Engineering Analysis of the Use of Advanced Toughened Composites Foru.s. Army Aircraft Primary Structures

Period of Performance: 01/01/1988 - 12/31/1988

$136K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Simula, Inc.
Tempe, AZ 85283
Principal Investigator

Abstract

AN SBIR PHASE II PROGRAM IS PROPOSED TO EXAMINE THE INFLUENCE OF TOUGHENED COMPOSITES ON THE DESIGN OF PRIMARY STRUCTURES FOR U.S. ARMY AIRCRAFT. THE PROPOSED PROGRAM IS A FOLLOW-ON STUDY TO A PHASE I SBIR CONTRACT CONDUCTED FOR THE U.S. ARMY AVIATION APPLIED TECHNOLOGY DIRECTORATE (AATD) IN WHICH CANDIDATE TOUGHENED MATRIX MATERIALS WERE EVALUATED. THE PHASE II PROGRAM WILL AUGMENT THE ARMY'S EXISTING COMPOSITES DATABASE DEVELOPED IN THE ADVANCED COMPOSITE AIRFRAME PROGRAM (ACAP) BY EXAMINING THE PROPERTIES AND DESIGN POTENTIAL OF FIBER-REINFORCED COMPOSITES WITH THESE TOUGHENED MATRIX MATERIALS. JOINTLY, SIMULA INC. AND ITS SUBCONTRACTOR, BELL HELICOPTER TEXTRON, WILL SELECT A CANDIDATE STRUCTURAL COMPONENT FROM THE BELL ACAP DESIGN. FUNCTIONAL REQUIREMENTS, LOADING CONDITIONS AND DESIGN ALLOWABLES DEVELOPED FOR THE ACAP COMPONENT WILL FORM THE BASELINE FOR EVALUATION OF THESE RECENTLY-DEVELOPED TOUGHENED COMPOSITE MATERIALS. THE GOAL OF THE PROGRAM WILL BE TO IDENTIFY WEIGHT, PERFORMANCE AND COST ADVANTAGES THAT THE TOUGHENED COMPOSITE MATERIALS COULD OFFER. DESIGN FACTORS SUCH AS FRACTURE TOUGHNESS, FATIGUE AND CREEP BEHAVIOR, PAINTABILITY, SOLVENT RESISTANCE, AND BOND CHARACTERISTICS WILL BE EXAMINED. AN OPTICAL TASK TO BUILD, TEST AND EVALUATE A MODIFIED VERSION OF THE ACAP COMPONENT WITH TOUGHENED COMPOSITE MATERIALS IS PRESENTED.