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Abstract

This paper describes assumptions, goals, methods, results and conclusions related to fuel tank arrangement of a flying wing passenger airplane configuration. A short overview of various fuel tank systems in use today of different types of aircraft is treated as a starting point for designing a fuel tank system to be used on very large passenger airplanes. These systems may be used to move fuel around the aircraft to keep the centre of gravity within acceptable limits, to maintain pitch and lateral balance and stability. With increasing aircraft speed, the centre of lift moves aft, and for trimming the elevator or trimmer must be used thereby increasing aircraft drag. To avoid this, the centre of gravity can be shifted by pumping fuel from forward to aft tanks. The lesson learnt from this is applied to minimise trim drag by moving the fuel along the airplane. Such a task can be done within coming days if we know the minimum drag versus CG position and weight value. The main part of the paper is devoted to wing bending moment distribution. A number of arrangements of fuel in airplane tanks are investigated and a scenario of refuelling – minimising the root bending moments – is presented. These results were obtained under the assumption that aircraft is in long range flight (14 hours), CL is constant and equal to 0.279, Specific Fuel Consumption is also constant and that overall fuel consumption is equal to 20 tons per 1 hour. It was found that the average stress level in wing structure is lower if refuelling starts from fuel tanks located closer to longitudinal plane of symmetry. It can influence the rate of fatigue.
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Abstract

This paper describes a design process of HALE PW-114 sensor-craft, developed for high altitude (20 km) long endurance (40 h) surveillance missions. Designed as a blended wing (BW) configuration, to be made of metal and composite materials. Wing control surfaces provide longitudinal balance. Fin in the rear fuselage section together with wingtips provide directional stability. Airplane is equipped with retractable landing gear with controlled front leg that allows operations from conventional airfields. According to the initial requirements it is twin engine configuration, typical payload consists of electro-optical/infra-red FLIR, big SAR (synthetic aperture radar) and SATCOM antenna required for the longest range. Tailless architecture was based on both Horten and Northrop design experience. Global Hawk was considered as a reference point – it was assumed that BW design has to possess efficiency, relative payload and other characteristics at least the same or even better than that of Global Hawk. FLIR, SAR and SATCOM containers were optimised for best visibility. All payload systems are put into separate modular containers of easy access and quickly to exchange, so this architecture can be consider as a „modular”. An optimisation process started immediately when the so-called “zero configuration”, called PW-111 was ready. It was designed in the canard configuration. A canard was abandoned in HALE PW-113. Instead, new, larger outer wing was designed with smaller taper ratio. New configuration analysis revealed satisfactory longitudinal stability. Calculations suggested better lateral qualities for negative dihedral. These modifications, leading to aerodynamic improvement, gave HALE PW-114 as a result. The design process was an interdisciplinary approach, and included a selection of thick laminar wing section, aerodynamic optimisation of swept wing, stability analysis, weight balance, structural and flutter analysis, many on-board redundant systems, reliability and maintability analysis, safety improvement, cost and performance optimisation. Presented paper focuses mainly on aerodynamics, wing design, longitudinal control and safety issues. This activity is supported by European Union within V FR, in the area Aeronautics and Space.
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