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Proceedings Paper

Finite element model correlation of a composite UAV wing using modal frequencies
Author(s): Joseph A. Oliver; John B. Kosmatka; François M. Hemez; Charles R. Farrar
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Paper Abstract

The current work details the implementation of a meta-model based correlation technique on a composite UAV wing test piece and associated finite element (FE) model. This method involves training polynomial models to emulate the FE input-output behavior and then using numerical optimization to produce a set of correlated parameters which can be returned to the FE model. After discussions about the practical implementation, the technique is validated on a composite plate structure and then applied to the UAV wing structure, where it is furthermore compared to a more traditional Newton-Raphson technique which iteratively uses first-order Taylor-series sensitivity. The experimental testpiece wing comprises two graphite/epoxy prepreg and Nomex honeycomb co-cured skins and two prepreg spars bonded together in a secondary process. MSC.Nastran FE models of the four structural components are correlated independently, using modal frequencies as correlation features, before being joined together into the assembled structure and compared to experimentally measured frequencies from the assembled wing in a cantilever configuration. Results show that significant improvements can be made to the assembled model fidelity, with the meta-model procedure producing slightly superior results to Newton-Raphson iteration. Final evaluation of component correlation using the assembled wing comparison showed worse results for each correlation technique, with the meta-model technique worse overall. This can be most likely be attributed to difficultly in correlating the open-section spars; however, there is also some question about non-unique update variable combinations in the current configuration, which lead correlation away from physically probably values.

Paper Details

Date Published: 11 April 2007
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 6532, Health Monitoring of Structural and Biological Systems 2007, 653218 (11 April 2007); doi: 10.1117/12.717456
Show Author Affiliations
Joseph A. Oliver, Univ. of California, San Diego (United States)
John B. Kosmatka, Univ. of California, San Diego (United States)
François M. Hemez, Los Alamos National Lab. (United States)
Charles R. Farrar, Los Alamos National Lab. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6532:
Health Monitoring of Structural and Biological Systems 2007
Tribikram Kundu, Editor(s)

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