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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2014
AE172: Introduction to Aircraft
Performance
Asst. Prof. Dr. Ali Trker Kutay
Middle East Technical University
Department of Aerospace Engineering

Introduction

Instructor

Asst. Prof. Dr. A. Trker Kutay

Students

METU Aerospace Engineering Students

BSc, METU, Aeronautical Engineering, 1996


MSc, METU, Aeronautical Engineering, 1999
PhD, Georgia Tech, Aerospace Engineering, 2005

In top 10,000 among over more than 1 million people

Course

AE172: Introduction Aircraft Performance


We learn how aircrafts fly!

http://www.ae.metu.edu.tr/~ae172/

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 2

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Teaching Philosophy

I will present the materials in a way that is


easiest to understand for MYSELF
Everybody has a different way of learning
Student participation is very important
Majority of learning takes place outside the
classroom

Always look for ways to better understand the


materials
Share your knowledge with the class. You cannot
lose knowledge by sharing, you can only gain more!

http://www.ae.metu.edu.tr/~ae172/

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 3

Online Sources

Course materials from other universities

MIT Open Courseware (http://ocw.mit.edu)

http://ocw.mit.edu/courses/physics/8-01-physics-i-classical-mechanics-fall1999/

Other Online Sources

NASA Aerodynamics Index


(http://www.grc.nasa.gov/WWW/K-12/airplane/short.html)
Other sources on basic physics and aerodynamics

http://www.ae.metu.edu.tr/~ae172/

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 4

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

METU Online

Log on to https://online.metu.edu.tr/

In your profile enter an e-mail address you check at least daily!

http://www.ae.metu.edu.tr/~ae172/

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 5

METU Online

When I post something on METU Online I will assume that the


entire class will know about it in 24 hours.
On METU Online I will post

Lecture notes
Supplementary materials (reading materials, pictures, videos, etc.)
related to course topics
Other interesting things which I believe will make you better
engineers
Homework assignments
Important announcements (homework extensions, quizzes, )

I will expect you to

Ask your questions about the lectures, homework, etc.


Post your comments about the lectures, homework, etc.
Discuss course (or engineering) related topics
Share your experiences and opinions about the course (engineering)

http://www.ae.metu.edu.tr/~ae172/

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 6

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

AE Prerequisite Chain

http://www.ae.metu.edu.tr/~ae172/

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 7

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013
AE172: Introduction to Aircraft
Performance
Asst. Prof. Dr. Ali Trker Kutay
Middle East Technical University
Department of Aerospace Engineering

Introduction to Aircraft Performance

Aircraft (A/C): (from Wikipedia)

Aircraft are vehicles which are able to fly by being


supported by the air. An aircraft counters the force
of gravity by using either static lift or by using the
dynamic lift of an airfoil, or in a few cases the
downward thrust from jet engines.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 2

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Performance

Measuring how well an A/C flies

How fast can it fly?


What is the maximum altitude it can fly at? (ceiling)
How far can it go? (range)
How long can it stay in the air? (endurance)
How fast can it climb to the cruising altitude?
How fast can it descend?
How quickly can it stop on the ground?
How quickly can it take off?
What is the minimum radius of turn?
What is the minimum time of turn?
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 3

Flight Mechanics

Flight is the process by which an object


moves through the air by generating the
necessary forces.
Classical mechanics is concerned with the
set of physical laws mathematically
describing the motions of bodies under the
action of a system of forces.
Flight mechanics is the study of the forces
that act on an aircraft in flight, and the way
the aircraft responds to those forces.
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Newtons Laws of Motion

First law: Every body remains in a state of


rest or uniform motion (constant velocity)
unless it is acted upon by an external
unbalanced force.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 5

Newtons Laws of Motion

Second law: A body of mass m subject to a


net force F undergoes an acceleration a that
has the same direction as the force and a
magnitude that is directly proportional to the
force and inversely proportional to the mass:
F ma m

dv
d 2x
m 2
dt
dt

m is assumed to be constant

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Newtons Laws of Motion

Third law: The mutual forces of action and


reaction between two bodies are equal,
opposite and collinear. This means that
whenever a first body exerts a force F on a
second body, the second body exerts a force
F on the first body. F and F are equal in
magnitude and opposite in direction.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 7

Aircraft

Aircraft (A/C): (from Wikipedia)

Aircraft are vehicles which are able to fly by being


supported by the air. An aircraft counters the force
of gravity by using either static lift or by using the
dynamic lift of an airfoil, or in a few cases the
downward thrust from jet engines.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Static Lift

Static (steady, no motion)

The necessary force to balance gravity can be


created when the air around the aircraft is static

Buoyancy

In physics, buoyancy is an
upward acting force exerted
by a fluid, that opposes an
object's weight. If the object
is either less dense than the
liquid or is shaped
appropriately (as in a boat),
the force can keep the
object afloat.
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 9

Lighter Than Air (LTA) Vehicles


A large container filled with a substance that is Lighter than
Air (LTA) (has a density that is lower than that of air) to make
the whole craft lighter than air:
Hot air
Neon
Water vapor
Ammonia
Methane
Hydrogen
Helium

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Balloon

The first recorded manned flight was


made in a hot air balloon built by the
Montgolfier brothers on November 21,
1783. The flight started in Paris and
reached a height of 500 feet or so and
covered about 5 miles in 25 minutes.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 11

LTA Aircraft
Unpowered

Powered

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Hot Air Balloons

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Dynamic Lift

Dynamic (in motion)

The necessary force to balance gravity is created


by the motion of the air around the aircraft

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Air Pressure

A gas is composed of a large number of


molecules that are very small relative to the
distance between molecules. The molecules of a
gas are in constant, random motion and
frequently collide with each other and with the
walls of any container.
As the gas molecules collide with the walls of a
container the molecules impart momentum to
the walls, producing a force perpendicular to the
wall. The sum of the forces of all the molecules
striking the wall divided by the area of the wall is
defined to be the pressure.
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 15

Creation of Aerodynamic Forces

A fluid flowing past the surface of a body


exerts a surface force on it.

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Air Flows Faster on the Upper


Surface

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Fixed Wing Aircraft

Sufficient forward speed of the aircraft is


required to create sufficient lift force over
fixed wings.

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Rotary Wing Aircraft (Rotorcraft)

Wings are rotated to have the necessary air


flow around them without having to move the
aircraft forward.

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Downward Thrust From Jet Engines

Jet thrust from the engine is directed


downwards to create the vertical force to
balance the weight.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2010
AE172: Introduction to Aircraft
Performance
Elements of an Aircraft
Asst. Prof. Dr. Ali Trker Kutay
Middle East Technical University
Department of Aerospace Engineering

Flight Mechanics

Control motion of an aircraft in 3D space

Position (3 translational states)


Orientation (3 rotational states)

} 6 Degrees of Freedom (6DOF)

Yaw

Pitch

x
Roll

z
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Conventional Aircraft

Conventional means typical, regular,


traditional, normal, etc.

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Unconventional Aircraft
V-22 Osprey

X-29
Fanwing

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Elements of an Aircraft

Fuselage: or body of the airplane, is a long hollow tube which holds all the pieces of
an airplane together.
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Fuselage

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Fuselage (contd)

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Elements of an Aircraft

Cockpit: is a compartment in which


the pilot of an airplane sits.

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Cockpit

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Elements of an Aircraft
Pylon
Nacelle

Jet engine

Jet Engine: Develops thrust by ejecting a jet, especially a jet of


gaseous combustion products.
Nacelle:
A separate streamlined enclosure on an aircraft housing
an engine.
Pylon:
An assembly attached to an airplane, usually under the
wing, to hold an engine, fuel tank, weapon, etc.
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 10

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Elements of an Aircraft

Wings

Wing: is a surface used to produce lift for flight through the air.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 11

Wing
Wing area (S)

Leading edge

ct

cr

cr
ct

Aspect Ratio AR

b2
S

Taper Ratio

ct
cr

ct

cr

c
Trailing edge

wingspan

b
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Wing

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Elements of an Aircraft
Rudder
Vertical stabilizer
Vertical stabilizer: is a fixed wing section
whose job is to provide stability for the
aircraft, to keep it flying straight. The
vertical stabilizer prevents side-toside, or yawing, motion of the aircraft
nose.
Rudder: is the small moving section at
the rear of the stabilizer that is
attached to the fixed sections by
hinges. Because the rudder moves, it
varies the amount of force generated
by the tail surface and is used to
generate and control the yawing
motion of the aircraft.
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 14

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Vertical Stabilizer

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Rudder

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Rudder Control

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Elements of an Aircraft
Horizontal stabilizer: is a fixed wing
section whose job is to provide
stability for the aircraft, to keep it
flying straight. The horizontal
stabilizer prevents up-and-down, or
pitching, motion of the aircraft.
Elevator: is the small moving section at
the rear of the stabilizer that is
attached to the fixed sections by
hinges. It is used to generate and
control the pitching motion of the
aircraft. There is an elevator attached
to each side of the fuselage. The
elevators work in pairs; when the right
elevator goes up, the left elevator also
goes up.
Horizontal stabilizer
Elevator
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 18

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Horizontal Stabilizer

Canard: short winglike control surface


projecting from the fuselage of an
aircraft, such as a space shuttle,
mounted forward of the main wing and
serving as a horizontal stabilizer.
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Elevator

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Aileron

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2010
AE172: Introduction to Aircraft
Performance
Elements of an Aircraft
Asst. Prof. Dr. Ali Trker Kutay
Middle East Technical University
Department of Aerospace Engineering

Flight Mechanics

Control motion of an aircraft in 3D space

Position (3 translational states)


Orientation (3 rotational states)

} 6 Degrees of Freedom (6DOF)

Yaw

Pitch

x
Roll

z
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 2

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Dynamic Lift

Forward speed of the aircraft is necessary for


aerodynamic forces to develop.
L, D V 2

V1 L1

aV1 a 2 L1

For typical airliners (passenger airplanes)

Cruise speed: ~ 900 km / h


Landing speed: 300 km / h
Lift while landing

Lift during cruise


9
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 3

High Lift Devices

The amount of lift generated by a wing


depends on the shape of the airfoil, the
wing area, and the aircraft velocity.
During takeoff and landing the airplane's
velocity is relatively low. To keep the lift
high, airplane designers try to increase
the wing area and change the airfoil
shape by putting some moving parts on
the wings' leading and trailing edges. The
part on the trailing edge is called a flap.

Flaps

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 4

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Elements of an Aircraft

The part on the leading edge for


increasing lift is called a slat.

Slats

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 5

Flaps and Slats

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Elements of an Aircraft

Spoilers: are small, hinged plates on the top portion of wings intended to reduce lift
in an aircraft. Spoilers can be used to slow an aircraft, or to make an aircraft
descend, if they are deployed on both wings. Spoilers can also be used to
generate a rolling motion for an aircraft, if they are deployed on only one wing.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 7

Spoiler

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Elements of an Aircraft

Landing gear: is the structure (usually wheels, but sometimes skids, floats or
other elements) that supports an aircraft on the ground and
allows it to taxi, takeoff and land.
Taxiing:
refers to the movement of an aircraft on the ground, under its own
power
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 9

Aircraft Instruments

Traditional Cockpit

Uses mechanical gauges to display information


Difficult to maintain and operate (a flight engineer
is required for large aircrafts)

Glass Cockpit

Uses electronic instrument displays


Simpler to maintain and operate

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 10

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Traditional Cockpits

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Traditional Cockpits (contd)

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Glass Cockpits

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Glass Cockpits (contd)

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Flight Instruments
Altimeter: The altimeter
shows the aircraft's height
(usually in feet or meters)
above some reference
level (usually sea-level) by
measuring the local air
pressure. It is adjustable
for local barometric
pressure (referred to sea
level) which must be set
correctly to obtain accurate
altitude readings

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 15

Flight Instruments
Artificial horizon: shows the
aircraft's attitude relative to
the horizon. From this the
pilot can tell whether the
wings are level and if the
aircraft nose is pointing
above or below the
horizon. This is a primary
instrument for instrument
flight and is also useful in
conditions of poor visibility.

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Flight Instruments
Airspeed indicator: shows
the aircraft's speed (usually
in knots) relative to the
surrounding air. It works by
measuring the ram-air
pressure in the aircraft's
pitot tube. The indicated
airspeed must be corrected
for air density (which varies
with altitude, temperature
and humidity) in order to
obtain the true airspeed,
and for wind conditions in
order to obtain the speed
over the ground.
Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 17

Flight Instruments
Magnetic compass: The
compass shows the
aircraft's heading relative to
magnetic north. While
reliable in steady level
flight it can give confusing
indications when turning,
climbing, descending, or
accelerating due to the
inclination of the earth's
magnetic field.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 18

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Flight Instruments
Heading indicator: displays
the aircraft's heading with
respect to geographical
north. Principle of
operation is a spinning
gyroscope, and is therefore
subject to drift errors
(called precession) which
must be periodically
corrected by calibrating the
instrument to the magnetic
compass.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 19

Flight Instruments
Turn coordinator: displays
the aircraft's heading with
respect to geographical
north. Principle of
operation is a spinning
gyroscope, and is therefore
subject to drift errors
(called precession) which
must be periodically
corrected by calibrating the
instrument to the magnetic
compass.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 20

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Flight Instruments
Vertical speed indicator
(VSI) (variometer):
Senses changing air
pressure, and displays that
information to the pilot as a
rate of climb or descent in
feet per minute, meters per
second or knots

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 21

T Arrangement

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Flight Instruments

Course deviation indicator:


used in aircraft navigation
to determine an aircraft's
lateral position in relation to
a track. If the location of
the aircraft is to the left of
course, the needle deflects
to the right, and vice versa.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 23

Glass Cockpits

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Head-up Display
Head-up display: is any
transparent display that
presents data without
requiring the user to look
away from his or her usual
viewpoint. Typically displays
airspeed, altitude, a horizon
line, heading, turn/bank and
slip/skid indicators.

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay 25

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Notes_2014.02.28.pdf page 1 of 4

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

At any instant millions of molecules hit the surface and apply a force on the surface.
The sum of all these forces form the pressure force.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

If the air is steady (no air flow) a pressure transducer will measure the
same pressure at every orientation. If there is an air flow, then the
transducer measures a different pressure depending on its orientation
with respect to the flow.

Suppose that there is a flow with speed V0. This means every
particle has its random velocity plus the velocity of the flow.

This sensor only gets hit due to the random motion of


the molecules, and not due to air flow. That means it
only measures the static pressure, since it doesn't get
hit by more particles due to air flow.

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This sensor gets hit


due to the random
motion of the
molecules AND due to
air flow. There are
more collisions and the
pressure is higher.
This measues the total
pressure, static
pressure (pressure of
the air when there is
no flow) plus the
additional pressure
due to air flow.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In such a case the transducers placed perpendicularly to the flow


direction will get hit by more particles compared to the transducers
placed in parallel. Transducers placed perpendiculary to the flow
measure the total pressure. When there is no flow total pressure is
equal to the static pressure. Total pressure increases as the speed of
the flow increaes. By comparing the total and static pressure
measurements you can estimate the speed of the flow. This is how
an aircraft's speed is measured in a pitot-static tube.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

To measure the speed you need to know the freestream static


pressure. To get the best static pressure measurement the sensor
should be placed in a location where it is least affected from the
airflow.
Sensors placed on airfoil surface will measure the
local static pressure, which will be significantly
different than the freestream static pressure.

Camber changes along the chord line, it is a function of x.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Just like camber, thickness of an airfoil also usually changes along the chord, it is also a function of x.
If you know the thickness and camber distributions you can draw the airfoil.

Flow close to the aircraft is not uniform. Magnitude and direction of the flow velocity changes around the
aircraft. Flow that is sufficiently far away from the aircraft is uniform (assuming that there are no winds) and
V_infinity represents the magnitude of the speed in that region. That is why the infinity symbol is used to
represent it. Note that in reality if there are no winds the air is steady and the aircraft moves through it.
V_infinity represents velocity of the air with respect to the aircraft (velocity of the air with respect to ground is
zero) and it is same as the velocity vector of the aircraft (with respect to ground), but in the opposite direction.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Pressure difference occured due to flow (with respect to the no flow case) is the difference between the green
distribution and the blue distribution. This can be found by overlaying the green distribution on the blue one and then
subtracting the blue distribution from the green one. To show this graphically you can draw arrows from the green
pressure levels to the blue ones as shown below.
Here green arrows are shorter than the
blue arrows, meaning the pressure when
there is flow is less than the pressure
when there is no flow (freestream
pressure).

Here green arrows are longer than the blue


arrows, meaning the pressure when there is
flow is greater than the pressure when there
is no flow (freestream pressure).

The red pressure distribution is simply the blue


distribution subtracted from the green distribution.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

The blue curve represents pressure distribution when there is no flow (pressure is the same at every point on
the surface). Green curve represents pressure distribuition with flow. Pressure gets lower on the upper
surface and higher on the lower surface.

Pressure is force per unit area. When integrated over a certain area, total force due to that pressure distribution
can be found. Total aerodynamic force can be found by integrating the pressure distribution over the entire wing
area. In the no flow case total aerodynamic force is zero since pressure is same everywhere and we have a
closed surface.

Distributed pressure

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Since the pressure is the same at every point on


the surface, the net force is equal to zero.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

When the pressure distribution with flow is integrated we get a total net force since the distribution is not symmetric
anymore. The total net force is a vector, which has a magnitude, direction, and a point of application.

Distributed pressure

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Pressure distribution is not symmetric anymore. Distributed


pressure can be equivalently repesented by a single force
vector R acting on a certain point on the chord line, which is
called the center of pressure. And R can be represented using
its components L and D.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Total
aerodynamic
force vector for
the entire wing

Center of pressure of
the wing.
Centers of pressure
of the airfoils
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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In the above situation there is an unbalanced nose down pitching moment. The
aircraft cannot fly straight, it will go nose down. To keep the aircraft fly straight,
we need to have zero pitching moment. One way to have no pitching moment is
to have center of pressure of the aircraft coincide with the center of gravity. This
is not a good way of doing that, due to many reasons both center of gravity and
center of pressure may change during the flight, resulting in nonzero pitching
moment.

To have zero pitching moment in throughout entire flight, horizontal stabilizers


are used.

Force on the horizontal stabilizer can be changed to make the total pitching
moment zero. That's why it is called horizontal stabilizer, its job is to make the
aircraft fly horizontally in a stable way.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

R is a vector in 2D space, which can be represented using two scalar quantities. If you chose to represent R using
polar coordinates, you need to specify its magnitude and angle. Or you can represent it using cartesian
coordinates. For that we need to choose two axes and then we can represent the R vector using its components
along these two axes. First axis is chosen to be along the direction of V_inf and the second one is perpendicular to
that. The component of R along V_inf direction is called the Drag force, and the other component perpendicular to
V_inf is called the Lift force.
The resultant force R (its magnitude, direction, and the point where it applies on the chord, i.e., center of pressure
(c.p.)) depends on various factors, including V_, alpha, c (chord length, i.e., size of the airfoil), and camber and
thickness distribution.

Flow on the upper and lower surfaces are symmetric. As a result of that we get no lift force. The net resultant
aerodynamic force is in the direction of flow. In this case R = D.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Streamline

With a symetric airfoil we can get lift force if we have a nonzero angle of attack.

velocity of an air particle before it encountered the airfoil.

velocity of an air particle after it passed through the airfoil.


For a symmetric airfoil under a symmetric air flow the pressure distribution on the upper and lower surfaces will be
symmetric. A symmetric air flow is achieved when the air flow is parallel to the chord line (zero angle of attack). If
the angle of attack is different than zero then both the air flow and pressure distribution are not symmetric

it's not pure rotation, length of the V vector may change as well.

Above diagram represents a conventional aircraft in horizontal flight. Horizontal stabilizor has a symmetric airfoil
and since alpha=0 there is no lift force on the horizontal stabilizor. Elevator is used to control the lift force (both
magnitude and direction) on the horizontal stabilizer such that the pitching moment on the center of gravity is zero
for

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

By changing the elevator angle the horziontal stabilizor starts deflecting the air. This creates a lift force on the
horizontal stabilizor. In the above case we get a nose down pitching moment. We can get a moment in the orther
direction by changing the elevator angle in the other direction.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

If the angle of attack of a SYMMETRIC airfoil changes, R vector changes (both its magnitude
and direction, or both L and D), but the point of application (cp) does not change.

If the angle of attack of a CAMBERED airfoil changes, both the R vector (both its magnitude and direction, or
both L and D) and the point of application (cp) change.

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Notes_2014.03.04.pdf page 13 of 14

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

For cambered airfoils (positive camber), cp


moves forward as alpha is increased.

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Notes_2014.03.04.pdf page 14 of 14

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

To know the aerodynamic forces on an aircraft, we need to know three scalar


quantities, which are L, D and center of pressure. It is difficult to work with a force
with a changing center of application. To avoid that, we consider a fixed point on
the aircraft, and assume that the L and D forces are applied at this fixed point.
For the calculation to be correct, we introduce a pitching moment applied at that
fixed point by the original force vector.

Leading edge is a fixed point on the


aircraft!

Instead of the R vector applied at the center of pressure, we assume that R is


applied at the leading edge and in addition to the R vector there is a pitching
moment applied at that point. Above two cases are exactly equal to each other.
The difference is that in the first one we need to know the R vector and center of
pressure that will be changing during the flight. In the second one we need to
know the R vector and the moment with respect to the leading edge, which will
also be changing during the flight. This idea becomes very useful in a wind
tunnel where pitching moment with respect to a fixed point can be measured very
easily compared to center of pressure.

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Notes_2014.03.07.pdf page 1 of 5

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

For various reasons (to compute its performance, motion, etc.) as aerospace engineers
we would like to compute the forces and moments acting on aircraft. We want to make
our lives easier by coming up with formulations that are easy enough to work with. We
will be considering conventional aircraft only. Conventional aircraft have a dedicated
part to create aerodynamic forces, called wing.

In reality every part of the aircraft is surface is subject to air pressure that contributes
to the total forces and moments. To make our lives easier we only consider the
forces generated by the main wing and the tail surfaces. We loose some accuracy by
doing that, but for conventional airfraft the results we get are very close to the real
numbers.
Another trick we do to simplify equations is that instead of the actual distributed
forces we work with equivalent concentrated forces (R). We don't loose any accuracy
here, the vector R represents the distributed forces exactly without any error. R
vector is represented using three scalar quantities (L and D forces and the location of
cp, x_cp).

R force creates a moment on a fixed point (leading edge for example) on the aircraft due
to having a moment arm (l). Pitching moment is equal to R times l. In this case instead
of using these three scalar quantities (L and D forces and c.p.) we can replace c.p. with
pitching moment with respect to a fixed point. In this case the R vector can equivalently
be represented by L, D, and M_LE (if it is moment with respect to the leading edge).
Other fixed points such as quarter chord point can be used as well.

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Notes_2014.03.07.pdf page 2 of 5

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

What we need to do now is to find some mathematical formulas that give numerical vaues of these three quantities
(L, D, and M for longitudinal motion) for the type of aircraft we have for all possible flight conditions (altitude, speed,
angle of attack, ...). In other words we are looking for mathematical functions that contain the effects of all the
factors that contribute to aerodynamic forces. For example for the lift force we are looking for a function of following
variables (and many others). We need similar functions for D and M as well.

There are a lot of factors that affect these forces (airfoil thickness, camber, wing planform shape, etc.) and every
one of these factors should be included in the equations for the results to be useful. Effects of some factors are
predictable and very easy to model. For example air density (denoted by Greek letter rho) has a direct effect on the
forces. In other words all aerodynamic forces change linearly with air density. This means if the air density is
changed by a factor "a", then the forces change by the same factor "a". In this case we can include the effect of
density by including it as a multiplicative term in our equations.

Density of air in terms of mass per volume.


Another factor whose effect on the forces is predictable is the flow speed. Both theoretical and experimental
studies show that the relation between aerodynamic forces and flow speed is quadratic. This means if the flow
speed is changed by a factor "a", then the forces change by the square of the same factor "a". In this case we can
include the effect of V_inf by including V_inf squared as a multiplicative term in our equations. In this case the
equation becomes

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Notes_2014.03.07.pdf page 3 of 5

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

There is one other thing that can be modeled by a simple linear relation, and that is the size of the aircraft.
Consider two aircraft with exactly the same design, but with different dimensions. One is a scaled model of the
other. The forces on these two aircraft will be scaled as well. In this case the effect of the size of the aircraft can
be taken out of the equation by introducing the wing planform area S:

With the factor 1/2 introduced above we get the dynamic pressure in the aerodynamic equations, which can be
considered as the kinetic energy of fluid particles. The remaining factors in the f_3 function are not easy to model
with simple analytic functions. Therefore we leave that function as it is and call it an aerodynamic coefficient.

is the lift coefficient that depends on the shape of the airfoil, wing, viscosity and compressibility
effects of the air, etc.

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Notes_2014.03.07.pdf page 4 of 5

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Dynamic pressure has the physical unit of force per area. S is wing surface area. So dynamic pressure multiplied
by wing surface area gives a force. Left hand side of the equations are force as well, this means aerodynamic
coefficients (C_L, C_D, C_Y) are dimensionless. From the above equations we can write them as

Now the problem of finding equations that give aerodynamic force values becomes the problem of finding the
nondimensional values of aerodynamic coefficients. If you want to find the lift force for a particular aircraft flying
with a certain configuration (flaps, spoilers, ailerons, elevator, etc are all set to certain positions) at a certain angle
of attack you need to know the value of C_L for that particular configuration. The benefit of using nondimensional
coefficients for this purpose instead of the dimensional force (L) is that you can find the values of coefficients by
doing experiments on much smaller scale models.

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Notes_2014.03.07.pdf page 5 of 5

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Dynamic pressure has the physical unit of force per area. S is wing surface area. So dynamic pressure multiplied
by wing surface area gives a force. Left hand side of the equations are also force, this means aerodynamic
coefficients (C_L, C_D, C_Y) are dimensionless. We use the same equation structure for aerodynamic moments
as well, but since moment has the unit of force times distance, to make moment coefficients dimensionless we
need to introduce a distance to the right hand side. For this purpose mean aerodynamic chord length is used for
the pitching moment and wing span is used for the rolling and yawing moments as follows:

From the above equations aerodynamic coefficients can be written as follows:

Now the problem of finding equations that give aerodynamic force values becomes the problem of finding the
nondimensional values of aerodynamic coefficients. If you want to find the lift force for a particular aircraft flying
with a certain configuration (flaps, spoilers, ailerons, elevator, etc are all set to certain positions) at a certain angle
of attack you need to know the value of C_L for that particular configuration. The benefit of using nondimensional
coefficients for this purpose instead of the dimensional force (L) is that you can find the values of coefficients by
doing experiments on much smaller scale models.

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Notes_2014.03.11.pdf page 1 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In order to find the forces for all possible configurations you need to have a huge database of aerodynamic
coefficients for all those configurations. There are different ways to obtain these values. One is to actually do
experiments and measure all these forces with sensors. ALso there are advanced computer programs that can
calculate these values by solving complex fluid mechanics equations. Obviously doing real experiments for large
aircraft is not possible. But much smaller scale models can be built and tested in wind tunnels to find these values.
In this example put the small model in a wind tunnel and measure the lift
force for a particular configuration. C_L will be

Once you find C_L for the small model you can compute the lift force for the
real aircraft as follows:

Aerodynamic coefficients are nondimensional, that


means their values are the same for both the small
scale wind tunnel model and the full scale real
aircfraft.
Dynamic pressure for the wind tunnel test conditions and the wing
surface area of the small scale test model.
Dimensional lift force you measure in the tunnel.
You take the C_L value you obtained in the test into the following equation to
estimate the force on the real aircraft:
The same lift coefficient as before.

Dynamic pressure for the real flight condition and the wing surface area
of the full scale real aircraft.
Lift force acting on the real aircraft.
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Notes_2014.03.11.pdf page 2 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Since the model doesn't move, net force acting on it


should be zero.

At the point where the model is fixed we place sensors that can measure forces and
moment. In other words in the above example Fx, Fy, and Mr are directly measured,
which gives the drag force, lift force, and moment with respect to leading edge.
As you see, in a wind tunnel we can measure lift and drag forces and the pitching moment
with respect to a fixed point directly. From the moment measurement we can go back to
the center of pressure location as follows:

We use these forces to simulate the aircraft for example, for which we use the equations of
motion:
Even if we measure the center of pressure directly, we need to
convert it to moment for simulation purposes. Therefore
measuring the moment directly simplifies our job.

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Notes_2014.03.11.pdf page 3 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

So for every possible aircraft configuration and flight condition we need to know the
corresponding values of the aerodynamic coefficients. This requires a huge number of
aerodynamic coefficient values to be known.

If you consider all possible


combinations of these
variables, number of
required coefficient values
can easily reach tens of
millions for a realistic
simulation.

Considering all the possible configuration changes you need a huge database to cover all possible options. Multi
dimensional databases are created for that.

??? You do a test to find the aerdynamic coefficients for this particular
configuration.

This is a slightly different configuration where the elevator deflection angle has
changed a little bit. You do another test to measure the forces for this configuration
as well and find the aerodynamic coefficients for this configuration.

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Notes_2014.03.11.pdf page 4 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Considering the number of variables and that you need to find the values for combinations of all possible values for
all these variables, for a fairly realistic database you need millions of values for your aerodynamic coefficients.
Now the quesiton is how can we make sure that aerodynamic coefficients of a real aircraft with a wing span of 50
m flying at a speed of 800 km/h will be the same as the aerodynamic coefficient of a scaled model with a wing
span of 50 cm flying in a wind tunnel at a different speed? The answer is that you need to check the Reynolds and
Mach numbers. If they are the same (or in the same range) then you can be sure that the coefficients you
obtained on a scale model can be used to correctly estimate the forces and moments on the real aircraft. But what
are these Reynolds and Mach numbers?? These will be discussed below.
Suppose that a 100 m long ship is released in sea at a speed of 10 km/h, it will continue moving for some time
before it eventually stops. Then consider a 10 cm long model released at the same speed. It will come to stop
much sooner (even you measure the distance in terms of length of the model).

So far we have been talking about pressure forces that form the aerodynamic forces. By definition pressure
forces are perpendicular to the surface. Due to viscosity of air there are some tangential forces as well.
The total force acting on the airfoil is actually the
sum of the pressure and friction forces. For a
large aircraft flying at high speeds the pressure
forces are much greater than the friction forces
and hence the friction forces may be neglected.
But for a very small model under a slower flow the
importance of friction forces increases.

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Notes_2014.03.11.pdf page 5 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

There are various factors that determine when the friction forces become significant or negligible. Reynolds
number is a nondimensional number that practically tells this. A very important factor is how sticky the fluid is,
measured by its viscosity. From our point of view this is not an issue since we almost always consider aircraft
flying in air. Other factors are the speed of the flow and the size of the object.

You can also consider it as the ratio of the green arrows to the red arrows in the above figure. If the Reynolds
number is large that means the friction forces can be neglected. If it is low, especially less than one than that
means the frictions forces are the dominant forces acting on the object.

For a small bird Re may be on the order of 100, for a fly, on the order of 1, and for micro organisms
moving in water it may be on the order of 0.0001.

Reynolds number is the ratio of inertia forces (perpendicular forces) to viscous


forces (tangential forces). Since it is a ratio of two forces it has no units. If the
ratio is much greater than one, that means the tangential forces are negligible:
In this case stickyness of the fluid has almost no effect. As a
result the fluid cannot stay together and that's why you get a
splashy response when you drop an object into a fluid.

If Reynolds number is low (less than one) than the tangential forces are greater.
In this case stickyness of the fluid is very important. As a
result the fluid wants to stick, it stays together and that's
why you get a very smooth and non-splashy response
when you drop an object into a fluid.
You cannot predict flow conditions by checking viscosity only, you need to
consider the Reynolds number. A bacteria swimming in water has a very low
Reynolds number, on the order of 10^-5. This means the bacteria will feel too
much fluid friction, it will compare to an insect swimming in honey.
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Notes_2014.03.11.pdf page 6 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In the above experiment the Reynolds number is changed by changing the


viscosity of the fluid. Other parameters that effect the Reynolds number (V and
D) are the same in these four cases. You will get the same results if you achieve
the above Reynolds numbers by changing other things like the speed of the jet,
or the diameter of the flow.

Reynolds number (ratio of inertial to viscous forces) determines the characteristics of the flow. For low Re flow
viscous forces are important, meaning the fluid wants to stay together. This results in laminar flow. In laminar
flow streamlines are parallel to each other, at any given instant the velocity of the flow will be the same. We call
this steady flow.

In contrast for high Re flow, viscosity becomes negligible. The fluid doesn't want to stay together anymore. Just
like in the animations we saw the flow becomes random and chaotic. This means the streamlines get mixed up
and constantly change randomly.

Since the streamlines change constantly the flow is unsteady and such flows are called turbulent flows.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Consider the viscous flow animation on wikipedia:

Suppose that a ball of diameter 1 cm is dropped into honey and water at a speed of 10 m/s.

15<2000 meaning that the second test with honey results in laminar flow whereas for first test Re1=100000 and
that tells that we get turbulent flow. This agrees with what we see in the animation. Remember that viscosity is
very important in getting a laminar or turbulent flow, but it is NOT the only factor. So we can't decide on the flow
type by just considering the viscosity, we need to know the Re #.
Now suppose that a dust particle with a diameter of 10^-5 m drops into water at a speed of 1 m/s. The Re # is
then:
Obviously we get a laminar flow for this case. In other
words even though we have water, the little particle
dropped into it will not cause any splashes and will
smoothly sink into it as in the bottom animation. Again, just
because water is not as sticky as honey, you can't say that
it will always cause a turbulent flow.

Now to complete the story, also consider a ball of diameter 1 m dropped into honey at a speed of 100 m/s. The
Re # for this case can be found as:

This means we get a turbulent flow, honey will be


splashing around randomly, just like the top animation.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In this figure you see lift coefficients measured for the NACA
4412 airfoil in a wind tunnel. The tests were conducted as
various Reynolds numbers. Remember the Re # formula is:

As long as you use air in the tunnel, rho and mu stays


constant. You may change them a little bit by changing the
temperature, but you can't change the Re # too much by just
changing the temperature. If you want to change the Re #
by a factor 150 as seen here, just changing the flow speed
will not be sufficient either. Because if you try to increase
the speed that much you will change the Mach number
significantly, which will introduce compressibility effects. So
you need to change V and c_bar together to vary the Re #
that much. In other words you start with a very small c_bar
(small wing) at a very low speed and get a low Re # that
way. Then you bring in a much bigger wing and test it at a
much greater speed to obtain a much bigger Re #. The last
question (#5) in AE172_Spring2011_MT1.pdf is related to
this. L and D data obtained at different Re #'s are given.
You need to use the data for the correct Re # to find the
answer.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

When something moves in air, it disturbs the air and creates pressure waves. These waves travel at the speed of
sound. If the disturbing object approaches the speed of sound, the waves cannot get away fast enough and they
start to accumulate. Accumulated pressure waves form a shock wave. Shock waves and supersonic flow are
explained in detail in Aerodynamics 2 course. All you need to know for this course is that as the speed of flow
increases air becomes more and more compressible. Like viscosity, there is a single nondimensional number that
tells you whether you need to be worried about compressibility or not. This is the Mach number. If M<0.3 then you
have an incompressible (subsonic) flow. For the remainder of this course we will always assume that it is the case.

As the Mach number approaches 1, cp moves


and as a result the pitching moment acting on
the aircraft is not zero anymore. This causes
the aircraft to start rotating around the pitch axis
very rapidly.

Page 71 of 225

Notes_2014.03.14.pdf page 1 of 2

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Normally the elevator is used to control the pitching moment, but in a supersonic
flow, elevators become useless due to shock waves. To overcome this problem
and have a controllable aircraft at supersonic speeds, they proposed to use all
moving horizontal stabilizers. In other words the entire horizontal stabilizer is
used as an elevator.

Even when the aircraft is flying at M<1, local speed of the flow around the A/C may exceed M = 1 resulting in shock
waves. To be able to fly as fast as possible without getting the drag increase due to shock waves you should design
your aircraft such that the speed at which shock waves start to form is as high as possible. This speed is called the
critical Mach number, which is always less than 1 (why?). On old aircraft critical Mach number may be as low as
0.6. Today modern aircraft can fly at speeds close to M=0.9 without getting substantial drag increase. The optimum
cruising speeds are less than M=0.85. Formation of shock waves on the wings can be delayed by using special
airfoil designs called supercritical airfoil.
Critical Mach number is the greatest limit on the speeds of modern airliners. That's why the ideal cruising speeds of
all modern airliners are between M = 0.8 and 0.85. Sure you can make an aircraft that can fly at M = 1, but for a
very little benefit in speed you may have to consume twice as much fuel, which nobody wants, especially at today's
fuel prices.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

3D Effects
We have talked about how aerodynamic forces are created on a 2-dimensional airfoil. On many aerodynamic data sources you can find values of
aerodynamic coefficients given for airfoils. Data given for an airfoil refers to an idealized wing with infinite span.

The assumption here is that we have a wing section with the same airfoil at every y
location and the wing has infinite wing span. In this configuration nothing changes along
the y direction and the resultant aerodynamic force for every airfoil is the same as shown
in this figure. This idealized configuration is referred to as a 2D wing.
In reality however aircraft have finite wing spans and have 3D wings.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

If you look at the situation at either end of a wing (wing tip) you can easily
convince yourselves that the high pressure air from below the wing will jump
up to fill the low pressure zone at the top. In inner sections the wing
separates the air at different pressure levels and the high pressure air at the
bottom can push the wing up, creating the lift force. At the wing tips however
the physical separation ends and this allows the two flows to mix. High
pressure air from below swirls up to the low pressure area above forming a
rotating flow called a vortex. Since at the wing tip the pressure equalizes no
lift force can be created, but relatively strong drag force acts on the wing at
the tips. As you move from the centerline to the wing tips, lift force reduces
and drag force increases. In other words the resultant aerodynamic force is
tilted backwards as shown with blue arrows in this figure.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Normally vortices would be created at the


leading and trailing edges as well, but the
freestream flow prevents that. High pressure
air below the wing can only escape to the low
pressure area through the wing tips. For
wings with very high sweep angles vortices
can be created at the leading edge as well as
shown below.
Freestream flow

Vortices are created at the tips only for a


rectangular wing (sweep angle is zero)
Page 75 of 225

Freestream flow

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

On a wing with high sweep angle the flow that


hits the airfoil is the perpendicular component of
the freestream flow and it will be slower. In that
case leading edge vortices may be created.

Leading edge vortices visible on a condorde


during landing. Note that the lift coefficient
during landing is close to maximum, meaning the
pressure difference is too much. Strongest
vortices are created in such conditions.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In 2D case since all the force vectors on all the airfoil sections are the same you see
just one vector in the side view.
But in the 3D case due to high pressure air at the lower surface jumping up to the
upper surface at the wing tips we loose lift at the wing tips and get more drag
force. In other words the R vector gets tilted towards the drag direction as you
get closer to the wing tips.

If you look at the lift force distribution from the front you see something like this:

For the infinitely wide 2D wing you get the same lift force everywhere.

In 2D flow the only thing that determines the aerodynamic performance (how much lift force is
obtained for how much drag force) is the airfoil. But in 3D flow wing planform is important as well
for aerodynamic performance. In other words two wings with the same airfoil and same total
surface area, but with different planforms will have different aerodynamic performance.

Even if the two wings shown above have the same airfoil and surface area, their lift and drag
forces for the same flow conditions (speed and angle of attack) will be different. The one on the
right is aerodynamically more efficient because it has a smaller chord length at the wing tips. This
means the region where vortices are created is smaller and hence the wing tip vortices (wake
turbulence) will be weaker. As a result there will be less lift loss and less drag increase.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

2D wing data for an airfoil can be gathered in wind tunnel by making the wing extend through the entire width of the test section as shown above. This
leaves no gaps at the wing tips and hence the lower and upper flows cannot mix. In such a test almost constant lift force can be obtained at every y location
throuhout the entire wing span just like in a 2D wing.

In order to obtain 3D data in a wind tunnel you need to


leave enough space on all sides so that you don't measure
any wall effects.

Losses in lift and increases in drag due to wing tip effects can be improved by using a more slender wing planform.

If you compare the areas under the blue and red lift distributions you will find out that for the wing on the left you loose a bigger percentage of
the 2D lift. Wing tip effects depend on how slender the wing planform is, which is measured by the aspect ratio.

On powered aircraft drag force is balanced by the thrust provided by the


engines. However gliders have no engines that can provide thrust force.
Therefore minimizing drag on gliders is crucial and that's why they use
very high aspect ratio wings.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

High aspect ratio wings are good for aerodynamic efficiency, but for large aircraft it is not
practical to use them due to structural concerns. If you used a high AR wing on an airliner it
would look like this. It looks funny, but more importantly such an aircraft would have a very
large wing span. This would create problems at airports. Also making such a huge wing
strong enough is not easy. Probably it will end up being much heavier compared to an
aircraft with a normal wing, and this defeats the purpose of having a high AR wing.

High AR means that you have a wing that is closer to an ideal 2D wing. In the limit as AR goes to infinity a 3D wing approaches a 2D wing. And
as AR gets smaller you get farther away from a 2D wing. As you can see in the below CL vs alpha plot at a given alpha a low AR wing has a
smaller lift coefficient than a high AR wing. Low AR wings however stall at higher angles.

Page 79 of 225

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Before stall lift coefficient


When the angle of attack reaches stall angle flow separates and
increases almost linearly with
the lift coefficient does not increase anymore. Furthermore due to
angle of attack. Since there is
separation flow becomes unsteady.
no separation flow is steady.

According to the CL-alpha curve, both alpha1 and alpha2 have


the same lift coefficient. However there is a difference, alpha1 is
before stall so you get a steady lift force since the flow is
attached to the wing surface. Alpha2 is after stall where the flow
is detached, so there is separated turbulent flow over the wing,
which gives a fluctuating force. On average you get the same
force, but it will be fluctuating force and hence it will cause the
aircraft to shake.

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Aerodynamic coefficients depend on the design of the aircraft (which is fixed in


the air). While flying the coefficients change due to pilot control inputs and flight
conditions. Effect of flight speed is already included in the V^2 term, but speed
may still change the coefficients if Re and M numbers change significantly. For
most flights changes in these numbers will be negligible. During a flight except
for pilot inputs the most important factor that causes the aerodynamic
coefficients to change is the angle of attack.
For performance calculations we need to know the lift and drag coefficients in
the entire flight interval.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Induced Drag
Forces (lift and drag) on a 3D wing are different than the forces on a 2D wing due to
wing tip vortices, which are created by the pressure difference between the upper
and lower surfaces at the wing tips. These vortices cause the lift to reduce and drag
to increase around the wing tips. For airfoils usually 2D coefficients are measured in
wind tunnels and we need to make corrections for 3D wings to use these data for
real aircraft.
Decrease of lift on a 3D wing
is not easy to model and
there are no simple
equations that we can use to
compute lift loss. Therefore
to estimate the lift of a real
3D aircraft you need test
results obtained with the 3D
configuration.

The increased drag of a 3D wing is represented by an additional drag coefficient:

Total drag
coefficient
of the 3D
wing

Form drag,
or parasite
drag. Drag
coefficient
when there is
no lift.

Page 89 of 225

Induced drag, this is the additional drag that forms the


difference between 3D and 2D wings. It is caused by wing
tip vortices, which are created by the pressure difference
between the upper and lower surfaces of the wing. If there
is no pressure difference, there will be no vortices and no lift
force. In other words induced drag is present only when
there is pressure difference (or lift force). Therefore this
drag term is also known as lift induced drag, or drag due
to lift.

Notes_2014.03.25.pdf page 2 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Another 3D wing design with a different


CDi coefficient than the other wing.

For a single 2D design (airfoil) there may be infinitely many 3D designs. All these
different 3D designs will have different CDi coefficients. So we need to have a
mathematical mechanism to incorporate the critical aspects of 3D design into the CDi
formula. In other words we need to have an equation that will give us the CDi values of
the two wings shown above correctly.

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Notes_2014.03.25.pdf page 3 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

For any flying object, total drag coefficient is a function of the lift coefficient. When CL is
zero CDi will be zero as well. As CL increases, pressure difference will be increased as
well and as a result wing tip vortices will be stronger. In this case drag increase will be
more (CDi will be higher). From the physics of the problem we expect CDi values to
increase with increasing CL values. Relation between CD and CL can be studied
experimentally.

Page 91 of 225

Notes_2014.03.25.pdf page 4 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

For typical aircraft all experiments made shows a parabolic relation between lift and drag
coefficients:

Therefore CD vs CL relation of a 3D wing


can be expressed mathematically as

The "a" coefficient in the parabolic equation is for the drag that exists even when
there is no lift force, and the "b" coefficient shows how much drag is increased
when there is lift force, which is related to the 3D design. Effects of the planform
shape and aspect ratio are both included in the "b" coefficient.
where K is a function of planform shape and aspect
ratio.

Above equation is called the drag polar equation. From the textbook: " The drag
polar of an aircraft contains almost all the information required to analyse its
performance and hence to begin a design".
In general there is a third component in the drag coefficient that represents
compressibility effects:

CDw gets very large when there are shock waves. In this course we assume
that flow is incompressible and hence ignore CDw.
Page 92 of 225

Notes_2014.03.25.pdf page 5 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In a wing design there are three main factors. First one is the selection of the airfoil. Effect
of the airfoil is included in the CD0 term. The other two main factors related to wing design
are planform shape and aspect ratio. To study the effects of these two factors we can
study them separetly. First freeze the planform shape and change aspect ratio to see its
effect on the K coefficient. Then freeze the aspect ratio and change the planform shape to
see its effect on the K coefficient.

Aspect ratio of a 3D wing is important. Having high aspect ratio is better in the sense that the losses due to
wing tip effects get relatively smaller.
Aspect ratio is important, but it cannot by itself quantify the losses. This is because you may have various
wings with the same aspect ratio, but they may all have different losses.

Suppose that the two wings above have the same aspect ratio, but we
expect the one on the right to be more efficient (its C_Di must be lower).

Page 93 of 225

Notes_2014.03.25.pdf page 6 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

We already discussed that high aspect ratio is good for aerodynamic efficiency. Let's keep
aspect ratio fixed and consider the effect of the planform shape on aerodynamic efficiency.

Again there are some theoretical studies that show that the most efficient
planform design is the one that has an elliptical spanwise lift distribution.
From both theoretical and experimental studies we
know that the best possible aerodynamic efficiency
(smallest K value) is obtained when the lift distribution
is an ellipse.

Front view of a wing, showing the spanwise lift distribution. Theoretical studies
show that the best possible 3D design is the one where the distribution is an
ellipse. One obvious way to achieve elliptic lift distribution is to have the wing
planform in the shape of an ellipse.

Page 94 of 225

Notes_2014.03.25.pdf page 7 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

So in the end following formula is developed for induced drag coefficient:

Where is pi is the mathematical constant, AR is the aspect ratio of the wing,


and "e" is a nondimensional number referred to as the Oswald efficiency factor.
Effect of the aspect ratio is explicitly included in the K expression. The effect of
the wing planform shape is included in the e parameter. Since the best
possible wing design is elliptical, e=1 for an elliptical wing and for any other
design it is less than one. For a rectangle it is 0.7

Different wing planform shapes will have


different levels of losses due to wing tip
vortices even if they have the same aspect
ratio. The effect of the wing planform shape
on the induced drag coefficient is taken into
account by a nondimesional number called
the Oswald efficiency factor. It is known that
the best possible wing planform shape is
elliptical. For every other wing shape C_Di
will be greater. Oswald efficiency factor is
denoted with "e". Its value is 1 for elliptical
wings and smaller for everything else. For
rectangular planform e=0.7.

Page 95 of 225

Notes_2014.03.25.pdf page 8 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Ellipse is the best possible wing shape for subsonic


flight. For high speed flight to avoid shock waves
swept wings are used as shown here. Also for
efficiency (low induced drag) what is important is that
the spanwise lift distribution should be close to
elliptical. If the wing planform is elliptical you get an
elliptical spanwise lift distribution. You can get
spanwise lift distributions close to elliptical with other
planform shapes as well. Planforms of modern
airliners are far from being elliptical, but their
efficiencies are not that bad (e>0.85)

In the end following formula is obtained for C_Di:

In the dynamic pressure term we have the air density. To use these equations
for performance calculations we need to know its value.

Page 96 of 225

Notes_2014.03.25.pdf page 9 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

Question: We have an aircraft with the following properties:


= 16.17 2
= 10.91
A 1/50 scale model of this aircraft is built and tested in a wind tunnel at a speed of = 30 /
where the air density was = 1.225 /3 . Following lift and drag forces are measured:

0.5

Drag Force (N)

Lift Force (N)

4
3
2
1

0.4

0.3

0.2

0.1

0
-2

6
8
(deg)

10

12

14

16

-2

6
8
(deg)

10

12

14

16

Part a): Assuming that the drag polar of the aircraft is given by the following equation, find the
parasite drag coefficient 0 and Oswald efficiency factor for this aircraft:
2
= 0 +

Part b): The real aircraft with a mass of 2,500 is flying at an altitude of 4,000 at a speed of
100 /. What should the angle of attack be so that the aircraft can maintain its altitude? How
much thrust force should its engine provide so that it can keep its speed?
Solution: In the drag polar equation there are two unknowns, 0 and . We are given a set of lift
and drag force measurements obtained in the tunnel. We can relate these force measurements to
and coefficients and then using these coefficient values we can solve for the two unknowns in
the above equations. Since there are two unknowns, two sets of data will be sufficient to
find these unknowns.
Lift and Drag forces are given by the following equations:
1 2

2
1
= 2
2
=

Note that = 16.17 2 for the real aircraft and a 1/50 scale model is tested in the tunnel. So for
the test we can use the following equations for aerodynamic forces:
1
16.17
(1.225)(30)2 (
)
2
502
1
16.17
)
= (1.225)(30)2 (
2
502

Page 97 of 225

Notes_2014.03.28.pdf page 1 of 8

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

In the data plot given above there are 19 measurement points and any two will be sufficient for us to
solve for 0 and . From the figure it is seen that at = 2 we have = 0 and = 0.1 . If
we use this point we can directly solve for 0 using a single equation. For = 2 we can write
1
16.17
(1.225)(30)2 (
)
2
502
1
16.17
)
0.1 = (1.225)(30)2 (
2
502
0=

= 0
= 0.028

Inserting the above pair into the drag polar equation we get
0.028 = 0 +

(0)2

0 = 0.028

Now we are left with one unknown, . To find that we need one more pair. From the figure
we see that we have round numbers at = 14 . Using the data for = 14 we get:
1
16.17
(1.225)(30)2 (
)
2
502
1
16.17
)
0.5 = (1.225)(30)2 (
2
502
5=

= 1.40
= 0.14

Inserting the above pair into the drag polar equation we get
0.14 = 0.028 +

(1.4)2

Wing aspect ratio can be found as


=

2 (10.91)2
=
= 7.36
16.17

Then we can solve for as


=

(1.4)2
= 0.76
(0.14 0.028)

To be able to claim that above number is the true Oswald efficiency factor, the wind tunnel test
must have been performed without any wall effects as shown below. Unfortunately the tunnel we
will use for our tests is small and our tests will look like the one on the left, with significant wall
effects.

Wind tunnel test (front view) with


significant wall effects, since tunnel walls
are too close to the model

Page 98 of 225

Wind tunnel test (front view) with


negligible wall effects, since tunnel walls
are far away from the model

Notes_2014.03.28.pdf page 2 of 8

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

Part b): The aircraft is flying at a mass of 2,500 kg is flying at an altitude of 4,000 m at a speed of 100
m/s. We are asked to find the angle of attack.

To maintain the altitude there should be no acceleration in the vertical direction. There are two
forces in the vertical direction and their sum should be equal to zero.

Note that no wind tunnel data is used to find the necessary lift coefficient value above. We need the
data to find the corresponding angle of attack. Wind tunnel data is given in terms of dimensional
forces in Newtons. So first we need to find the dimensional lift force on the tunnel model when =
0.37:

From the given data we see that 1.32 N corresponds to approximately 1.5 deg. So we can conclude
that the real aircraft must be flying at an angle of attack of 1.5 deg. Here we are making a very
important assumption that lift vs angle of attack curves for the wind tunnel model and the real
aircraft are the same. For this to be true the Reynolds and Mach numbers for both cases must be
close enough! I didnt check them here, please find them yourselves and see how different these
numbers are.
Next we are asked to find the necessary thrust force so that the speed of the aircraft doesn't change.
This requires that there should be no horizontal acceleration and hence

Page 99 of 225

Notes_2014.03.28.pdf page 3 of 8

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

To find the necessary thrust force I need to find the drag force. I know that the angle of attack is
approximately 1.5 deg. From the wind tunnel data the drag force value for the wind tunnel test at
1.5 deg is seen to be approximately 0.13 . Corresponding drag coefficient can be found as

You should be careful to use the correct , and values here. Since = 0.13 is for the
tunnel model we should use the values for the tunnel test. Then using = 0.036 found above we
can find the drag force for the real aircraft as

So for the given aircraft to continue flying at the given altitude and speed it needs a thrust force of
2,384 .
This is a very simple example, but can be used to calculate many things. Here are a few examples,
please study them and find the answers yourselves:
Part c): Total drag force is found in part b. How much of this force is for parasite drag and how much
is for induced drag? Find the ratio of /0 where is the induced drag force with =
and 0 is the parasite drag force with = 0 .
Part d): The aircraft drops 500 of cargo and the total weight reduces to 2,000 . If the pilot
wants to maintain the same flight with = 100 / at = 4,000 , what should the new
angle of attack be? What will be the necessary thrust force? Find the /0 ratio.
Part e): Repeat part d for the case with an added cargo of 500 such that the total weight
increases to 3,000 .
Part f): Suppose that the weight reduces to 2,000 as in part d. Angle of attack changes such that
the lift force becomes equal to the new weight. But this time the pilot doesnt change the
thrust force. Will the aircraft accelerate or decelerate? Suppose that the speed of the
aircraft changes at the same altitude and aircraft reaches a new equilibrium speed. What is
the new speed?
Part g): Suppose that the weight reduces to 2,000 as in part d. Angle of attack stays the same as
before. Will the aircraft climb or descend? Aircraft changes altitude by keeping alpha the
same and reaches a new equilibrium at a different altitude. What is the new altitude? You
need to find the air density at the new altitude and then find the corresponding altitude from
a standard atmosphere table by interpolation. Assume that the pilot adjusts the thrust force
such that the speed of the aircraft stays constant at = 100 / during the altitude
change.

Page 100 of 225

Notes_2014.03.28.pdf page 4 of 8

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

Part h): Consider part g where the altitude of the aircraft changes with constant angle of attack. This
time the thrust force stays the same during the altitude change so the speed will change as
well. Find the new altitude and speed. Note that in reality if the throttle is kept fixed, thrust
force changes with altitude as we will see later. But in this question we are assuming that
the thrust force doesnt change with altitude.

Page 101 of 225

Notes_2014.03.28.pdf page 5 of 8

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

We need to know the density, temperature, and pressure of air to estimate aerodynamic forces. Rho directly
appears in equations, temperature and pressure are required to compute the Mach and Reynolds numbers.
Variations of these air properties on the surface of the Earth are impossible to model with deterministic equations.
However their variations with altitude are fairly uniform and easy to predict. Let's take a look at these three
properties separately.
Pressure: Air pressure at any altitude is determined by the weight of the air above that level. This is easier to
understand if you consider water. Water is incompressible. That means in a given volume of water the density will
be the same everywhere. For air things are more complicated because it is compressible.

Just like in a tank of water, air pressure at any altitude


depends on the weight of the air above that level. But
since air density also changes with altitude, to compute
the air pressure you need to take varying air density into
account. Density decreases with altitude and it gradually
becomes zero. Therefore there is no boundary for air in
the atmosphere and hence there is no h value you can
use for computing the pressure.

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Notes_2014.03.28.pdf page 6 of 8

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In case of air, calculation of variation of pressure with altitude involves an integral equation that comes from the
equation of fluid statics. If you would like to see how this equation is obtained you can refer to the pdf file for
the lecture notes I posted at the beginning of the semester.
Temperature: Unlike pressure there are no simple equations that give variation of temperature with altitude.
However experimentally obtained measurements show that temperature variation with altitude consists of
straight lines as shown below.

Density: Once pressure and temperature are known, rho can be computed using the ideal gas law:

Values of these parameters at different


altitudes have been found according to
standard atmosphere assumptions
and presented in standard atmosphere
tables. To study the performance of
an aircraft at any altitude you can
simply take these values from the
standard atmosphere table.

Page 103 of 225

Notes_2014.03.28.pdf page 7 of 8

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Page 104 of 225

Notes_2014.03.28.pdf page 8 of 8

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

Question: We have an aircraft with the following properties:


= 16.17 2
= 10.91
A 1/50 scale model of this aircraft is built and tested in a wind tunnel at a speed of = 30 /
where the air density was = 1.225 /3 . Following lift and drag forces are measured:

0.5

Drag Force (N)

Lift Force (N)

4
3
2
1

0.4

0.3

0.2

0.1

0
-2

6
8
(deg)

10

12

14

16

-2

6
8
(deg)

10

12

14

16

Part a): Assuming that the drag polar of the aircraft is given by the following equation, find the
parasite drag coefficient 0 and Oswald efficiency factor for this aircraft:
2
= 0 +

Part b): The real aircraft with a mass of 2,500 is flying at an altitude of 4,000 at a speed of
100 /. What should the angle of attack be so that the aircraft can maintain its altitude? How
much thrust force should its engine provide so that it can keep its speed?
Solution: In the drag polar equation there are two unknowns, 0 and . We are given a set of lift
and drag force measurements obtained in the tunnel. We can relate these force measurements to
and coefficients and then using these coefficient values we can solve for the two unknowns in
the above equations. Since there are two unknowns, two sets of data will be sufficient to
find these unknowns.
Lift and Drag forces are given by the following equations:
1 2

2
1
= 2
2
=

Note that = 16.17 2 for the real aircraft and a 1/50 scale model is tested in the tunnel. So for
the test we can use the following equations for aerodynamic forces:
1
16.17
(1.225)(30)2 (
)
2
502
1
16.17
)
= (1.225)(30)2 (
2
502

Page 105 of 225

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

In the data plot given above there are 19 measurement points and any two will be sufficient for us to
solve for 0 and . From the figure it is seen that at = 2 we have = 0 and = 0.1 . If
we use this point we can directly solve for 0 using a single equation. For = 2 we can write
1
16.17
(1.225)(30)2 (
)
2
502
1
16.17
)
0.1 = (1.225)(30)2 (
2
502
0=

= 0
= 0.028

Inserting the above pair into the drag polar equation we get
0.028 = 0 +

(0)2

0 = 0.028

Now we are left with one unknown, . To find that we need one more pair. From the figure
we see that we have round numbers at = 14 . Using the data for = 14 we get:
1
16.17
(1.225)(30)2 (
)
2
502
1
16.17
)
0.5 = (1.225)(30)2 (
2
502
5=

= 1.40
= 0.14

Inserting the above pair into the drag polar equation we get
0.14 = 0.028 +

(1.4)2

Wing aspect ratio can be found as


=

2 (10.91)2
=
= 7.36
16.17

Then we can solve for as


=

(1.4)2
= 0.76
(0.14 0.028)

To be able to claim that above number is the true Oswald efficiency factor, the wind tunnel test
must have been performed without any wall effects as shown below. Unfortunately the tunnel we
will use for our tests is small and our tests will look like the one on the left, with significant wall
effects.

Wind tunnel test (front view) with


significant wall effects, since tunnel walls
are too close to the model

Page 106 of 225

Wind tunnel test (front view) with


negligible wall effects, since tunnel walls
are far away from the model

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

Part b): The aircraft is flying at a mass of 2,500 kg is flying at an altitude of 4,000 m at a speed of 100
m/s. We are asked to find the angle of attack.

To maintain the altitude there should be no acceleration in the vertical direction. There are two
forces in the vertical direction and their sum should be equal to zero.

Note that no wind tunnel data is used to find the necessary lift coefficient value above. We need the
data to find the corresponding angle of attack. Wind tunnel data is given in terms of dimensional
forces in Newtons. So first we need to find the dimensional lift force on the tunnel model when =
0.37:

From the given data we see that 1.32 N corresponds to approximately 1.5 deg. So we can conclude
that the real aircraft must be flying at an angle of attack of 1.5 deg. Here we are making a very
important assumption that lift vs angle of attack curves for the wind tunnel model and the real
aircraft are the same. For this to be true the Reynolds and Mach numbers for both cases must be
close enough! I didnt check them here, please find them yourselves and see how different these
numbers are.
Next we are asked to find the necessary thrust force so that the speed of the aircraft doesn't change.
This requires that there should be no horizontal acceleration and hence

Page 107 of 225

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

To find the necessary thrust force I need to find the drag force. I know that the angle of attack is
approximately 1.5 deg. From the wind tunnel data the drag force value for the wind tunnel test at
1.5 deg is seen to be approximately 0.13 . Corresponding drag coefficient can be found as

You should be careful to use the correct , and values here. Since = 0.13 is for the
tunnel model we should use the values for the tunnel test. Then using = 0.036 found above we
can find the drag force for the real aircraft as

So for the given aircraft to continue flying at the given altitude and speed it needs a thrust force of
2,384 .
This is a very simple example, but can be used to calculate many things. Here are a few examples,
please study them and find the answers yourselves:
Part c): Total drag force is found in part b. How much of this force is for parasite drag and how much
is for induced drag? Find the ratio of /0 where is the induced drag force with =
and 0 is the parasite drag force with = 0 .
Part d): The aircraft drops 500 of cargo and the total weight reduces to 2,000 . If the pilot
wants to maintain the same flight with = 100 / at = 4,000 , what should the new
angle of attack be? What will be the necessary thrust force? Find the /0 ratio.
Part e): Repeat part d for the case with an added cargo of 500 such that the total weight
increases to 3,000 .
Part f): Suppose that the weight reduces to 2,000 as in part d. Angle of attack changes such that
the lift force becomes equal to the new weight. But this time the pilot doesnt change the
thrust force. Will the aircraft accelerate or decelerate? Suppose that the speed of the
aircraft changes at the same altitude and aircraft reaches a new equilibrium speed. What is
the new speed?
Part g): Suppose that the weight reduces to 2,000 as in part d. Angle of attack stays the same as
before. Will the aircraft climb or descend? Aircraft changes altitude by keeping alpha the
same and reaches a new equilibrium at a different altitude. What is the new altitude? You
need to find the air density at the new altitude and then find the corresponding altitude from
a standard atmosphere table by interpolation. Assume that the pilot adjusts the thrust force
such that the speed of the aircraft stays constant at = 100 / during the altitude
change.

Page 108 of 225

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Spring 2013 AE172 Sample Problem

Dr. Ali Trker Kutay

Part h): Consider part g where the altitude of the aircraft changes with constant angle of attack. This
time the thrust force stays the same during the altitude change so the speed will change as
well. Find the new altitude and speed. Note that in reality if the throttle is kept fixed, thrust
force changes with altitude as we will see later. But in this question we are assuming that
the thrust force doesnt change with altitude.

Page 109 of 225

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In general there may be an angle between the chord line and the x axis of an
aircraft, called the wing incidence angle, shown above. In the below formulation
it is assumed to be zero. In our wind tunnel model it is 2.5 degrees. Also we
assume the thrust force to be parallel to the x axis, and in general there may be a
small angle between the two as shown below.

Page 110 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 1 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

The general motion of an A/C in 3D space consists of translation along three


axes and rotation around 3 axes, making a 6 degrees of freedom motion
(6DOF). Analysis of 6DOF motion mathematically is a complex problem. The
problem is simplified a lot if we restrict the motion to one plane only. For this
purpose we start with the analysis of longitudinal flight where the motion is
restricted to the vertical plane only (x-z plane).
In this case the A/C is allowed to translate along x and z axes and rotate
around the y axis (pitch) only. Therefore longitudinal flight is a 3DOF motion.
The main forces involved in longitudinal motion are given in the above
diagram.

To obtain the equations of motion we need to write the Newton's second law of motion two times (since we
are working on motion in 2D plane).

Sum of the vertical forces (in the direction of


lift force) cause the aircraft to rotate in the
vertical plane around some unkown point in
the air.

Page 111 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 2 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

We simplify the problem further by considering a steady flight (at constant speed) at constant altitude. Since the
altitude doesn't change the flight path is horizontal (gamma = 0).
You can also call this steady level flight, steady means flight variables (V and alpha)
do not change with time, and level means flight path is horizontal, or altitude is
constant. This is also known as cruising flight.

Here it is also assumed


that alpha is a small
angle.
These equations are valid for the simplest flight you can ever have, but it is perhaps the most important flight
phase. A big part of most of the flights take place as steady level flights at constant speed and altitude. If
you consider commercial flights between two cities for example you can say that more than 90% of the flight
fit into this category. Therefore performance of an aircraft in steady level flight is very important and luckily
performance calculations for this flight phase are the easiest.
In this flight phase the aerodynamic lift force should be equal to the weight and the engine(s) should be
producing enough thrust force to balance the aerodynamic drag force. If the lift force becomes smaller than
W, then there will be a net force in the direction of W, which will lead to an acceleration in W direction. As a
result the aircraft will start loosing altitude. Similarly if T gets smaller than D, there will be an acceleration in
direction of D, and as a result the aircraft will start to slow down.

Page 112 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 3 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

We also make an additional assumption that angle of attack is a small angle and
hence cos(alpha)=1 and sin(alpha)=0.

To maintain a steady level flight at a given speed V, lift coefficient has to have a specific value that can be
found from:

Page 113 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 4 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Example: Consider a Boeing 747 aircraft in steady level flight at an altitude where rho = 0.8 kg/m^3.

Suppose that the CL vs. alpha curves for various flap configurations are as follows:

Find the minimum speed at which the Boeing 747 can maintain a steady level flight with a clean wing (no
flaps).

We are looking for the minimum V value for which the above equations should be satisfied. V can be solved
from the above equations as follows:

W and S are constants. Since the altitude is also constant, rho is a constant number as well. In this case the
only variable in the above expression is C_L. The minimum V value is the one that corresponds to the largest
C_L value, which is 1.5 with no flaps.

Page 114 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 5 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Find also the minimum speeds for half flap and full flap configurations.

The speeds found above are called stall speeds. That means if the speed gets lower than the above speeds,
the lift force will become smaller than W and the aircraft will start loosing altitude.

Page 115 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 6 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

For a steady level flight the drag force on an aircraft is given by:

So the drag depends on rho (flight altitude), V (flight speed), C_L (depends on alpha, and alpha is
determined by the flight speed from the W=L equation), S, C_D0, e, AR, W (which are all properties of the
aircraft, W dependence comes from C_L).
To maintain the steady level flight on a given aircraft and flight condition (altitude and speed), the thrust
force generated by the engine(s) should be equal to the drag force.

Consider an aircraft in steady level flight with

Page 116 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 7 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Next let's calculate the necessary lift coefficient and resulting drag coefficients
and drag forces at another speed, V = 50 m/s.

Page 117 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 8 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

If you compute C_L, C_D, D_0, D_i in a certain velocity range you get the
following plots:

Wave drag is ignored in these plots, which


becomes significant as Mach number increases.
Page 118 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 9 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

As long as you can provide a thrust force equal to the drag force, your aircraft will continue is flight at the
same speed. This required thrust force can be supplied by various different engine types. Whatever type of
engine you use, the required thrust doesn't change.

Page 119 of 225

Notes_2014.04.01.pdf page 10 of 12

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

At low speeds induced drag is the dominant


drag component. This is because at a low
speed, to achive a lift force that is equal to the
weight of the aircraft, you need to have a large
C_L value. But this means there will a be large
pressure difference between the upper and
lower surfaces of the wing. This will cause
strong vortices to be created at the wing tips
and as a result the losses due to wing tip
vortices will be too much.

At high speeds, necessary C_L value will be small and


hence the induced drag force will be small as well.
This time however the parasite drag will be large and
that is because the dynamic pressure will be large.
For better performance (to fly the aircraft with less
fuel) we need to make T_R smaller. As you can see
from the figure on the right, the minimum T_R value
is obtained at a specific V value.

Mathematically the V value at which the T_R will be minimum can be calculated from:

The minimum T_R speed can be found in another way as:

For T_R to be minimum, we need the ratio of C_L/C_D to be maximum. At a given flight speed C_L has to
have a certain value for the L=W equation to hold. C_D has two components. C_D0 is constant, but C_Di
depends on C_L. Therefore for every flight speed C_L/C_D has a certain value. The C_L/C_D ratio makes a
peak at a certain speed and this speed corresponds to minimum T_R.

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We are looking for the condition where C_L/C_D ratio becomes maximum. This can
be found by using the drag polar relation as follows:

So for the lift-to-drag ratio to be maximum, induced drag coefficient should be equal to the
parasite drag coefficient. Therefore we can easily find the minimum T_R point if we know
the parasite drag coefficient.

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If you know the parasite drag coefficient of your aircraft, then you can say that the minimum
required thrust force for a steady level flight is achieved when CDi=CD0 and hence the total
drag coefficient is equal to twice the parasite drag coefficient.

In most cases you measure CD and CL coefficients in a wind tunnel and obtain the drag
polar graph experimentally:

The maximum lift-to-drag ratio is achieved


when the line drawn from origin to the drag
polar curve is tangent to it. Therefore if we
have the drag polar curve, we can find the
aerodynamic condition for minimum drag
point (CL and CD values for minimum drag)
directly from the graph.

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Drag vs. V curve for an aircraft in steady level flight is known together with the thrust force
provided by the engine. Since this is a steady level flight, there are only two possibilities for
the speed of the flight. The two possible speeds are shown above in the figure as V1 and
V2. If we have the Drag curve, we can simply find V1 and V2 graphically by intersecting the
constant thrust line with the drag curve as shown above. But if we want to calculate the two
possible speeds analytically we can use the drag equation as follows:

We are looking for two values of V for which the drag force given by the above equation
becomes equal to T.

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Using the above relation we can find the possible flight speeds for different thrust values
as shown next.

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Let's consider the effect of wing loading on aircraft speed:

Blue and green drag curves


correspond to two aircraft with two
different wing loadings with
everything else being the same.
The wing loading for the green
curve is twice the wing loading of
the blue curve.

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For an aircraft to maintain a steady level flight at a given altitude and speed, the thrust force
produced by the engine(s) must be equal to the aerodynamic drag force, which is called thrust
required. T_R is determined by the flight condition and aerodynamic design of the aircraft.

Normally C_D has a third component


called wave drag. For incompressible
flows at M<0.4 wave drag is negligible.
As M number increases wave drag
increases as well and becomes
dominant at transonic speeds (M~1).
But in this course we only consider
subsonic flights and C_Dw will always
be ignored.

T_A can be changed by the pilot through the throttle lever in the cockpit.
During a steady level flight

If the pilot gives more throttle then

The maximum cruising speed is achieved when T_A is set to maximum.

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Note that this is the maximum cruising speed. An aircraft can reach higher speeds momentarily,
while diving for example, but the maximum sustainable flight speed at constant altitude can be
calculated from (T_A)_max = T_R.

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When one person pushes another, his muscle power turns in to kinetic energy for both of them. The
energy transferred by the pusher to the other person is a loss for the pusher. If the same person
pushes himself agains a wall he gets a larger acceleration because his entire power becomes a kinetic
energy for himself.
If he pushes the wall with the same force
he gets a higher kinetic energy.

In this case the entire power


spent by the climber turns into
useful energy for himself. There
is no energy loss here, so
efficiency is 100%.

Page 130 of 225

In this case some of the power


spent by the climber turns into
useful energy for himself and
some of it goes to the mass. The
energy that goes to the mass is
lost (unless the purpose of the
person is to raise the mass).
Since some energy is lost here
efficiency is less than 100%.

Notes_2014.04.08.pdf page 9 of 9

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Let's assume that within time Delta_t, the amount of air that goes into the engine is Delta_m. In this case the
momentum of the air going in is equal to

and the momentum of the air exiting the engine is

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So the thrust of an air breathing engine depends on mass flow rate and the speed increase of the air. There are

two things that determine the amount of thrust produced by an engine, these are mass flow rate
(m_dot) and speed difference. To get large thrust you need to make both of these large. That means
you need to breathe more air in and make it exit the engine at a higher speed.

Now let's take a look at the energy increase in the flow. As air accelerates, its kinetic energy increases and this is
actually lost energy for our purpose since our purpose is to generate thrust force and not to accelerate air. Within
time Delta_t, Delta_m amount of air flows through the engine and the kinetic energy increase for this air is given
by:

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For an ideal engine (with no wasted energy) V_j should converge V_infinity and m_dot should
converge infinity. Helicopters come close to doing that by getting in a very high flow rate through
a very large disk area, while jet aircraft that can takeoff vertically (Harrier, F35) does the opposite.
They take in much smaller amount of air but give that air a very large acceleration. As a result
they can generate sufficient force to balance the weight, but they waste a lot of energy for doing
that.

In a propulsion system, the energy obtained by burning


fuel goes to two places. A part of that energy goes to
useful work by creating thrust force, and the rest is
wasted in terms of kinetic energy of the injected air.
Useful work done by the thrust force is:

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The speed at which the required thrust force is minimum for aircraft performance. We found earlier that T_R
becomes minimum when the CL to CD ratio is maximum. Similarly minimum P_R point is important as well
and we can also find the aerodynamic condition for that point.

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Fan in front of the engine works as a propeller. Big part of the thrust comes from the fan, smaller part comes from
the jet.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In a propeller engine, power generated can be considered to be constant with speed. If you plot
power available from a propeller engine together with power required you get something like this:
Since P=TV, thrust from a propeller becomes:

Above equation shows that from a propeller very


high thrust can be obtained at low speeds, but at
high speeds propeller thrust drops.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In jet engine on the other hand, thrust output of the engine


assumed to be constant with flight speed.

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Example:Consideranaircraftwiththefollowingliftanddragcoefficientsobtainedinawindtunnelexperiment:
Alpha (deg)
CL
CD
-----------------------------0
0
0.0200
1.0000
0.1121
0.0221
2.0000
0.2242
0.0252
3.0000
0.3364
0.0288
4.0000
0.4485
0.0341
5.0000
0.5606
0.0408
6.0000
0.6727
0.0482
7.0000
0.7848
0.0565
8.0000
0.8707
0.0676
9.0000
0.9532
0.0777
10.0000
1.0000
0.0900
11.0000
0.9308
0.1046
12.0000
0.4925
0.1164

To plot TR and PR curves we can use


the equations. For that we first need to
find the CD0 and K values by curve
fitting. Resulting TR and PR curves will
be approximate since the fitted drag
polar curve doesn't match the real drag
polar at high CD values.

Page 141 of 225

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For more realistic plots we can use the experimental data directly without using the idealized drag polar curve.
Here's how we do it:

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To find the minimum throttle setting at which the aircraft can maintain a steady level flight, we find the
minimum PR value, which is 9750 W. This corresponds to 16.25% of the maximum power.

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Altitude Effects on Thrust and Power Required


For steady level flight thrust and power required were calculated using

When the altitude changes air density changes as well.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

METU Aerospace Engineering


AE172 Introduction to Aircraft Performance

18.04.2014
Dr. A. Trker Kutay

Example: Consider an aircraft with the following lift and drag coefficients obtained in a wind tunnel
experiment:
Alpha (deg)
CL
CD
-----------------------------0
0
0.0200
1.0000
0.1121
0.0221
2.0000
0.2242
0.0252
3.0000
0.3364
0.0288
4.0000
0.4485
0.0341
5.0000
0.5606
0.0408
6.0000
0.6727
0.0482
7.0000
0.7848
0.0565
8.0000
0.8707
0.0676
9.0000
0.9532
0.0777
10.0000
1.0000
0.0900
11.0000
0.9308
0.1046
12.0000
0.4925
0.1164
vs and drag polar curves can be drawn as follows:

0.8

0.8

0.6

0.6
C

0.4

0.4

0.2

0.2

0
0

5
(deg)

0
0

10

0.05
C
D

0.1

The aircraft has a wing surface area of = 30 2 , weight of = 6,000 and is flying at the altitude
where = 1 /3 . Plot vs and vs curves for this aircraft.
First we should find a velocity range. The maximum lift coefficient is given to be ( ) = 1. This
can be used to find the stall speed of the aircraft from:
1
= = 2
2
Minimum will be obtained for the largest :
2
=
( )
20 /
The aircraft cannot maintain a steady level flight at a smaller speed, so we can start the and
curves from this speed. At this speed where = 1, we see that = 0.09. Using this we can find
the and values as:

1
Page 145 of 225

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METU Aerospace Engineering


AE172 Introduction to Aircraft Performance

= =

18.04.2014
Dr. A. Trker Kutay
1 2

2

1
1 (20)2 30 0.09
2
= 540
1
= = 3
2
1
= 1 (20)2 30 0.09
2
= 10800
=

Above numbers correspond to a single point on and curves at = 20 /. To obtain the curves
we need to find and values for a number of velocities. When flying at a different velocity, the
aircraft should have a different value to satisfy the = equation and there will be a different
value corresponding to that. For the second point of our curves we can use the values before
( ) , which corresponds to = 9. For that point we have:
=9 =

2
( )=9

20.5 /
Corresponding drag coefficient from the table
is = 0.078. Then we find the following
values:

1000
800
R

T (N)

1
( = 20.5) = 1 (20.5)2 30
2
0.078
489
1
( = 20.5) = 1 (20.5)2 30
2
0.078
= 10024

1200

600
400
200
0
0

We can repeat the calculations for =


8,7, ,1. Note that we shouldnt use = 0
because at that angle = 0 and that
corresponds to = !!! Resulting and
curves are shown to the right.

20

40

60

40

60

x 10

P (W)

6
4
2
0
0

20
V (m/s)

2
Page 146 of 225

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

METU Aerospace Engineering


AE172 Introduction to Aircraft Performance

18.04.2014
Dr. A. Trker Kutay

Engine throttle set to 50% means that the engine


is producing 50% of its maximum power:
= 0.50 60,000
= 30,000

1200

800
600
T @50% throttle

400

200
0
0

We know that for a propeller driven aircraft


available power is constant with speed. We can
show this on the curve as shown in the figure.
From the figure we can read the corresponding
speed as 42.9 /. We can find the available
thrust force from

Similarly we can find the maximum speed of the


aircraft at full throttle as = 55.3 /.
As an exercise find the / values at these two
speeds.

40

P @100% throttle
A

P @50% throttle
A

2
0
0

20

42.9
V (m/s)

3
Page 147 of 225

60

x 10

20
4

P (W)

T @100% throttle

1000
T (N)
R

Now suppose that the aircraft is driven by a


propeller and its engine can produce a maximum
useful power (that means propeller efficiency is
already included in this number) of ( ) =
60 at this altitude. Find the speed of the
aircraft if the engine throttle is set to 50%.

55.3

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

That means the drag coefficient has to have a specific


value as well, which comes from the drag polar relation.
Thrust required is then equal to the drag force obtained
from

Another way to prove this is to write


the thrust equation as a function of
speed and then do

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Altitude Effects on Thrust and Power Required


For steady level flight thrust and power required were calculated using

When the altitude changes air density changes as well.

Page 157 of 225

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Now let's see what happens to the minimum thrust point:

You need to know this


condition and also be able to
derive it from the basic
equations!!!

In the above expression for TRmin, there is rho. But this doesn't mean that TRmin depends on rho. The
reason is the V^2 term in the expression is not a variable. In other words V cannot be anything, it has to
have a certain value that corresponds to the minimum TR point. So we need to find that specific value of V
and put it there. Once we do that rho gets cancelled and we get the below experssion for TRmin which
doesn't depend on rho.

W, K, C_D0 are all constant numbers and T_R_min does


not depend on rho!

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Previously we had concluded that if the altitude is increased (rho is reduced), (TR)min occurs at
a higher speed. Now let's find how the (TR)min speed precisely changes with air density.

As you can see in the above equation the speed at which T_R becomes minimum depends on
rho. It is inversely proportional to the square root of rho. As rho decreases (when altitude
increases) V_TR_min increases.

When an aircraft climbs to higher altitudes


T_R versus speed curves shift to the right.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

You need to know this condition and also be able


to derive it from the basic equations!!!

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These results tell us that if the air density is changed, both the minimum PR value and the speed at which
PR becomes minimum change by the same scaling factor. This means that as rho is changed, minimum
PR point slides along a straight line as shown below

When an aircraft climbs to higher altitudes P_R


versus speed curves shift to the right and up
sliding along the dashed line shown.

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Consider the maximum speed of a jet aircraft at sea level.

The maximum V value that satisfies this equation


is the maximum speed of the aircraft at sea level.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Next consider the same aircraft flying at a higher altitude where rho=rho1<rho0

Maximum speed of the aircraft at the new altitude


can be computed using the following equation:

The maximum V value that satisfies this


equation is the maximum speed of the
aircraft at the altitude where rho=rho1.

As the aircraft keeps climbing, there will be a


certain altitude where TR and TA will intersect
at one point only. This means there is only
one possible steady level flight speed at that
altitude and if the aircraft climbs any more,
then there will be no possible steady flight
conditions above this altitude. The altitude
where TR and TA lines intersect at one point
only is defined as the absolute ceiling of an
aircraft.

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In this equation W, rho, S are all known. V is also given. The


only unknown is CL, which can be found as:

The required power to maintain a steady level flight at sea level and V=61 m/s is given above.
The engine should actually be generating more power than that and this is because some of the
power generated will be lost due to propeller efficiency.

The maximum engine power is 230 hp, so for this flight

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To get 52% of the maximum power the pilot should set the throttle lever to 52%.

Let's also compute the minimum TR and the speed at which TR becomes minimum:

For maximum speed the engine power should be set to maximum.

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Above equation has four solutions which are:


-43.2939 +71.2430i
-43.2939 -71.2430i
79.7198
6.8679

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AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

Previously we saw that the minimum speed of an aircraft is determined by the maximum lift coefficient.
Maximum lift coefficient can be increased using high lift devices (flaps, slats, etc.) and this reduces the
stall speed. If you reduce the stall speed limit too much, then engine power can become the limiting
factor. Below a certain speed required thrust (or required power) will become greater than the
maximum engine thrust (or power) and that means even if your aircraft can aerodynamically generate
enough lift force, your engine cannot balance the resulting drag force.

Steady climb, in other words the aircraft's altitude increases at a steady rate.

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The only difference between a steady level flight and steady climb is that in the former flight path
angle gamma is zero whereas in steady climb gamma is a positive nonzero number.

Normally in these
equations we should have
acceleration terms, but
here we are studying
steady climb, which
means accelerations are

In steady level flight L should be equal to W, but as you can see above in a steady climb L is
actually less than W.

Since in this expression we are taking the difference between the applied power and consumed
power, this term is called the excess power. Rate of climb for an aircraft is equal to the excess
power divided by the weight of the aircraft.

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In a steady level flight thrust of the engine should be equal to the drag force (this is called required
thrust) and in this case the excess power is:

To have excess power thrust available should be greater than the drag (thrust required).

While in steady level flight engine thrust should be equal to drag, to maintain a steady climb the
aircraft needs to have a positive excess power, which means the engine thrust should be greater
than the drag force.

Since rate of climb (R/C) depends on excess power, it becomes easier to use P_R curves to study
climbing flight for both propeller and jet engines.

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If the pilot decides to climb, then he needs to have


some excess power. One way to achieve that is to
increase the power of the engine (P_A). This will
increase thrust available and it will become greater
than T_R. In this case two things can happen (or their
combination). One is that the aircraft can start
accelerating, which increases its kinetic energy. Or the
speed stays constant but the aircraft starts climbing,
which increases its potential energy. Or these two can
happen simultaneously. How the excess power is
used
can be chosen by the pilot by adjusting the pitch angle appropriately using the elevator. Now we
are only considering the case where all the excess power is used for climbing. The more general
case of accelerated climb will be studied next.

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When the engine power is increased,


thrust gets larger than the drag force.
In unaccelerated climb the pilot
controls the aircraft such that the
additional thrust force does not
increase the speed of the aircraft.
Instead it increases the flight path
angle and the aircraft starts climbing.

If the pilot gives full throttle to increase applied to


power to maximum, he gets some excess power as
shown in the figure and this causes a positive rate of
climb. Let's go back to the previous example where a
propeller aircraft was flying at sea level at 61 m/s. We
can compute the maximum rate of climb for that
aircraft at that speed at sea level as follows:

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In these graphs you see changes of speed and altitude of an aircraft with time.

The aircraft is having a steady


level flight here, both speed and
altitude are constant.

The aircraft is having a steady


climb flight here, speed is
constant, but altitude changes
at a fixed rate.

This is the transient region where the flight is NOT steady. An aircraft cannot
jump from one steady flight condition to another instantaneously. It goes through
an unsteady phase as shown here. In this course however we only study steady
flights.

But the reduction in excess power is really slow so we can still call
it a steady climb.

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The aircraft starts climbing steadily at a rate of 5 m/s. Note that this is not exactly a "steady" climb.
As the A/C climbs, both P_R and P_A change with altitude. That means as the altitude increases
the rate of climb changes even if the speed and throttle setting don't change.
As the aircraft gains altitude, excess power
reduces. But the loss in excess power is
relatively slow and we consider this to be a
steady climb.
In this figure the red curves indicate P_R and
P_A at a higher altitude. Finally the aircraft
reaches an altitude where the P_A and P_R
becomes equal and the aircraft cannot climb
anymore.

Another way to have excess power while doing a steady level flight is to reduce required power.
This can be done by changing the flight speed unless the aircraft is already flying at min P_R
speed. If the aircraft is already flying at the min P_R speed, then P_R cannot be reduced any
further, since it is already at the minimum possible value.

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AnimportantdifferenceinthelowspeedR/Cperformance
canbeseenbetweenapropellerdrivenandajetA/C.Dueto
theP_A characteristicsofapistonenginepropeller
combination,largeexcesspowersareavailableatlowvalues
ofV_ justabovethestall.Incontrasttheexcesspower
availabletojetA/CatlowV_ issmall,witha
correspondinglyreducedR/Ccapability.

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Rate of climb (steady unaccelerated climb) of an aircraft depends on excess power,


which depends on the speed. There is a certain speed at which excess power becomes
maximum. For propeller aircraft this corresponds to the minimum P_R speed (which
corrseponds to C_Di=3C_D0 point). For jet aircraft the exact speed for maximum excess
power can be found mathematically. This was asked in 2010 MT2 and the solution is
available.

Both the required and available power change with altitude. That means as an aircraft
climbs its rate of climb decreases with altitude. You can compute the rate of climb at a
number of altitudes and when you plot them you can obtain R/C versus altitude curves.

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As you can see in the figure above, the maximum altitude an aircraft can climb to depends
on the flight speed. There is a certain speed at which the the aircraft's highest climbing
altitude becomes maximum, that maximum climb altitude is defined as the absolute ceiling.

Both P_R and P_A curves change


with altitude

Finally when you come to the


absolute ceiling, P_R and P_A
curves become tangent at one
point. That tangent point is the
speed for absolute ceiling.

rho1 altitude is the highest altitude that can be reached at


V0 speed. But this is NOT the absolute ceiling, because
the aircraft can still climb by changing its speed.

Page 176 of 225

AE172 Lecture Notes, Ali Trker Kutay

In the sample R/C versus altitude plot given above, the situation at 6.5 km is as follows:

At 6.5 km altitude P_R


is equal to P_A at 85
m/s speed. Therefore
the A/C has no excess
power at all and
cannot climb at this
altitude and speed.

Just like absolute ceiling, there is just one speed for


service ceiling.
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Assume that this excess power gives a


rate of climb of 100 ft/min. But we
cannot say that this is the service
ceiling altitude because this is not the
maximum rate of climb for this altitude.

This is a higher altitude and this is the


service ceiling because the maximum
rate of climb is equal to 100 ft/min at
this altitude.

Climb performance and ceilings are all related to


excess power. To increase the ceiling of an aircraft
you need to increase excess power. You can
achieve that by increasing power available or
reducing power required.

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An aircraft cruising (performing a steady level flight) at a certain altitude and speed may need
to change its altitude due to air traffic regulations. In this case the aircraft will perform
unaccelerated climb as we studied previously.

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An aircraft taking off from an airport needs to perform accelerated climb to reach its cruising
altitude and speed.

We have the same forces as before. In the unaccelerated


climb case we equated net forces to zero, now we
consider that flight speed is changing.

We multiply this equation by V and


divide it by W

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The pilot can choose how to split excess power between climbing and acceleration by
adjusting the elevator deflection appropriately.
We can also study the accelerated climb using the energy method.

total energy per weight

Energy height is a measure of the total mechanical energy of an aircraft, which is composed of
potential and kinetic energies. Energy height is the sum of the actual height (altitude) and V^
2/2/g which is the contribution of the kinetic energy to the total energy.

At this point
the total
energy
height is 10
km and it is
composed
of potential
energy only
with kinetic
energy
equal to
zero.

At this point
the total
energy height
is 10 km as
well and this
time it is
composed of
kinetic energy
only with
potential
energy equal
to zero.

The blue curves you see in this plot are constant energy height contours. That means
anywhere on a curve the total energy height is constant. Different points on a contour
corresponds to different points where the sharing of the total energy between potential
energy and kinetic energy are different.

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When it reaches the


cruising condition, the
B747 flies on the
14186 m contour at
this point (h=11000
m, V=250 m/s).

Just before it starts climbing, B747 is on the


326 m contour at this point (h=0, V=80 m/s).

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When it reaches
the cruising
condition, the
B747 flies on the
14186 m contour
at this point (h=
11000 m, V=250
m/s)

Just before it starts climbing, B747 is


on the 326 m contour at this point (h=
0, V=80 m/s).

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There are infinitely many different ways to perform this climb. Two special
cases are shown below. In the red path the aircraft performs an unaccelerated
climb at the initial speed of 80 m/s and then accelerates when it reaches 11 km
altitude. In the green one it first accelerates to cruising speed at sea level, and
then climbs to 11 km. These two are extreme scenarios and in general no pilot
will perform either one of these climbs and instead will follow a path like the
blue
one where the speed and
altitude increase at the
same time.

Suppose that an aircraft is flying at sea level at a speed of 100 m/s. The pilot
increases power available and the aircraft gets an excess power of 100 000
Watts. The aircraft weight is 10000 N. What will be the rate of climb if the pilot
performs unnaccelerated climb?

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What will be the acceleration of the aircraft if the entire excess power is used
for acceleration at constant altitude?

As the last case let's assume that the pilot starts climbing at a rate of 5 m/s and the rest
of the excess power is used for acceleration. What will be the acceleration?

This is for unaccelerated climb where the aircraft climbs at a constant speed.

If an aircraft could maintain the same rate of climb at every altitude, we could
compute the time to climb very easily. For example in a given condition if
R/C for an A/C is 5 m/s, we could directly say that it can climb 5000 m in
1000 seconds. But it is not the case, as we saw before rate of climb changes
with altitude. In this case the time to climb can be computed by integration
as follows:

Above integration can be performed analytically using equations of motion.


For this we need to find an expression for R/C as a function of altitude.
We can find R/C expression as a function of air density (rho), but to relate
th t
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with altitude we use atmosphere tables. Therefore analytical integration is


not easy. But we can compute the integral numerically. For that we need
to compute R/C at a finite number of altitudes and obtain the following
graph:
Then the time to climb
from 2000 m to 6000 m
for example is the area
of the region shown in
the figure.

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As you can see in this example time to climb at different speeds are different. For this aircraft time to climb from 0
m to 5000 m at 35 m/s is quicker than the climb at 65 m/s, because the area under the green curve is bigger.

Similarly time to accelerate at constant altitude can be calculated through numerical


integration as follows:

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Here we are assuming


that the speed of the
aircraft (both forward and
vertical)does not change.

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As discussed before the lift-to-drag ratio is a very important parameter for


aerodynamic efficiency. For a lot of different reasons a high L/D ratio is
preferred. This is one of them, if you have a high L/D you can glide at a
small angle, this means when released at a certain altitude you can travel
a long distance.

The max L/D condition is obtained when C_Di=C_D0, which is the point
where T_R becomes minimum. For maximum gliding range an aircraft
has to fly at the min T_R point.
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For best gliding range an aircraft needs to fly at the maximum L/D
condition, which happens to be the same condition for T_R minimum.
Flying at any other speed will result in an L/D value that is smaller than
(L/D)_max and this will reduce the gliding range.

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The aircraft starts gliding at 12000 m altitude. The pilot


sets the speed to 410 km/h and achieves a glide ratio of
12:1.

According to a Google search the best CL:CD ratio for this aircraft is approximately
18.

variable, reduces during


the flight
variable, equal to zero at the beginning of the
flight, increases during the flight
This is also constant, equal to W_0 minus the weight of
full tank of fuel

both W_f and W_fb are variables, but


their sum is constant.

The sum of W_f and W_fb gives the weight of the full tank of fuel. At the
beginning of the flight W_fb is zero and at the end of the flight when the aircraft
runs out of fuel W_f becomes zero.
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Above definitions of c and c_t assume that fuel consumption rate linearly
depends on engine power for piston engines and engine thrust for jet engines.
For piston engines W_fb_dot
versus Power graph is a line with
slope equal to c.
For jet engines W_fb_dot versus
Thrust graph is a line with slope
equal to c_t.
For propeller aircraft driven
by piston (reciprocating)
engines
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For jet aircraft

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as long as
engine produces
power (or thrust)

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For propeller aircraft:

In the above integration the right hand side integral is taken from the initial full
weight (W_0) to empty weight (W_1). In this case the left hand side gives the
total time spent while the full tank of fuel is consumed, which is defined as the
endurance.

The above equation gives the endurance for any flight condition. We didn't
make any assumptions to get to this equation. Starting from takeoff, during
climb, different steady flight phases, descend, etc. power of the engine will be
changing. If you insert the varying P in to above equation you can compute the
endurance.
Let's consider an aircraft taking off, cruising for a certain amount of time and
then lands. Assume that the aircraft burns all its fuel during this flight.

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To compute the endurance you need to plot 1/cP as a function of weight and
then calculate the area under that curve between W_1 and W_0.

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Again the above equation for range is valid for any flight condition. Note that
during a flight speed may be changing, therefore in general V_infinity in the
above equation is a variable.

Actual range and endurance can be computed by integration of the two


equations given. Note that the above shown curves are not typical curves for
1/cP and V/cP. Shapes of the curves may be very different depending on the
flight.
Simpler equtions may be obtained for specific phases of flight. Steady level
flight (cruising) is the easiest but probably the most important phase of flight.
So let's take a look at the simplified equations for cruising flight:
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very reasonable assumptions for cruising


flight.

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To quickly conclude what maximizes range and endurance for propeller and jet aircraft we can consider the SFC
definitions.
For maximum endurance, fuel consumption per unit time has to be minimum.
For maximum range, fuel consumption per unit distance has to be minimum.

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We will study the "sustained"


level turn maneuver.
Sustained means that the
aircraft turns in a steady
manner. Speed and altitude
of the aircraft do not change
during the turn.

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One way to change the direction of an aircraft is to turn it like a car. That
means the wings of the aircraft stay parallel to the ground and the aircraft
turns with pure yawing with roll angle equal to zero.

This turn maneuver is called "skid-to-turn" maneuver and most missiles turn
this way. But for aircraft this turn maneuver is not preferred because the
people on board feel a lateral force due to centrifugal acceleration.
Cars have to follow the road surface and drivers cannot change the roll angle
during a turn. This is not the case for aircraft. Pilots can control the roll angle.
By adjusting the roll angle appropriately the pilot can assure that
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the passengers do not feel any lateral forces.


phi is the roll angle. If you set the roll (bank)
angle such that the aircraft y axis becomes
perpendicular to the total acceleration vector,
then people sitting in the aircraft will feel no
lateral acceleration (forces).
This is the total acceleration vector. Aircraft's
bank angle is set such that its z axis becomes
parallel to the acceleration vector, and y axis
becomes perpendicular to that.
This type of turn where the bank angle is set perfectly to ensure no lateral
acceleration occurs is called a "coordinated turn". Changing the bank angle
for a turning maneuver is called "bank-to-turn" maneuver. It is harder to
perform this manuever (compared to skid-to-turn maneuver) since the pilot has
to control the ailerons, elevator, rudder, and throttle simultaneously and that is
why most missile autopilots perform skid-to-turn maneuvers.

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When we sit straight we only feel the gravitational acceleration, which gives
our weight. But while turning we feel a larger acceleration, which is the vector
of gravitational acceleration and centrifugal acceleration, given by:

Let's take a look at the total acceleration felt by the pilot during a
coordinated turn maneuver:

During a sustained level turn maneuver with a load factor n, people on board
experience a net acceleration that is n times the gravitational acceleration g.

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During a sustained level turn maneuver load factor is determined by the bank
angle only. If the bank angle is large that means load factor is large as well.

Example: F-16 doing a level turn maneuver:

Example: F-18 doing a level turn maneuver:

Radius of the turn:

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Turning performance of an aircraft depends on the flight speed and load factor.
An aircraft that can make faster and tighter turns is said to be highly
maneuverable. So for better maneuverability you need a large load factor.
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In order to design a highly maneuverable aircraft all you need to do is to


make sure that your aircraft can have high load factors. Now the question
becomes how is the load factor related to the design of the aircraft? In other
words how should you design the aircraft such that it can handle high load
factors? We can answer this question by looking at the load factor definition:

For a high load factor aircraft, the aircraft should be capable of creating very
large lift forces. For a 9 g turn, lift should be equal to 9 times the weight. This
puts a constraint on aerodynamics.

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But we know that C_L cannot be greater than C_Lmax, otherwise the
aircraft stalls. For a given C_Lmax the maximum load factor an aircraft
can have is given by:

So for an aircraft fliying at a certain speed V, the maximum load factor it


can have is limited aerodynamically by the above equation. If you plot the
above equation as a function of V you get:

Let's see what is the maximum load factor an aircraft can have. There are different
limiting factors. Let's consider the aerodynamics first.

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Let's study the turning performance of the C-130 aircraft. Data used are taken
from the a953109.pdf file and the internet. We have
W0 = 5.5315e+005
S = 162.1;
rho = 1.225;

At any speed the maximum lift force is achieved with the maximum lift coefficient.

If you compute n_max at various speeds you get

Assume that a fully loaded (W=W0) C-130 is flying with a clean wing (no flaps) at a
speed of 100 m/s. What is highest load factor the aircraft can achieve?

Stall speed can be found from

Maximum speed of the aircraft at sea level with W=W0 can be found from the power
curve.
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Above plot shows us that the C-130 aircraft is capable of achieving a load factor
of up to 13 with flaps fully extended aerodynamically.

Aerodynamically the aircraft is


capable of achieving a load
factor of 8.5 while flying at
maximum speed.
Next let's find out if the aircraft
can perform a sustained level
turn maneuver with a load factor
of 7 at a speed of 156 m/s.
We need to check if the engines
can provide sufficient power to
balance the required power
during that maneuver.

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Obviously the aircraft cannot sustain a turn under these conditions because it doesn't
have enough power to maintain the speed. Then the question is what is the
maximum load factor it can sustain??? For the maximum sustainable maneuver at
V=156 m/s, required power should be equal to the maximum available power. For
that the drag coefficient must be less than 0.23. What should CD be?

From the drag polar, CL value corresponding to CD=0.029 is approximately 0.42.


Therefore the maximum sustainable load factor is the one corresponding to this CL

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But aerodynamic limit is not the only limiting factor. At such hight lift forces there
will be very large drag forces as well. If you need to sustain the maneuver your
engines should give you enough thrust force. Let's calculate the thrust required
(or power required) at the maximum load factor:

Therefore even though C-130 can aerodynamically generate a load factor 7, its
engines are far from giving the necessary power to sustain a level turn at that
speed and load factor. In this case propulsive limit is much lower than the
aerodynamic limit.
So the next question is what is the maximum load factor then engines will allow for
a sustained maneuver? Consider the V=156 m/s speed again. The maximum
power is

From the drag polar, the CL value corresponding to CD=0.0291 is 0.44. The lift force at
that speed and CL value is

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You can calculate the maximum load factor limited by the engine as follows:
Choose a flight speed
Running at full throttle find the maximum thrust at that speed.
Using T=D, find the maximum C_D
Find the C_L value corresponding to the C_D you found above. If you are using
the drag polar equation you can solve it from there. If you are using the drag
polar curve you read the C_L value from the curve.
Find the lift force corresponding to the C_L value you found above.
Find n_max_limited by the engines from L/W. For C-130 you get the following
curves:

In addition to aerodynamic and propulsive limit, you also need to consider the
structural limit. For C-130 maximum load factor with maximum weight is given as
2. That means even if aerodynamic and porpulsive limitations let you have a
large load factor, you need to take structural limit into account as well, otherwise
the wings will be damaged or even they will be broken as we saw in the videos.

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According to this
graph the maximum
load factor for C-130
limited by the
aerodynamics is less
than 6 with no flaps.
If the flaps are
extended fully n_max
increases to about 9.

This plot shows the aerodynamic limit for load factor. There are other factors that limit n_max. In other words you
cannot make a highly maneuverable aircraft by just making C_Lmax large. At large C_L values C_D becomes
large as well. So to sustain a maneuver the engines should be powerful enough to overcome aerodynamic drag.
So the maximum power the engines can provide is another limiting factor.

So let's assume that we are trying to modify C-130 to make it a 9g aircraft.


Aerodynamically we know that we can get ~9g at max speed with full flaps. Let's
see if the engines are powerful enough to sustain a 9g maneuver at that speed.
We need to compute P_R at that condition and see if the engine can provide
that.
From the a953109.pdf document, C_D corresponding to C_Lmax for full flaps is
approximately 0.26. P_R at that condition is then

Above calculations show that the power required to sustain a 9g maneuver at


164.4 m/s speed is approximately 10 times the maximum power engines can
provide. This means to make C-130 a 9g aircraft we need 40 of these engines!!!

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At this point the


C-130 is flying
at its
aerodynamic
and propulsive
limit. That
means C_L =
C_Lmax and
P_R = P_Amax

At speeds less than


V* the maximum load
factor is limited by
C_Lmax.

At speeds greater than


V* the maximum load
factor is limited by the
engines.

The red curve for propulsion limit starts at high speed values. For every point on the red curve there are
corresponding C_L and C_D values. If you want to extend the red curve to lower speed values, C_L values required
for those points will be outside the drag polar curve. That's why the red curve does not extend to low speed values.

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So far we saw that to make C-130 a 9g aircraft we need to extend the flaps fully
and make the engines 10 times more powerful. Is this enough? Can a C-130
make 9g maneuvers by just having more powerful engines? The answer is no.
That's because during a 9g maneuver the lift force will be 9 times the weight of
the aircraft. But the wings are designed for the originial n_max of ~2.25 g. That
means to make C-130 a 9g aircraft you need to make the wings approximately 4
times stronger. But this will change the overall weight and you need to start from
the beginning again.

Typical V-n diagram, showing the maximum load factor an aircraft can get at different speeds, also called the
flight envelope.

margin of safety

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Parabolic Flight:

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