30 March 2006 Boeing's variable geometry chevron: morphing aerospace structures for jet noise reduction
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Abstract
Boeing is applying cutting edge smart material actuators to the next generation morphing technologies for aircraft. This effort has led to the Variable Geometry Chevrons (VGC), which utilize compact, light weight, and robust shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators. These actuators morph the shape of chevrons on the trailing edge of a jet engine in order to optimize acoustic and performance objectives at multiple flight conditions. We have demonstrated a technical readiness level of 7 by successfully flight testing the VGCs on a Boeing 777-300ER with GE-115B engines. In this paper we describe the VGC design, development and performance during flight test. Autonomous operation of the VGCs, which did not require a control system or aircraft power, was demonstrated. A parametric study was conducted showing the influence of VGC configurations on shockcell generated cabin noise reduction during cruise. The VGC system provided a robust test vehicle to explore chevron configurations for community and shockcell noise reduction. Most importantly, the VGC concept demonstrated an exciting capability to optimize jet nozzle performance at multiple flight conditions.
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Frederick T. Calkins, James H. Mabe, George W. Butler, "Boeing's variable geometry chevron: morphing aerospace structures for jet noise reduction", Proc. SPIE 6171, Smart Structures and Materials 2006: Industrial and Commercial Applications of Smart Structures Technologies, 61710O (30 March 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.659664; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.659664
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