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Proceedings Paper

Design, development, and testing of a solid state adaptive rotor
Author(s): Ronald M. Barrett; Phillip Frye; Michael Schliesman
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Paper Abstract

This study outlines the design principles, analytical models and testing procedures for a new type of solid state adaptive rotor (SSAR) which was specifically intended for use in mini and micro-unmanned aerial rotorcraft ((mu) UAR). This new SSAR employed a pair of torque-plates which were structurally integrated at the helicopter hub and connected to a two-bladed rotor assembly of 22' (55.9 cm) diameter. These plates were constructed from symmetrically oriented directionally attached piezoelectric actuator elements which were bonded to an aluminum substrate. As the electrical field was changed across the elements, the twist of the plate changed accordingly. Because this new arrangement may be controlled as a function of azimuth, both collective and cyclic commands were available. Unlike earlier designs, this new arrangement used a Hiller servopaddle configuration to achieve flight control. Analytical modeling of the torque- plate performance was accomplished through laminated plate theory and showed good correlation between theory and experiment. Rotor-dynamic models included propeller and aerodynamic moments. Rotor testing showed servopaddle deflection levels in excess of +/- 5.8 degree(s) at rates up to 2.5/rev. Not only is this system effective in achieving flight control, but it is also very simple and lightweight. Indeed, the torque-late, electrical leads and contacts weight 40% less, have a much cleaner hub and replace more than 94 individual components which are found on the conventional flight control system.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 April 1998
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 3321, 1996 Symposium on Smart Materials, Structures, and MEMS, (16 April 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.305578
Show Author Affiliations
Ronald M. Barrett, Auburn Univ. (United States)
Phillip Frye, Auburn Univ. (United States)
Michael Schliesman, Auburn Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3321:
1996 Symposium on Smart Materials, Structures, and MEMS
Vasu K. Aatre; Vijay K. Varadan; Vasundara V. Varadan, Editor(s)

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