Nonplanar wing configurations promise a significant improvement of aerodynamic efficiency and are therefore currently investigated for future aircraft configurations. A reliable mass prediction for a new wing configuration is of great importance in preliminary aircraft design in order to enable a holistic assessment of potential benefits and drawbacks.
In this thesis a generic numerical modeling approach for arbitrary unconventional wing configurations is developed and a simulation tool for their evaluation and mass prediction is implemented. The wingbox is modeled with a nonlinear finite element beam which is coupled to different low-fidelity aerodynamic methods obtaining a quasi-static aeroelastic model that considers the redistribution of aerodynamic forces due to deformation.
For the preliminary design of the wingbox various critical loading conditions according to the Federal Aviation Regulations are taken into account. The simulation tool is validated for a range of existing aircraft types. Additionally, two unconventional configurations, the C-wing and the box-wing, are analyzed. The outlook provides suggestions for extensions and further development of the simulation tool as well as possible model refinements.
Author: Seywald, Klaus