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Design and demonstration of a leading edge actuation system, through topology optimisation

: Mauchle, A.R.; Breuker, R. de; Thuwis, G.A.A.; Simpson, J.C.

Qiu, J.; Tzou, H.-S.:
23rd International Conference on Adaptive Structures and Technologies (ICAST 2012). Proceedings : Nanjing, China, 11 - 13 October 2012
Red Hook, NY: Curran, 2012
ISBN: 978-1-62993-185-2
International Conference on Adaptive Structures and Technologies (ICAST) <23, 2012, Nanjing>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer IBP ()

The objective of the research presented in this paper was to investigate the design of a droop nose configuration for a regional airliner by using numerical aeroelastic methods. These toolsets were developed at the Delft University of Technology (DUT) and made the study possible between the interaction of the input actuation load, aerodynamic loading and the final target deformation profile of the morphing leading edge high-lift system. An appropriate characterisation of the deformation behaviour of a morphing leading edge high-lift system with respect to the actuation load input would provide valuable information for future design of such morphing leading edge high-lift devices and the definition of their actuation force input. This brings about future possibilities to develop seamless morphing leading edge technology for regional airliners. A set of static discrete forces was applied to the model to represent the aerodynamic loads acting on the leading edge skin. The conceptual design of the layout of the prototype leading edge was done using an actuation topology optimisation routine embedded in DUT aeroelastic toolset. Interpretation of the actuation topology optimisation results was required to define the final actuation system layout for the morphing leading edge high-lift system. The initial stages of the research show positive results in the target deformation. They show a claim-shell motion that maintains a zero stretching behaviour in the skin. Additional studies were conducted in assessing the deflection of the skin in the primary and secondary load conditions. The conclusion yielded a need to design additional actuation members, to control and lock the motion of the actuation system. This was presented by means of four-bar mechanisms. The design, production and tests of the actuation system demonstrator are presented in this work.