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About the Project

Simulating Aircraft Stability And Control Characteristics for Use in Conceptual Design

Present trends in aircraft design towards augmented-stability and expanded flight envelopes call for an accurate description of the non-linear flight-dynamic behaviour of the aircraft in order to properly design the Flight Control System (FCS). Hence the need to increase the knowledge about stability and control (S&C) as early as possible in the aircraft development process in order to be "First-Time-Right"; with the FCS design architecture.

FCS design usually starts near the end of the conceptual design phase when the configuration has been tentatively frozen and experimental data for predicted aerodynamic characteristics are available. Up to 80% of the life-cycle cost of an aircraft is incurred during the conceptual design phase so mistakes must be avoided. Today prediction errors related to S&C result in costly fly-and-try fixes, sometimes involving loss of proto-type aircraft and crew.

To meet these challenges SimSAC develops along two major axes:

  1. creation and implementation of a simulation environment, CEASIOM, for conceptual design sizing and optimisation suitably knitted for low-to-high-fidelity S&C analysis; and
  2. an improved pragmatic mix of numerical tools benchmarked against experimental data

More specifically, the SimSAC project contains 4 primary work elements:

  • Development and subsequent linking of a series of disparate expert software modules into a computerised system (CEASIOM) that generates dependent parameter results for purposes of assessing S&C
  • Thorough benchmarking of the developed expert software tools
  • Application of CEASIOM to a select number of aircraft design problems
  • Wind-tunnel verification of a CEASIOM-designed aircraft

The SimSAC project started the 1st of November 2006 and is a 36-month effort.

Find out more about the project in the flyer, and about its structure.

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