On February 20, Dr. Strawn presented a highly interesting seminar on rotocraft modeling and simulation. Presentation abstract:The Department of Defense has a goal to effectively design and upgrade all its aviation systems with minimal development cost and risk. One of the biggest risk factors for new designs comes from unexpected aerodynamic and dynamic behavior of the integrated vehicle during initial flight tests. The Army is tackling this problem head-on by developing new high-fidelity modeling and simulation software to identify and remedy potential problems early in the design cycle, well before a prototype vehicle undergoes its first flight test. This talk will describe the Army’s new Helios software tool that use high-performance computers to accurately model a variety of complex and multidisciplinary problems in rotary-wing aerodynamics and structural dynamics. These same computational techniques also work for wind turbines and this talk will also show Helios simulations of wind turbines and wind farms. Finally, the talk will describe the design and implementation of a maintainable and extensible software development framework for the overall effort. About the speaker:Dr. Strawn leads the Computational Aeromechanics Technical Area for the Army’s Aviation Development Directorate in Moffett Field, Calif. This group is responsible for the development and applications of advanced computational modeling tools for rotary-wing aeromechanics. Over the past 25 years, Strawn has led the development and application of such methods for a range of Army helicopter configurations including the CH-47 Chinook, the UH-60 Black Hawk and the OH-58 Kiowa.
Dr. Rollin's group was able to secure funding from internal, Ignite and NSF (National Science Foundation) grants in order to build a nanomaterials lab on campus. The internal and Ignite grants are currently being used to build a Chemical Vapor Deposition setup that will allow the group to grow Carbon Nanotubes and Graphene, and also to use these nanomaterials for aerospace applications such as reinforcement of composites, deicing devices or high-conductivity cables for data transmission. The NSF grant was written by Aerospace Engineering professors Drs. Rollin and Sypeck and Physical Sciences professor Dr. Mathis and has allowed them to purchase a Scanning Electron Microscope (SEM) with energy dispersive X-ray (EDX) capability to do analysis of our materials. The SEM will be installed in Lehman building later this month. The new facilities will increase the current research in nanomaterials, aerospace materials and structures being conducted on campus, and will also allow us to collaborate with local companies. These will also allow more undergraduate and graduate students to participate in research projects.
On the 4th of February, grad students and faculty members from the Department of Aerospace Engineering gathered in the Materials Testing Lab of the Lehman Engineering and Technology Center to conduct a structural compression experiment on a composite panel which employs a new structural design concept developed by Boeing and NASA to meet the needs of future aerospace vehicles. The university team was joined by Field Applications Engineer, Naman Garg of Luna Innovations Inc. who provided optical-fiber sensing measurements to complement the strain gage setup instrumented by the students. The panel fabricated using the Pull-Extruded Rod Stitched Efficient Unitized Structure (PRSEUS) concept has been under development by Boeing and NASA to enable the implementation of novel aerodynamic solutions such as the hybrid wing-body (HWB) concept for the future of large transport category aircraft. However, researchers at Embry-Riddle working with the Boeing Research and Technology Group have been exploring the potential of PRSEUS as applied to current generation designs found in the general aviation industry. With Gulfstream Aerospace now interested in the effort as well, Dr. Ali Tamijani and his student, Samaksh Behl are developing computational models to investigate the benefits of PRSEUS on the wing and fuselage structure of the recently certified G650 business jet. Yesterday’s experiment led by Dr. Daewon Kim has offered preliminary results which suggest good agreement with computational predications. A lot of work still remains though, and the next couple of weeks will see students and faculty analyzing the gathered data.
The ARAPAIMA nanosatellite mission, sponsored by AFOSR/AFRL which is in development at the ERAU College of Engineering at the Daytona Beach Campus and led by Prof. Bogdan Udrea has just been selected for a free launch within NASA’s CubeSat Launch Initiative. CubeSats are a type of nanosatellites - they are only around four inches long, have a volume of about one quart and weigh about 3 pounds. The crews from over 25 states are participating in this project, but we are rooting for the home team. Good luck, ARAPAIMA!