, trace contaminant control, and gas constituent analysis. In this field, the interest of RecycLAB [5], the TAS-I Advanced Live Support Research & Development laboratory is directed to trace gas contaminants removal and monitoring. During manned space mission, the decontamination of cabin or rack air after contingency events such as fire or pyrolysis is a priority for the crew safety. In this paper, basic zeolites, obtained by impregnation of common zeolites with a basic oxide, are used to remove acid gas contaminants from air stream. A multi-functional system, able to accommodate reactors of different shape, characteristics and set-up, is used at this purpose. This breadboard, called ZEUS (Zeolites for an Environmental-control Unit in Space), is made of AISI 316L stainless steel and consists of a closed loop, in which the inner volume is completely isolated from the external environment.
Technical Paper

Multi-objective Optimization of a Multifunctional Structure through a MOGA and SOM based Methodology

2013-09-17
2013-01-2207
A Multi-Objective Optimization (MOO) problem concerning the thermal control problem of Multifunctional Structures (MFSs) is here addressed. In particular the use of Multi-Objective algorithms from an optimization tool and Self-Organizing Maps (SOM) is proposed for the identification of the optimal topological distribution of the heating components for a multifunctional test panel, the Advanced Bread Board (ABB). MFSs are components that conduct many functions within a single piece of hardware, shading the clearly defined boundaries that identify traditional subsystems. Generally speaking, MFSs have already proved to be a disrupting technology, especially in aeronautics and space application fields. The case study exploited in this paper refers to a demonstrator breadboard called ABB. ABB belongs to a particular subset of an extensive family of MFS, that is, of thermo-structural panels with distributed electronics and a health monitoring network.
Technical Paper

Improved Multibody Model of Flexible Wing

2013-09-17
2013-01-2265
In the development of High Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) UAVs and their control the flexibility of the wing must be taken into account. The wing of this type of UAVs, usually made of highly flexible composite materials, has high aspect ratio with significant bending-torsional deformation during flight. The NASA Helios, as an example, has tragically shown that wing deformation coupled with control and power operation can cause serious problem in flight, instability can suddenly occur and can be quite difficult to foresee. In this paper the mathematical description of a flexible wing multibody model is presented. It is suitable to simulate the effect of both structural flexibility and flight dynamics and maneuvering on the wing deformation, and can be used to help developing control strategies for air vehicles with highly deformable wings.
Technical Paper

Ground Testing of the ETF Unmanned Airship Technology Demonstrator

2011-10-18
2011-01-2589
This paper deals with the ground testing of the technological demonstrator of the innovative remotely controlled ETF airship1. The testing activities are intended to validate the flight control system of the ETF, which is based on the thrust vectoring technology and represents one of the major innovations of the ETF design, together with the airship architecture. A research team of the Aeronautical and Space Department of the Polytechnic of Turin, in collaboration with Nautilus, a small Italian private company, has been working since a few years on the ETF (Elettra Twin Flyers). This airship is remotely-piloted, with high maneuverability capabilities and good operative features also in adverse atmospheric conditions2. The Nautilus new concept airship features architecture and appropriate command system, which should enable the vehicle to maneuver in forward, backward and sideward flight and hovering with any heading, both in normal and severe wind conditions.
Technical Paper

Fuel Consumption Measurement in I.C. Reciprocating Engines Utilizing Manifold Pressure and Engine RPM

2002-04-16
2002-01-1511
An electronic instrument for the measurement of fuel consumption in reciprocating internal combustion engines for light aircraft has been designed, manufactured and tested. The operating principle of the measuring device is based on the simple, theoretically supported and experimentally verified observation that the fuel mass flow rate is almost exactly proportional to the product of the intake manifold air pressure “pc” and the engine revolution speed “n”. Therefore, only two sensors are needed, and no fuel pipe cutting is required for installation and operation. This feature represents a major point in favor of simplicity, reliability and safety. The aim of the instrument is to provide a fuel consumption indication which can be used during cruising. The instrument is not intended as a replacement for the usual on-board fuel level gauge, but can be used to integrate the flight information with the overall and instantaneous fuel consumption data.
Technical Paper

FMS and AFCS Interface for 4D Trajectory Operations

2015-09-15
2015-01-2458
The future revolution of the air traffic system imposes the development of a new class of Flight Management Systems (FMS), capable of providing the aircraft with real-time reference flight parameters, necessary to fly the aircraft through a predefined sequence of waypoints, while minimizing fuel consumption, noise and pollution emissions. The main goal is to guarantee safety operations while reducing the aircraft environmental impact, according to the main international research programs. This policy is expected to affect also the Unmanned Aerial Systems (UASs), as soon as they will be allowed to fly beyond the restricted portions of the aerospace where they are currently confined. In the future, in fact, UASs are expected to fly within the whole civilian airspace, under the same requirements deriving from the adoption of the Performance Based Navigation (PBN).
Technical Paper

Experimental Investigation on a 3D Wing Section Hosting Multiple SJAs for Stall Control Purpose

2015-09-15
2015-01-2453
Flow control over aerodynamic shapes in order to achieve performance enhancements has been a lively research area for last two decades. Synthetic Jet Actuators (SJAs) are devices able to interact actively with the flow around their hosting structure by providing ejection and suction of fluid from the enclosed cavity containing a piezo-electric oscillating membrane through dedicated orifices. The research presented in this paper concerns the implementation of zero-net-mass-flux SJAs airflow control system on a NACA0015, low aspect ratio wing section prototype. Two arrays with each 10 custom-made SJAs, installed at 10% and 65% of the chord length, make up the actuation system. The sensing system consists of eleven acoustic pressure transducers distributed in the wing upper surface and on the flap, an accelerometer placed in proximity of the wing c.g. and a six-axis force balance for integral load measurement.
Technical Paper

Energy Storage: Regenerative Fuel Cell Systems for Space Exploration

2011-10-18
2011-01-2624
Future exploration missions, including human missions to the Moon and Mars, are expected to have increasingly demanding operational requirements. Generating electrical power, and also maintaining a specific thermal environment, are both critical capabilities for any mission. In the case of exploration, both a wide range of mission types (robotic, human, ISRU etc.) and a variety of environments exist: from interplanetary space, to the shadow of a lunar crater, to the attenuated and red-shifted lighting on the Martian surface, power requirements must be met. This objective could be met with different technologies. The choice is dictated by the operating conditions and the different types of mission. TAS-I is historically mainly involved in missions related to the space exploration with the presence of astronauts. A typical example is the exploration of the Moon with the installation on the Moon surface of a base inclusive of pressurized habitats and rovers.
Technical Paper

Efficient Procedure for Robust Optimal Design of Aerospace Laminated Structures

2017-09-19
2017-01-2058
Innovative aircraft design studies have noted that uncertainty effects could become significant and greatly emphasized during the conceptual design phases due to the scarcity of information about the new aero-structure being designed. The introduction of these effects in design methodologies are strongly recommended in order to perform a consistent evaluation of structural integrity. The benefit to run a Robust Optimization is the opportunity to take into account uncertainties inside the optimization process obtaining a set of robust solutions. A major drawback of performing Robust Multi-Objective Optimization is the computational time required. The proposed research focus on the reduction of the computational time using mathematic and computational techniques. In the paper, a generalized approach to operate a Robust Multi-Objective Optimization (RMOO) for Aerospace structure using MSC software Patran/Nastran to evaluate the Objectives Function, is proposed.
Technical Paper

Application of Structural Topology Optimization to Couple Thin-Walled Stiffened Box-Beams

2017-09-19
2017-01-2059
Future generations of civil aircrafts and unconventional unmanned configurations demand for innovative structural concepts to improve the structural performance, and thus reduce the structural weight, but also to allow possible material couplings to be made. Static and dynamic aeroelastic stability can be altered by these couplings. It is therefore necessary to use an accurate and computationally efficient beam model during the preliminary design phase. A stiffened box, made of isotropic material, but with the stiffeners oriented so that they originate the expected bending/torsion coupling, is considered in the present work. The overall equivalent bending, torsional and coupled stiffness is derived by means of homogenization of the shell skin and of the stiffener plate stiffness. A new equivalent homogeneous orthotropic material is determined and introduced into the equivalent plate configuration.
Technical Paper

Aeroelastic Behaviour of Flexible Wings Carrying Distributed Electric Propulsion Systems

2017-09-19
2017-01-2061
An accurate aeroelastic assessment of powered HALE aircraft is of paramount importance considering that their behaviour contrasts the one of conventional aircraft mainly due to the use of high aspect-ratio wings with distributed propulsion systems. This particular configuration shows strong dependency of the wing natural frequencies to the propulsion distribution and operating conditions. Numerical and experimental investigations are carried out to better understand the behaviour of flexible wings, focusing on the effect of distributed electric propulsion systems. Several configurations are investigated, including a single propulsion system using an engine pod (a weight with embedded electric motor, a propeller, and the wing-attached structure) installed at selected spanwise positions, and configurations with two and three propellers.
Journal Article

A Reduced Order Model for the Aeroelastic Analysis of Flexible Wings

2013-09-17
2013-01-2158
The aeroelastic design of highly flexible wings, made of extremely light structures yet still capable of carrying a considerable amount of non-structural weights, requires significant effort. The complexity involved in such design demands for simplified mathematical tools based on appropriate reduced order models capable of predicting the accurate aeroelastic behaviour. The model presented in this paper is based on a consistent nonlinear beam model, capable of simulating the unconventional aeroelastic behaviour of flexible composite wings. The partial differential equations describing the wing dynamics are reduced to a dimensionless form in terms of three ordinary differential equations using a discretization technique, along with Galerkin's method. Within this approach the nonlinear structural model an unsteady indicial based aerodynamic model with dynamic stall are coupled.
Technical Paper

A Rack-like Facility Prototype for Ground Demonstration of a LSS Based on Plants

2009-07-12
2009-01-2582
In the frame of the space food production research activities conducted in the Thales Alenia Space Italia (TAS-I) Advanced Life Support Research and Development laboratory (RecycLAB, [6]), and with the contribution of a degree thesis developed in collaboration with the Politecnico of Torino, a rack-like facility for ground research on Life Support Systems based on Plants has been designed, developed, integrated, verified and tested in TAS-I. The new facility, called EDEN EPISODE 2, is a significant evolution of a previous TAS-I project (EDEN EPISODE 1) and takes benefit from other lower size TAS-I demonstrators (CUBE). It aims at realizing a completely closed and controlled environment for crop production, while a mobile lighting panel allows to maximize the delivered light in each phase of the plant life cycle. Hydroponic and aeroponic techniques have been implemented in the project for nutrient delivery to the plant roots.
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