A multi-disciplinary conceptual design methodology for assessing control authority on a hybrid wing body configuration
Garmendia, Daniel Charles
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The primary research objective was to develop a methodology to support conceptual design of the Hybrid Wing Body (HWB) configuration. The absence of a horizontal tail imposes new stability and control requirements on the planform, and therefore requiring greater emphasis on control authority assessment than is typical for conceptual design. This required investigations into three primary areas of research. The first was to develop a method for designing an appropriate amount of redundancy. This was motivated widely varying numbers of trailing edge elevons in the HWB literature, and inadequate explanations for these early design decisions. The method identifies stakeholders, metrics of interest, and synthesizes these metrics using the Breguet range equation for system level comparison of control surface layouts. The second area of research was the development trim analysis methods that could accommodate redundant control surfaces, for which conventional methods performed poorly. A new measure of control authority was developed for vehicles with redundant controls. This is accomplished using concepts from the control allocation literature such as the attainable moment subset and the direct allocation method. The result is a continuous measure of remaining control authority suitable for use during HWB sizing and optimization. The final research area integrated performance and control authority to create a HWB sizing environment, and investigations into how to use it for design space exploration and vehicle optimization complete the methodology. The Monte Carlo Simulation method is used to map the design space, identify good designs for optimization, and to develop design heuristics. Finally, HWB optimization experiments were performed to discover best practices for conceptual design.