In the work at hand, the development of a morphing flap, actuated through shape memory alloy load bearing elements, is described. Moving from aerodynamic specifications, prescribing the morphed shape enhancing the aerodynamic efficiency of the flap, a suitable actuation architecture was identified, able to affect the curvature. Each rib of the flap was split into three elastic elements, namely "cells", connected each others in serial way and providing the bending stiffness to the structure. The edges of each cell are linked to SMA elements, whose contraction induces rotation onto the cell itself with an increase of the local curvature of the flap airfoil. The cells are made of two metallic plates crossing each others to form a characteristic "X" configuration; a good flexibility and an acceptable stress concentration level was obtained non connecting the plates onto the crossing zone. After identifying the main design parameters of the structure (i.e. plates relative angle, thickness and depth, SMA length, cross section and connections to the cell) an optimization was performed, with the scope of enhancing the achievable rotation of the cell, its ability in absorbing the external aerodynamic loads and, at the same time, containing the stress level and the weight. The conceptual scheme of the architecture was then reinterpreted in view of a practical realization of the prototype. Implementation issues (SMA - cells connection and cells relative rotation to compensate the impressed inflection assuring the SMA pre-load) were considered. Through a detailed FE model the prototype morphing performance were investigated in presence of the most severe load conditions

A SMA-based morphing flap: conceptual and advanced design

PECORA, ROSARIO
2015

Abstract

In the work at hand, the development of a morphing flap, actuated through shape memory alloy load bearing elements, is described. Moving from aerodynamic specifications, prescribing the morphed shape enhancing the aerodynamic efficiency of the flap, a suitable actuation architecture was identified, able to affect the curvature. Each rib of the flap was split into three elastic elements, namely "cells", connected each others in serial way and providing the bending stiffness to the structure. The edges of each cell are linked to SMA elements, whose contraction induces rotation onto the cell itself with an increase of the local curvature of the flap airfoil. The cells are made of two metallic plates crossing each others to form a characteristic "X" configuration; a good flexibility and an acceptable stress concentration level was obtained non connecting the plates onto the crossing zone. After identifying the main design parameters of the structure (i.e. plates relative angle, thickness and depth, SMA length, cross section and connections to the cell) an optimization was performed, with the scope of enhancing the achievable rotation of the cell, its ability in absorbing the external aerodynamic loads and, at the same time, containing the stress level and the weight. The conceptual scheme of the architecture was then reinterpreted in view of a practical realization of the prototype. Implementation issues (SMA - cells connection and cells relative rotation to compensate the impressed inflection assuring the SMA pre-load) were considered. Through a detailed FE model the prototype morphing performance were investigated in presence of the most severe load conditions
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11588/619745
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