A Flight Case Study Eurofighter Typhoon Engineering Essay

Published: 2021-07-02 02:00:04
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Aerodynamic Principles
By
Steven McCluskey 22009279
Fig1.
Eurofighter Typhoon Flying
This is a research report of the Eurofighter Typhoon, the report will look at the history of this type of aircraft as well as a number of technical features of the plane.
Contents
Introduction………………………………………………………………3
Wing Features…….……………………….……………………………...4
Fuselage Features………………………………………………………5-6
Propulsion System………………………………………………………..7
Introduction
The Eurofighter Typhoon is an advanced swing-role fighter aircraft. This mean the aircraft is capable of both air-to-air and air-to-land combat and can switch to either during a mission. However emphasis was placed on air-to-air combat by the four nations involved in the project (Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom) (Eurofighter Typhoon 2013). The first idea for a multirole began in the 1960’s and eventually produced the Panavia Tornado (Corkish 2013).
In 1989 the production of the first Typhoon prototypes began with each of the nations involved accepting responsibility of hosting production and assembly of the components it was responsible for (Eurofighter Typhoon 2013). The Eurofighter was produced in three Tranches in order to allow new capabilities to be added in the future. "The first one for 148 aircraft, the second and the third for 236 each, with the Tranche 1 planned in production between 2003 and 2007; Tranche 2 in production between 2007 and 2012 and the Tranche 3 in production between 2012 and 2017," (Eurofighter Typhoon 2013).
Each unit has a cost of £64.8 million for Tranches 1 & 2, and a cost of £125 million for the third tranche. The aircraft is extremely agile, due to the airframe size being 10-20% smaller as well as being 30% lighter (Eurofighter Typhoon Technical Guide, 2011), so the pilot can perform advanced manoeuvres when engaged in a dogfight, it also has a number of features to improve the weapon systems effectiveness.
Wing Features
The Eurofighter Typhoon uses a foreplane/delta wing configuration which makes the aircraft aerodynamically unstable. This allows advantages in a number of key aspects for a fighter craft such as agility, supersonic performance, reduced drag, lift and STOL (short take off and landing) performance (Eurofighter Typhoon Technical Guide, 2011).
Fig2.
This image gives a basic illustration of the Eurofighter Typhoons dimensions as well as showing the aircrafts shape.
The Eurofighter Typhoon’s wing area is approximately 50m2 which means the aircraft has a small loading (Owen, 1998), wing loading is calculated by dividing the loaded weight of the plane divided by the wing area. This allows for the aircraft to be very manoeuvrable and so makes the aircraft ideal for dogfight situations.
Due to the high stresses the canards, out-board flaperons and engines nozzles experience as well as high temperatures they must be made from an extremely strong material. In this Owen states superplastic forming and diffusion bonding process is applied to titanium to create these parts. This process allows a more rigid structure thereby producing an improved strength to weight ratio than if the parts were produced using normal machined titanium. The wing is manufactured with a multi-spar construction, with both the skins and spars being made from Carbon Fibre Composites (Eurofighter.com, Wing, no date). Although the use of carbon fibre does increase the cost of manufacture for each aircraft it has a number of extremely beneficial features namely a high strength-to-weight ratio.
Owen also states that "the wing leading edges, fin leading edges, rudder trailing edge and wingtip DASS/ECM pods are made from a Lithium-Aluminium alloy", this alloy gives a superior strength-to-weight ratio rather than many standard aluminium alloys. Most of the materials used in the planes manufacture also improve the stealth of the aircraft.
Fuselage Features
Fig3.
Illustration details the internal parts of the aircraft.
The Eurofighters unstable pitch causes the aircraft nose to point upwards during flight, this causes increased agility and also helps reduce the aircrafts drag in flight. While the canards can be used to control both pitch and roll they may also be used as extra airbrakes when landing (Owen, 1998). On this particular aircraft the canards have been attached to the fuselage much closer to the plane’s nose than they usually are on similar aircraft. This allows the aircraft to increase the maximum angle of attack.
The aircrafts front fuselage houses the cockpit and canopy, however due to the unusual position of the canards the pilots range of observation is restricted on both sides. Also at the front inside the nose cone is a Captor-E AESA radar. The central part of the fuselage holds fuel tanks and a secondary power system as well as the internal gun (Eurofighter.com Centre Fuselage, no date). Along the fuselage is a central spine, this helps direct the flow around the plane and also houses an airbrake behind the cockpit. The rear of the fuselage house the aircrafts 2 Eurojet EJ200 engines.
The Eurofighter’s front fuselage structure is made of CFC (Carbon Fibre Composites), GRP (Glass Reinforced Plastic), aluminium and titanium (Eurofighter Front Fuselage, no date). This creates a rigid structure while also saving weight thereby improving the Eurofighter’s aerodynamics.
The centre fuselage "is essentially an integral aluminium structure with titanium reinforcements that is planked with a single, monolithic outer shell made of carbon composite material" (Premium Aerotec Eurofighter, 2011). This results in the structure being low weight with high stability to withstand the stresses exerted on it. Due to the rear fuselage and front fuselage being connected to the centre fuselage it must withstand all static and dynamic forces.
The rear fuselage contains a vertical shear web which separates the two engine bays, this is made from SPFDB titanium (Eurofighter Rear Fuselage, no date). This material and process is ideal as it is capable of withstanding the extremely high temperatures produced by the jet engines, this process also offers 20-30% cost savings. For external panels carbon fibre composites are used were temperature is permitted.
The table below is gives an example of technical data values for some carbon fibre types.
Fiber Type
​Number of
Filaments
Tensile​ Strength
(ksi)           (MPa)
​​Tensile Modulus*
(Msi)            (GPa)
​Strain**
(%)
​Weight/Length
(g/m)
​Density
(g/cm3)
​Standard
Spool Size
(lb)
AS2C​
3000​
​644
​4440
​32
221​
1.9​
0.200​
1.80​
4.0​
​AS4
​3000
​653
​4500
​33.5
​231
​1.8
​0.210
​1.79
​4.0
​6000
​628
​4330
33.5​
​231
​1.8
​0.427
​1.79
​4.0
​12000
​649
​4475
​33.5
​231
​1.8
​0.858
​1.79
​8.0
​AS4C
​3000
​647
​4460
​33.5
​231
​1.8
​0.200
​1.78
​4.0
​6000
​626
​4320
​33.5
​231
​1.8
​0.400
​1.78
​4.0
​12000
​634
​4370
​33.5
​231
​1.8
​0.800
​1.78
​8.0
AS4D​
​12000
​689
​4750
33.5​
​245
​1.8
​0.765
​1.79
​8.0
​AS7
​12000
​700
​4830
33.0​
​241
​1.8
​0.800
1.79​
​8.0
​IM2A
​6000
740​
5100​
40.0​
​276
​1.7
0.223​
1.78​
2.0​
​12000
​790
​5450
​40.0
​276
​1.8
​0.446
​1.78
​4.0
​IM2C
​12000
​830
​5720
​43.0
​296
​1.9
​0.446
​1.78
​4.0
​IM6
​12000
​833
​5740
​40.5
​279
​1.9
​0.446
​1.76
​4.0
​IM7
​6000
​770
​5310
​40.0
​276
​1.8
​0.223
​1.78
​2.0
​12000
​822
​5670
​40.0
​276
​1.9
​0.446
​1.78
​4.0
​IM8
​12000
​885
​6102
​44.0
​303
​1.8
​0.446
​1.78
​4.0
​IM9
​12000
​890
​6140
​44.0
​304
​1.9
​0.335
​1.80
​2.0
​IM10
​12000
​1010
​6964
​44.0
​303
​2.1
​0.324
​1.79
​2.0
Table1.
Propulsion System
The Eurofighter Typhoon uses 2 Eurojet EJ200 engines which are turbofan engines. These engines are highly reliable and readily available which ensures low operational costs.
Fig4.

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