3359. Weight and Balance Considerations for Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicles


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California Polytechnic State University: 3359. Weight and Balance Considerations for Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicles. 2005.



Sentinel Aerospace presents Cavalier, a ship-based morphing unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV), in response to the 2004 ? 2005 American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Graduate Team Aircraft Design Competition. Cavalier uses a combination of speed, stealth, and maneuverability to perform the suppression of enemy air defenses (SEAD) mission. The profile includes a 200 nautical mile cruise segment and a four hour loiter followed by a 0.757 Mach dash to the target area where four AGM-88 HARM missiles are to be expended, and a 5 g maneuver to egress the threat area. The alternate mission, which is also required, involves the same mission profile, but without engaging the enemy target. Cavalier effectively uses several forms of morphing on the wing. As the plane is to takeoff and land on LHA ships, a span limitation of 48 feet exists. Therefore, Cavalier uses shape memory alloy-actuated folding wingtips that extend after takeoff, and provide an additional 8.2 feet of span on each wing. Pivoting leading edge strakes are used to adjust planform area, mean sweep and thickness-to-chord for the different flight conditions. Hinge-less ailerons, based on the Smart Wing Program, will be employed to provide roll control while improving the radar cross-section. During the course of this investigation, it was realized that substantial savings could be achieved if morphing was applied to the propulsion system as well. The use of technology derived from the Smart Aircraft and Marine ProjectS demonstratiON (SAMPSON) was found to reduce the installation losses, in turn improving specific fuel consumption and net thrust. Additional morphing system concepts will be discussed that could yield a significant increase in performance. However, research and technology projects are still being conducted to determine a reasonable figure for benefits and penalties from these systems. As such, credit for these concepts has not been applied to the current configuration.


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