NASA SBIR 2012 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 12-1 A3.01-9938
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Structural Efficiency - Airframe
PROPOSAL TITLE: Innovative Structural and Material Concepts for Low-Weight Low-Drag Aircraft Design

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
ZONA Technology, Inc.
9489 East Ironwood Square Drive
Scottsdale, AZ 85258 - 4578
(480) 945-9988

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Satyajit Ghoman
9489 East Ironwood Square Drive
Scottsdale, AZ 85258 - 4578
(480) 945-9988

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Jennifer Scherr
9489 East Ironwood Square Drive
Scottsdale, AZ 85258 - 4578
(480) 945-9988

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 5

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Structural Efficiency - Airframe is a Technology Available (TAV) subtopic that includes NASA Intellectual Property (IP). Do you plan to use the NASA IP under the award?

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The overall objective of this multi-phase project is to explore, develop, integrate, and test several innovative structural design concepts and new material possibilities that will fully leverage the expertise of the ZONA/Boeing Team for enhancing the current state-of-the-art of aircraft design. The technical objectives specific to the Phase I of this effort are threefold. First, a suitable anisotropic composite material will be identified and further studied for its suitability to the design objectives of this research. A baseline SUGAR aircraft configuration will be thoroughly studied for exploring design possibilities as well as to provide a benchmark for comparing performance improvements achieved by optimization studies performed during later stages. Secondly, the skin of the baseline SUGAR wings will then be modified to comprise of the anisotropic composite material, and the FE model will be modified to comprise of (1) distributed multiple control surfaces for AAW-type optimization in Design Route 1, and (2) variable camber continuous trailing edge flaps (VCCTEF) for control output optimization in Design Route 2. The updated FE models will then be used to further optimize the composite layup sequence as well as skin thicknesses. Thirdly, the distributed control surfaces and the VCCTEF on SUGAR high aspect ratio wing will be separately optimized for control input to achieve load alleviation and drag reduction. These two separate optimization processes of Design Route 1 and Design Route 2 will be performed iteratively to achieve an optimum low-drag low-weight design. Finally, once the optimum designs are obtained, a detailed performance review will be conducted to quantify the benefits of the non-conventional design technologies explored. A material fabrication feasibility study will also be performed.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA's current research efforts in aircraft design focus on many performance improvement goals such as aircraft weight minimization, aerodynamic drag reduction, and improvements in fuel efficiency of the next generation sub/supersonic commercial aircraft. These design drivers call for investigation of unconventional and revolutionary design concepts. The ZONA/Boeing team's innovative modular design process will enable the physics-based structural, aerodynamic, and aeroelastic analyses of such complex configurations, thereby greatly improving the current knowledge-base of NASA's Fundamental Aerodynamics Program. By performing a detailed design optimization of non-conventional SUGAR aircraft, ZONA/Boeing team will further the knowledge of such structural and configurational concepts as strut-braced high-aspect ratio wings, distributed multiple control surfaces, variable camber continuous trailing edge flaps, etc. The outcome of Phase I + II effort will largely expand NASA's technology portfolio by analyzing the non-conventional aircraft concepts to meet the future performance goals. The research performed in this effort can be easily extended to other relevant ongoing NASA projects, such as X-56A MUTT aircraft wings, HALE aircraft etc.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Because of its highly integrated design and analysis capability for designing non-conventional structural concepts with aeroelastic constraints, high fidelity structural and aerodynamic analyses, and ability to perform nonlinear trim optimizations, ZONA has discovered that the proposed research and related function evaluation process has a unique competitive edge in the commercial and military aircraft design market. The structural and materials concepts explored in Phase I + II of this effort can be effectively extended for application towards many categories of flight vehicles including blended wing-bodies, joined-wings, sub/supersonic transports, morphing aircraft, space planes, reusable launch vehicles, and similar revolutionary concepts pursued. Hence, the proposed research and its outcomes will be highly needed for designing the next generation of civil as well as military aircraft to meet the stringent future performance goals.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.)
Models & Simulations (see also Testing & Evaluation)
Smart/Multifunctional Materials

Form Generated on 03-28-13 15:21