Posts Tagged 'Aircraft'

Sonic Boom Analysis and its Mitigation

Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering
Fall 2012 Seminar Series
Thursday, September 20   4-5 PM in MEC 341
University of Virginia

Sriram Rallabhandi, Ph.D.,
Senior Research Engineer,
National Institute of Aerospace,
Resident at:
Aeronautics System Analysis Branch,
NASA Langley Research Center


This talk focuses on the recent advances in supersonic aircraft design methodology for the purpose of mitigating the adverse effects of sonic booms generated during supersonic flight. The fundamental aspects of sonic boom prediction are briefly described, followed by advanced sonic boom prediction techniques. Several approaches of aircraft design that attempt to mitigate the sonic boom will be addressed.

Host: Bob Lindberg (

To meet with the speaker: Lori Mohr Pedersen (


Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering

Fall 2012 Seminar Series

Thursday, September 13 4-5 pm in MEC – 341

University of Virginia


Professor Riti Singh

Department of Power and Propulsion

Cranfield University, UK

The confluence of the growth of civil aviation and the need to limit its impact on climate change is set to bring the aerospace industry to its tryst with destiny. Anticipated large improvements in propulsion systems, airframes and operations are likely to be offset by market growth, not least by increasing demands from the BRIC economies. This presentation will focus on propulsion system developments within civil aviation. A drive to improve thermal and propulsive efficiencies still promises significant improvements. Bio‐mix ‘drop‐in’ fuels are likely in the next 20 years and offer further improvements. In the longer term, we are likely to see a shift to distributed propulsion to further improve both propulsive efficiency and air frame performance. This may result in a few very high‐efficiency generators, to drive a large number of small electric fans. Such a scenario opens up the possibility of significant advances with the ability to have ‘clean air frames’. In the long term, the growth of civil aviation may have to be curtailed, in spite of growing market demand. A way forward could be the combination of hydrogen and other technologies, including the intriguing possibility of an aircraft being able to produce global warming or cooling at will, perhaps allowing mankind to control the earth’s temperature by the use of civil aviation.

 Professor Riti Singh

Riti Singh is Professor Emeritus of Cranfield University. He leads the Gas Turbine Engineering & Technology Group within the Department of Power and Propulsion and is Director of the Rolls‐Royce University Technology Centre in Performance Engineering. He has given many plenary/keynote speeches. He holds numerous patents, and has published widely. His research has been strongly supported by industry, the European Union and EPSRC. Professor Singh has an interest in novel cycles for power and propulsion, particularly in the context of the environment. He has received many accolades during the course of his career, the most recent being ASME’s International Gas Turbine Institute’s Annual International Aircraft Engine Technology Award for 2010, presented to one individual each year for sustained, innovative personal contribution to the field. Professor Singh is a past chairman of the Aerospace Division and continues his involvement s a board member of this and the International Society of Air Breathing Engines. (ISABE).Professor Singh has consulted for over 40 organisations, including gas turbine manufacturers.

Out of Many, One

Autonomous Aircraft Combine To Increase Stability, Power.

Popular Science (6/8, Dillow) reports, “Researchers at the ETH Zurich recognize that different tasks call for different aircraft, and with that in mind they’ve designed the Distributed Flight Array (DFA), a flying platform consisting of multiple small autonomous single rotor aircraft that can dock with one another to create a larger, more powerful aircraft.” Each “fixed [propeller] aircraft” that makes up the DFA has “its own sensors and flight control system,” and can “fly somewhat erratically.” However, “joined together they become a larger sensor-based flight platform, capable of maintaining level flight by rapidly sharing data between them.” The array “is a proof of concept” at this point, but “such a scheme could have a variety of applications, not least of which is the relatively straightforward yet sometimes difficult task of picking stuff up.”

Reposted from the June 8, 2010 ASEE First Bell

A Fly on the Wall

Fixed-Wing Drone Lands Vertically On Walls.

Popular Science (4/27, Hsu) reports that researchers at Stanford University’s Biomimetics Laboratory have developed “a fixed-wing, non-transforming drone” that can land vertically on walls. “Their drone approaches the wall at full speed,” and “then pitches sharply upward to angle its belly toward the wall and slows its approach speed to just under 7 mph.” The drone uses carbon-fiber and balsa landing legs “tipped with steel spines” in order to make a vertical landing. “The researchers still face engineering challenges such as tuning the suspension system so that the drone doesn’t simply rebound upon landing approach.” They will be presenting “an update on their work at next month’s 2010 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation in Anchorage, Alaska.”

Reposted from the April 27, 2010 ASEE First Bell

Aircraft Structures

The Knovel Library contains hundreds of full-text online resources in a wide variety of science and engineering disciplines, as well as innovative research and analysis tools for using them. Here is one of the latest items to appear in the Knovel Library:

Composite Materials for Aircraft Structures (2nd Edition)
Publisher: AIAA
Description: The 2nd edition of this best-selling book provides an introduction to virtually all aspects of the technology of composite materials as used in aeronautical design and structure.  Since the first edition of this textbook in 1986, the use of high-performance polymer-matrix fiber composites in aircraft structures has grown steadily, although not as dramatically as predicted at that time.  The text discusses important differences in the technology of composites from that of metals–intrinsic substantive differences and their implications for manufacturing processes, structural design procedures, and in-service performance of the materials, particularly regarding the cause and nature of damage that may be sustained.

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