Minimum weight design of a wing

Thus, this is do-able within months not years! It should be considered a theater-wide asset and not limited to the tactical arena.

Minimum weight design of a wing

These are the decisions I make before selecting a specific airfoil: Specify desired flight characteristics airspeed envelope, aerobatic capabilities, etc. Specify the wing-loading and power loading ranges.

Be disciplined about designing to those goals. Decide on a wing planform chord sspan, taper and sweep. Determine the most appropriate airfoil family. Select a specific airfoil using whatever information you have.

An airplane with a razor thin wing should fly well, albeit very fast. I have watched several web videos of scale planes snap-rolling into terra firma. In nearly every case the plane had a high wing loading which required the aircraft to maintain a higher airspeed to remain in flight.

They know how to yank and bank an over-powered, lightweight sport model. When they step outside the realm of lightly loaded, over-powered aircraft and into the realm of heavily loaded aircraft they often find that they get into trouble fast. Aerodynamic Stalling One of the main concerns of fledgling model airplane designers is how to avoid choosing an airfoil having wicked stall characteristics.

All airfoils have a stall angle. This is the angle of the chord line of the wing to the direction of flight. When this angle is at or beyond the stall angle the air breaks away from the wing and the wing stops producing lift.

The leading edge radius takes the lead role in stall characteristics. A sharp small radius leading edge typically has a shallow stall angle. That means it will stall sooner than a blunt leading edge.

There are other factors as well, but they become too technical and less practical. Just know that if you want your plane to have gentle stall characteristics you should use a larger radius leading edge.

The smaller the radius you use the more you risk having a plane that will stall suddenly and sharply. A tip stall occurs when a wing tip stalls before the wing root. In most cases this causes the aircraft to roll over. There are several ways to avoid or delay tip stalls. Build the wing with washout.

Washout simply means the wing is built with a twist so that the wing tips are at a lower angle of incidence than the wing root. Washout also limits aerobatic capabilities. Sand the leading edge such that it becomes more blunt toward the tip.

Avoid high aspect ratio wings having a high taper ratio. Taper ratio is the length of the tip chord divided by the length of the root chord. Aspect ratio is the wing span divided by average wing chord.

High aspect ratio wings, such as sailplanes, with high taper ratios tend to be more prone to tip stalls than low aspect ratio wings, such as deltas. Some CAP aerobatic planes tend to tip stall easily due to the taper ratio and sharp leading edge. If the plane is to be a precision aerobat then a symmetrical airfoil is most appropriate because it flies the same in any given attitude.

If the plane is to fly slowly or carry a load but is not intended to do aerobatics then a flat-bottom or under-cambered airfoil should be considered.

Some airfoils are called "modified flat bottom. Any airfoil that is not symmetrical is a cambered airfoil.

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The terms "flat-bottom" and "semi-symmetrical" are not used by the aerospace industry and they probably laugh at us when they hear us use those terms. Symmetrical Airfoils Use for aerobatic airplanes - particularly monoplanes. A design intended to be aerobatic should always have symmetrical flight surfaces wing, horizontal stabilizer and vertical stabilizer.

Minimum weight design of a wing

Semi-Symmetrical Airfoils Use for secondary trainerssailplanes and sport aerobatic biplanes. If the biplane is intended to do precision aerobatics then a fully symmetrical airfoil should be used. Secondary trainer manufacturers make a big deal out of semi-symmetrical airfoils but they are over-rated.The first Horten wing (a glider as were many of their designs), flew in and their devotion to the design carried them on even after the war.

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