Tech

November 15, 2013

NASA, Boeing finish tests of 757 vertical tail with advanced technology

NASA’s Ames Research Center hosts the world’s largest wind tunnel, where testing was recently completed on a full-scale Boeing 757 vertical tail.

NASA’s Ames Research Center and NASA’s Langley Research Center, in partnership with Boeing, have completed wind tunnel testing of a full-scale Boeing 757 vertical tail model equipped with active flow control technology.

A major objective of the tests was to show active flow control can enhance the performance of a vertical tail enough to enable future designers to reduce the size of the structure for a whole family of airplanes. That could reduce the penalties related to the vertical tail that aircraft currently pay in drag and weight.

The testing, which began in early September and concluded Nov. 4, took place at the U.S. Air Force’s Arnold Engineering Development Center’s 40- by 80-foot wind tunnel at Ames in Moffett Field, Calif.

“This test campaign is a key component of NASA’s Environmentally Responsible Aviation Project,” said project manager Fay Collier. “The maturation of technologies such as active flow control, which will benefit aviation by improving fuel efficiency, reducing emissions and noise levels, is what NASA’s aeronautics research is all about. The promising results of these wind tunnel tests and the following flight demonstration in 2015 undoubtedly will have an impact on future “green” aircraft designs,” said Collier.

The flow control on the 757 vertical tail model comes from sweeping jet actuators, which are devices that essentially blow air in a sweeping motion along the span of the tail. NASA provided the actuators as part of a collaborative agreement under its Environmentally Responsible Aviation Project.

“NASA is proud to be a part of the research to advance this technology,” said Thomas Edwards, director of aeronautics at Ames. “The tests were successful and the technology is now ready to move forward to benefit the traveling public.”

The test vertical tail is an actual 757 vertical tail that came out of an aircraft bone yard in Arizona. With the help of the Boeing test and evaluation team, Advanced Technologies Inc. of Newport News, Va., modified and refurbished the tail into a wind tunnel model.

The wind tunnel tests enabled the Boeing and NASA team to observe “a wide array of flow control configurations across the whole low-speed flight envelope of the vertical tail,” said Ed Whalen, Boeing Research & Technology program manager for the testing. The team will pick the most efficient and effective flow control configuration for future flight testing “to see how it performs in the real flight environment,” Whalen said.

The flight testing will be aboard the Boeing ecoDemonstrator program 757 flight test aircraft. Boeing’s ecoDemonstrator program will focus on improving environmental performance by bringing new technologies, materials and methods to implementation faster than ever before.

The combined wind tunnel and flight tests will represent the first full-scale flight demonstration of this active flow control technology, Whalen said. “That will give us insight into how the system works, how effective and efficient it is, things that we’re not completely sure of at this point.”

Active flow control involves the manipulation of a flow field – through the addition of energy — to improve the aerodynamic performance of an aircraft structure. Active flow control can enable the design of simpler, smaller and more aerodynamically efficient structures that help reduce aircraft weight, drag, and fuel consumption.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines July 28, 2014

News: U.S. has lost track of weapons given to Afghanistan - The United States supplied almost three quarter of a million weapons to Afghanistan’s army and police since 2004, but the military cannot track where many of those arms have gone, a new report found. Bill to improve VA has $17 billion price tag - A bipartisan...
 
 

News Briefs July 28, 2014

Marines seek authorization for dolphin deaths The Marine Corps is asking for a five-year authorization from the National Marine Fisheries Service for incidental deaths of bottlenose dolphins during training exercises at a bombing and target range. The Sun Journal of New Bern, N.C., reports that Connie Barclay of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says...
 
 
Army photograph by David Vergun

Senior leaders explain Army’s drawdown plan

Army photograph by David Vergun No commander is happy when notified that a soldier from his or her command has been identified for early separation. But commanders personally notify those Soldiers and ensure participation in th...
 

 

Northrop Grumman awarded mission support services contract

The U.S. Army awarded Northrop Grumman a cost-plus-fixed-fee contract, with a potential value of $205 million, to continue providing mission logistics services in support of combat brigades training at the National Training Center in Fort Irwin, Calif. The contract covers one base year and two one-year options. Support will include the full range of mission...
 
 
Lockheed Martin photograph by Beth Groom

F-35 Rollout Marks U.S.-Australia Partnership Milestone

Lockheed Martin photograph by Beth Groom Royal Australian Air Force Air Marshal Geoff Brown delivers his remarks at the roll out ceremony for Australia’s first F-35. The official rollout of the first two F-35 Lightning II...
 
 
NASA/JPL-Caltech image

NASA’s Mars spacecraft maneuvers to prepare for close comet flyby

NASA/JPL-Caltech image This graphic depicts the orbit of comet C/2013 A1 Siding Spring as it swings around the sun in 2014. On Oct. 19, the comet will have a very close pass at Mars. Its nucleus will miss Mars by about 82,000 m...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>