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Project ID: 270586
Financiado con arreglo a: FP7-JTI
País: Italy


Project Context and Objectives:

The project has been aimed to provide a trade-off study between a reference wing stub box design and alternative advanced designs of the same structure incorporating new design technologies to reach objectives of “weight reduction”,“increased safety”, “reduction of manufacturing and maintenance costs”, “decreasing of environmental impacts”.

The virtual simulation techniques and tools have today so pervasively entered the aerospace sector that it would be almost superfluous to enumerate the reasons of such a broad and all-encompassing diffusion and the attainment of all above mentioned objectives can be indeed very effectively supported by using the most advanced numerical simulation methods.

A methodology has been set-up and exploited, which efficiently solve the simulation problem, by tackling all possible issues related to management of the geometries (import, fixing, simplifications, adaptations, etc.), definition of a high-quality mesh, application of specific material (composite) behaviour laws, up to loading, solution and post-processing; the advanced character of the approach is linked to the following aspects:

• The complete modelling process has been integrated into a parameterized global process flow that, under the control of optimization techniques allow a quick and complete exploration of the influence of the parameters that can influence the system performances;
• The complete set of analysed models has been explored to rank them with respect to their key performances and to select the optimal candidate(s) considering the multiple selected objectives, by exploiting the mostly advanced Multi Criteria Decision methods.

Project Results:

The projects activities have been divided into 4 Work Packages (WPs).

In WP1 it was developed a baseline model of the advanced wing box stub, which constitute the necessary reference for the following design activities. In WP2 different variants were developed to analyse the impact of the considered structural modifications including geometry and material (metal or composite) on the overall performances of the system. The implementation of optimization methodologies was used to allow the determination of the best suitable system parameters, within the framework of their variability range and of the existing technological constraints (agreed with the Call for Proposal proponent). WP3 was dedicated to the completion of the trade-off study, by allowing the individuation of the most promising technical solutions.

Last, into WP4 have been grouped management activities.

Potential Impact:

In line with the aims of Wingteh_Evaluation, the result of the trade-off on the wing box made it possible to select and verify a candidate optimal configuration to be used for the subsequent phases within the Clean Sky project.

The variants of the wing box analyzed with classical structure in aluminum were penalized in terms of total weight reached in front of a mechanical behavior comparable. Among the variants in composite material, analysis has highlighted the differences in behavior with respect to the number of ribs, the number of spars and definition of the composite in terms stack.

As the final result of the project, a configuration of composite materials has been identified that -with respect to the initial reference configuration- maintaining similar deflections and improving the structural usage factor allowed a weight reduction of 25%.

The Wingteh_Evaluation project allowed to highlight the feasibility and efficiency of an automated process flow that, starting from some basic topological configurations, allows of fully automatic regeneration of the entire finite element model of the wing box, the related analysis under the action of design loads and the evaluation of results and structure’s merit parameters.

It is therefore particularly easy to explore in a systematic way a large number of potential interesting configurations, gradually discarding the less performing (in terms of weight, strength, stifness, buckling behavior) until the identification of the optimal one.

The methodology is valid reference, which can be extended to other contexts where it is of interest the optimization of structures formed by panels and beams reinforcement.

The project results will produce important impacts, introducing in the wing components technology fundamental innovations that will bring to the attainment of significant technical, economic and environmental benefits at European level.

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