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Aeroelastic character of a National Aerospace Plane demonstrator conceptThe paper provides an analytical assessment of the flutter character of an unclassified National Aerospace Plane configuration known as the demonstrator. Linear subsonic, supersonic, and hypersonic analysis indicate that the vehicle is prone to body-freedom flutter resulting from the decrease in vibration frequency of the all-moveable wing at high flight dynamic pressures. As the wing-pivot frequency decreases, it couples with the vehicle short-period mode resulting in dynamic instability. A similar instability sometimes occurs when the pivot mode couples with the fuselage-bending mode. Also assessed, for supersonic flight conditions, are configuration variations that include relocation of the wing further aft on the lifting-body fuselage, and the addition of body flaps to the rear of the vehicle. These changes are destabilizing because they result in severe wing-pivot/fuselage-bending instabilities at dynamic pressures lower than the instabilities indicated for the original demonstrator. Finally, a two-point wing support and actuation system concept is proposed for the National Aerospace Plane, which if developed may (according to cursory analysis) enhance overall stability.
Document ID
Acquisition Source
Legacy CDMS
Document Type
Conference Paper
Spain, Charles V.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Zeiler, Thomas A.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Gibbons, Michael D.
(NASA Langley Research Center Hampton, VA, United States)
Soistmann, David L.
(Lockheed Engineering and Sciences Co. Hampton, VA, United States)
Pozefsky, Peter
(McDonnell Aircraft Co. Saint Louis, MO, United States)
Dejesus, Rafael O.
(Purdue Univ. West Lafayette, IN, United States)
Brannon, Cyprian P.
(Georgia Inst. of Technology Atlanta, United States)
Date Acquired
August 16, 2013
Publication Date
January 1, 1993
Publication Information
Publication: In: AIAA(ASME)ASCE/AHS/ASC Structures, Structural Dynamics, and Materials Conference, 34th and AIAA/ASME Adaptive Structures Forum, La Jolla, CA, Apr. 19-22, 1993, Technical Papers. Pt. 1 (A93-33876 1
Publisher: American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics
Subject Category
Spacecraft Design, Testing And Performance
Report/Patent Number
AIAA PAPER 93-1314
Accession Number
Distribution Limits

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