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  Design and Flight Testing of an ECO-Sport Aircraft C. Jouannet * , D. Lundström † , K. Amadori ‡ , P. Berry §    Linköping University, Linköping, 581 83, Sweden The presented work is centered on different concept studies for “greener” sport aircraft. The goal is to show the possibility to manufacture a sport aircraft based on different environmental friendly propulsion systems. A first theoretical part consists of creating a sizing program for studying different concepts. Then the gathered knowledge will result in the realization of two flying down-scaled demonstrators. This study was realized during a student project over a 5 month period. I.   Introduction lobal warming and environmental issues are becoming a major driver in product development and for societal stockholders, and have become key issues for aircraft transportation, as addressed by the ACARE 2020 goals. These aspects are today mainly taken into account by large aircraft manufacturer such as Airbus and Boeing, but will soon have an impact on the development of small sport aircraft as well. The sport aircraft market can be compared to the car industry, where the development is going toward increasingly environmental friendly products. Most general aviation aircraft adopt decades old combustion engines. Among all the piston powered aircraft flying in the USA, approximately 170 000, the majority have been certified for leaded fuel, leading to higher greenhouse gas production than on modern piston engines. As the environment protection is becoming a central problem, also  private pilots begin to be aware and pay attention to the topic. Their leisure activity is only responsible for a small  part of the polluting emission in the world, but they still are potential customers for a green sport aircraft. Also in Europe there is a potentially large market: G      according to AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association), there are more than 200 000 private pilots in Europe.    according to FFA (Fédération Française d’Aéronautique), there are more than 42 000 private pilots and more than 600 aero clubs in France. There are several alternative propulsion systems that can be considered. For instance, a 2-seat Dimona motor glider  powered by fuel cells was flown by Boeing, ref xx. Other similar projects have been presented by Politecnico di Torino, ref xx. Some other alternative involving fuel cells and solar panel have been presented by Lisa-Aviation, and the Italian consortium SkySpark (ref). The Solar Impulse project is an example of a solar panels driven aircraft that is designed to fly around the Globe in the coming years. The current project focused on designing a eco-friendly sport aircraft, based on different available technologies for creating a green or greener aircraft. The chosen technologies are the following:    Fuel Cells    Solar Panels    Batteries    Hybrid *  Assistant Professor, Dept of Management and Engineering,, AIAA Member. †  PhD Student, Dept of Management and Engineering,, AIAA Student Member. ‡  PhD Student, Dept of Management and Engineering,, AIAA Student Member. §  Lecturer, Dept of Management and Engineering, American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics 1 48th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting Including the New Horizons Forum and Aerospace Exposition4 - 7 January 2010, Orlando, Florida AIAA 2010-1206 Copyright © 2010 by Copyright© 2010 by Christopher Jouannet. Published by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Inc., with permission.  These different technologies can be combined in order to create a propulsion system. A.   Educational challenges Over the years there has been a dramatic reduction in ongoing aircraft projects. Today’s aircraft design engineers are lucky if they will be involved in one or two complete projects during their entire careers. This is in sharp contrast to the “golden age”, when an engineer was likely to be part of several projects during his career, see Table 1. Table 1. Design career length versus military aircraft design by decade (adapted from Scott 9 ) This situation creates an issue regarding the education of aircraft design engineers. When they start their  professional life they will be assigned to an ongoing project and they may be involved in that for a long time before starting on a new project. The teaching approach as proposed by Linköping University is to allow future aircraft engineers to participate in a complete aircraft design project, from requirements to flight testing, as a preparation for their very first steps into industry. The other major challenge in aerospace education is changing demands from the industry regarding the type of knowledge the yet to be engineers should be educated for. Most of university aerospace educations are focused on developing students analytical skills and not as much to develop the synthesis capabilities nor the innovative  perspective needed for aircraft design. Recent changes in educational perspective, such as the CDIO initiative 10 , initiated by the Aerospace institute at MIT and tree Swedish universities, Linköping University being one among them, try to apply a more synthetical view on engineering education, by introducing small practical assignments into the regular courses. This approach is adopted in a larger scale for the aircraft design education at Linköping University, and was adopted before the creation of the CDIO initiative. In the same spirit Young 5  argued in favour to design projects in engineers’ education.  Nowadays team-work is increasingly important. Being able to present results and ideas in a selling manner is also an important skill, as well as to be able to convert ideas into something practical and useful. This is something which Universities seldom care much about, but that is certainly important, i.e. to bridge the cliff between the students mostly theoretical life into the more practical life in industry. One of the most important issues is to be able to gain a holistic viewpoint from the very start in working life, i.e. to possess a kind of “helicopter view” with regard to the  product or project one is involved in. One way of preparing for that insight is to carry out projects like the aircraft design project at Linköping University. II.   Goals The goal of this project is to study the feasibility of a “green sport aircraft”. The project consists of two parts: one full-scale study and the second part dedicated to the realisation of a scaled demonstrator. The main goals for the  project are defined by the following requirements: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics 2     Realisation of a sizing program for sport aircrafts    Study and comparison of different configurations    CAD representation of the different configuration    Realisation of two flying demonstrators. This was set has being the minimum requirement for the project course. Based on these requirements, the work was divided into different packages assigned to smaller groups of students that should cooperate on common tasks and study the different configuration. III.   Sizing program A.   Manufacturing Methods The students have been provided with an existing sizing program that was previously developed at Linköping University. Their task has been to complement it with the following modules:    Propeller model    Electrical engine model    Gas engine model    Hybrid engine model    Fuel cell propulsion model    Complement existing weight module    Battery model    Solar propulsion model    Complement existing cost model    Complement existing sizing model The sizing program should refer to a piston engine sport aircraft, where different type of “green” propulsion alternatives should be included in order to determine their performances. The sizing program and baseline configuration required to be calibrated on the requirements and specification for the piston engine baseline. The sizing program also allows trade-off studies in form of “how much greener” could the aircraft be if the performance are reduced by a given percentage. Aerodynamic calculation have been carried out with lifting-line theory based tools, such as Tornado. American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics 3    Figure 1. Scheme of the sizing tool   IV.   Full Scale design solution In order to compare what could be achived with alternative propulsion systems, the Lancair Legacy was chosen to  be a baseline as a representative high performance sport airplane. The Legacy was also used for benchmarking the sizing program and validate the performance estimation and the weight estimation. Figure 2. The baseline aircraft chosen for the project: the Lancair Legacy The work conceptual design work was reduced to 4 different versions to be studied. Any kind of trade off from the  base line was permitted, the goal being to produce a configuration having the less compromise from the base line. The goal is to achieve performances as close as possible to the baseline. Some key parameters were set to be driving the design; those parameters were decided to be:    Range    Endurance    Cruise speed Other parameters such as respecting FAR-23 rules were also imposed. Other similitude with the Lancair Legacy was up to each group to decide. In order to reduced the number of propulsion combination the following were chose to  be studied: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics 4


Jul 23, 2017
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