Thesis

High aspect ratio wing design for solar powered UAV

In this report, a rectangular wing based on the SD7062 airfoil is modeled and analyzed. This wing is to be used with the CSUN UAS team and is designed for a solar powered UAV. The design went through several iterations with a heavy emphasis on sandwich composite materials. A high aspect ratio wing was configured with key parameters being a large surface area to support solar arrays while keeping the weight low. The design that held the most merit was a hollow wing made from a sandwich composite shell. Giving a finite thickness to the skin while keeping the weight down enabled a wing that was very strong and able to withstand the loads expected in flight. For an 96" half wingspan with a 14" chord, the final weight was just over 36 ounces. This wing was able to support 3 g-loads with an expected aircraft weight of 20 pounds. The solar area generated was 30 square inches per ounce for a 96" half wingspan. The work was performed using Autodesk Simulation Composite Design, Autodesk Inventor Professional, and Autodesk Simulation Mechanical. The results were then analyzed in Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets for comparison of the configurations evaluated.

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