Intelligent Control for Morphing Aircraft

Award Information
Agency:
Department of Defense
Branch
Air Force
Amount:
$99,679.00
Award Year:
2005
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
FA8650-05-M-3553
Agency Tracking Number:
F051-244-2502
Solicitation Year:
2005
Solicitation Topic Code:
AF05-244
Solicitation Number:
2005.1
Small Business Information
BARRON ASSOC., INC.
1410 Sachem Place, Suite 202, Charlottesville, VA, 22901
Hubzone Owned:
N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
120839477
Principal Investigator:
Jeffrey Monaco
Senior Research Scientist
(434) 973-1215
monaco@barron-associates.com
Business Contact:
B. Parker, Jr.
Chairman
(434) 973-1215
barron@barron-associates.com
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
A morphing aircraft tailors its configuration to optimize performance at very dissimilar flight conditions. To lay the foundation for a truly multi-role aircraft, research efforts are currently focusing on technologies that enable substantial changes to the wing configuration, including 200 percent aspect-ratio, 50 percent surface-area, 5 deg. wing-twist, and 20 deg. wing-sweep variations. Despite significant strides to develop wing/actuation systems that achieve such configuration changes, much work remains to effectively control these systems. The proposed Phase I research will address two significant control challenges associated with advanced morphing wing designs. First, how does one control the aircraft-wing shape itself using multiple, innovative effectors in a dynamic environment characterized by variable loads? Second, how does one integrate wing control and flight control to ensure aircraft stability during wing-state transitions? In Phase I, Barron Associates, NextGen Aeronautics, and Dr. Dan Inman of VT will develop morphing-wing and aircraft models suitable for on-line interrogation in a control law. The team will emphasize the design of real-time control architecture - made up of two integrated nonlinear controllers that exploit these models - to accomplish the stated control objectives. This research sets the stage for Phase II hardware-in-the-loop, wind-tunnel, and (possibly) flight tests of the morphing-aircraft controllers.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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