Static aeroelastic approach based on Vortex lattice Method and Euler-Bernoulli beam theory for structural analysis of fixed wing sUAS.

Esteban A. Valencia*, Alexander F. Ramos, Víctor H. Alulema & Darío A. Rodríguez

Escuela Politécnica Nacional, Departamento de IngenieríaMecánica, Quito, Ecuador, 17-01-259

*Corresponding Author Email: [email protected]

This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles performing in the Andean Region (3000-5000 m.a.s.l) impose different operating requirements for the structural design due to the harsh atmospheric conditions. At preliminary design stage where various configurations need to be tested, it is needed a versatile and low-cost computational method to assess the structural behaviour of Small Unmanned Aerial System (sUAS) in the aforesaid demanding operating conditions. In this regard, this work develops a static aeroelasticity method adapted for the case of sUAS, which is accurate enough to capture main trends in material performance and geometrical features. This method is based on the well-known Vortex Lattice Method for the aerodynamic force assessment and uses the Euler-Bernoulli beam theory to evaluate the static aeroelasticity of the sUAS concepts. Results were contrasted with open-access information and comparison showed that the proposed method reproduces static aeroelasticity phenomena with good accuracy. Afterwards, a study case using a sUAS concept developed in previous works was analyzed operating in the pilot zone at the Andean Region in order to evaluate wing deflections.