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Proceedings Paper

Active vibration-suppression systems applied to twin-tail buffeting
Author(s): Mark A. Hopkins; Douglas A. Henderson; Robert W. Moses; Thomas G. Ryall; David G. Zimcik; Ronald L. Spangler
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Paper Abstract

Buffeting is an aeroelastic phenomenon that plagues high performance aircraft, especially those with twin vertical tails. Unsteady cortices emanate form wing/fuselage leading edge extensions when these aircraft maneuver at high angles of attack. These aircraft are designed such that the vortices shed while maneuvering at high angels of attack and improve the lift-to-drag ratio of the aircraft. With proper placement and sizing of the vertical tails, this improvement may be maintained without adverse effects to the tails. However, there are tail locations and angels of attack where these vortices burst and immerse the vertical tails in their wake inducing severe structural vibrations. The resulting buffet loads and severe vertical tail response because an airframe life and maintenance concern as life cycle costs increased. Several passive methods have been investigated to reduce the buffeting of these vertical tails with limited success. As demonstrated through analyses, wind-tunnel investigations, and full-scale ground tests, active control system offer a promising solution to alleviate buffet induced strain and increase the fatigue life of vertical tails. A collaborative research project including the US, Canada, and Australia is in place to demonstrate active buffet load alleviation systems on military aircraft. The present paper provides details on this collaborative project and other research efforts to reduce the buffeting response of vertical tails in fighter aircraft.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 June 1998
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 3326, Smart Structures and Materials 1998: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies, (16 June 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.310663
Show Author Affiliations
Mark A. Hopkins, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Douglas A. Henderson, Air Force Research Lab. (United States)
Robert W. Moses, NASA Langley Research Ctr. (United States)
Thomas G. Ryall, Defence Science and Technology Organization (Australia)
David G. Zimcik, National Research Council of Canada (Canada)
Ronald L. Spangler, Active Control eXperts, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3326:
Smart Structures and Materials 1998: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies
Janet M. Sater, Editor(s)

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