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Fundamental Aeronautics Program Banner

FUNDAMENTAL AERONAUTICS - THE FIXED WING PROJECT
Artist concept of a future vehicle design.Fixed wing research includes exploring and developing tools, technologies and concepts for vastly improved energy efficiency and environmental compatibility necessary for the sustained growth of commercial aviation vital to the U.S. economy and quality of life.

The objective of research in this project is to develop concepts and technologies for dramatic improvements in the noise, emissions, and performance of transport aircraft. The resulting scientific knowledge, in the form of experiments, data, calculations, and analyses, is critical for conceiving and designing future generations of transport aircraft.

For questions regarding the Fixed Wing Project, contact Ruben Del Rosario.



The Fixed Wing Project is organized around Research Themes that articulate the longer-term, important areas of research necessary to advance the state of the art for a flight regime or discipline. Within the context of the themes, nearer-term technological capabilities necessary to help overcome national challenges in air transportation are defined as Technical Challenges (TCs).

Research Themes and Technical Challenges (TCs)
Theme TC Title TC Description
Lighter-Weight, Lower-Drag Fuselage Fuselage Structural Weight Reduce fuselage structural weight by 15% with neutral or positive drag impacts while not affecting certification and passenger comfort (TRL4*)
Higher Aspect Ratio Optimal Wing Optimal Aspect Ratio Enable a 1.5-2X increase in the optimal wing aspect ratio with certifiable structures and flight control (TRL 3*)
Quieter Low-Speed Performance Community Noise Reduce perceived community noise by 12 dB cum with minimal impact on weight and performance (TRL5*)
Cleaner, Compact, Higher Bypass Ratio Propulsion Low NOx, Fuel-Flex Combustor Reduce NOx emissions from fuel-flexible combustors to 80% below the CAEP6 standard with minimal impacts on weight, noise, or component life (TRL3*)
Cleaner, Compact, Higher Bypass Ratio Propulsion Compact, High OPR Gas Generator Enable reduced size/flow gas generators with 50+ OPR and disk/seal temperatures of 1500F with minimal impact on noise and component life (TRL4*)
Hybrid Gas-Electric Propulsion Electric Motor Power Density Achieve a 2X increase in the power density of an electric motor (TRL 3*)
Unconventional Propulsion-Airframe Integration Integrated Boundary-Layer Ingestion System Achieve a vehicle-level net system benefit with a distortion-tolerant inlet/fan, boundary-layer ingesting propulsion system on a representative vehicle (TRL3*)
Alternative Fuel Emissions Alternative Fuel Emissions at Cruise Fundamental characterization of a representative range of alternative fuel emissions at cruise altitude
* Learn About Technology Readiness Levels (TRLs)

TECHNICAL HIGHLIGHTS

+ Turbine Noise Generation in
   Turbofan Engines


Ameila in the Wind Tunnel going through tests.
AMELIA Wind Tunnel Tests
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