Next-generation flight control actuation technology will be based on “more electric” concepts to ensure benefits in terms of efficiency, weight and maintenance. This paper is concerned with the design of an un-shafted distributed servo-electromechanical actuation system, suited for morphing trailing edge wings of large commercial aircraft. It aims at producing small wing camber variations in the range between -5° and +5° in cruise, to enable aerodynamic efficiency improvements. The deployment kinematics is based on multiple “direct-drive” actuation, each made of light-weight compact lever mechanisms, rigidly connected to compliant ribs and sustained by load-bearing motors. Navier-Stokes computations are performed to estimate the pressure distribution over the interested wing region and the resulting hinge moments. These transfer to the primary structure via the driving mechanism. An electro-mechanical Matlab/Simulink model of the distributed actuation architecture is developed and used as a design tool, to preliminary evaluate the complete system performance. Implementing a multi-shaft strategy, each actuator is sized for the torque acting on the respective adaptive rib, following the effect of both the aerodynamic pressure and the morphing skin stiffness. Elastic trailing edge rotations and power needs are evaluated in operative conditions. Focus is finally given to the key challenges of the proposed concept: targeting quantifiable performance improvements while being compliant to the demanding requirements in terms of reliability and safety.
I. Dimino, G. Diodati, A. Concilio, A. Volovick, and L. Zivan, "Distributed electromechanical actuation system design for a morphing trailing edge wing," Proc. SPIE 9801, Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies 2016, 980108 (Presented at SPIE Smart Structures and Materials + Nondestructive Evaluation and Health Monitoring: March 21, 2016; Published: 16 April 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2219223.
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