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Maneuvering Environment for Tiltwing Aircraft with Distributed Electric Propulsion

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX17CL61P
Agency Tracking Number: 170007
Amount: $124,994.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: T15.01
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: 2017
Award Year: 2017
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2017-06-09
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2018-06-08
Small Business Information
1031 E. Moorhead Cr.
Boulder, CO 80305-6109
United States
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 John Hauser
 Associate Professor
 (303) 492-6496
Business Contact
 Jacob Cook
Title: Business Owner
Phone: (970) 376-7775
Research Institution
 University of Colorado - Office of Contracts and Grants
 Jessica Rowell
3100 Marine Street Rm 479
Boulder, CO 80303-1058
United States

 (303) 735-6299
 Domestic Nonprofit Research Organization

The tiltwing class of aircraft consists of vehicles with the ability to rotate the wing and propulsion system as a unit a full 90 degrees from the standard fixed wing configuration to one in which the wing and thrust axis
become perpendicular to the body axis. This thrust vectoring capability allows the aircraft to utilize thrust borne flight for vertical takeoff and landing as well as the conventional configuration for more efficient lift
borne flight operations. The pitching moment is typically controlled by one or more propellers that is/are either mounted statically to the tail (Canadair CL-84) or attached to an articulated tail wing plane (NASA
GL-10). In contrast to a tiltrotor, the lifting and control surfaces of a tiltwing are immersed in the slipstream of the attached propellors, potentially delaying the onset of stall during transitions and also allowing, for example, the ailerons to provide some yaw control in the hover configuration.

Distributed Electric Propulsion (DEP) is a natural enhancement for tiltwing aircraft, where additional thrust can be used in vertical take-off and landing (and transition) operations and then scaled back (and tucked away) for conventional flight operations. The use of a centralized electric power plant for DEP leads to an increased payload capacity without large sacrifices in endurance and efficiency, all while maintaining its VTOL capabilities.

Our goal is the development of a flight maneuvering system for distributed electric propulsion, toward this end we propose the development of model analysis and design tools and techniques focused in particular on the transition maneuvers.

The proposed innovation will facilitate the development of analytical tools and methods with which to assess the tiltwing vehicles using DEP; this includes aerodynamic force and moment models for transition,
dynamic simulations for trajectory exploration, and tools for trajectory optimization.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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