Date of Graduation

Spring 2018

Document Type

Honors Research Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Major

Chemical Engineering

Research Sponsor

Dr. Jiahua Zhu

First Reader

Dr. Chelsea Monty

Second Reader

Dr. Robert Veillette

Abstract

Modern flight vehicles, such as rockets, missiles, and airplanes, experience a force caused by forebody wave drag during the flight. This drag force is induced when the frontal point of each vehicle breaks the pressure wave during flight. Efforts to reduce this wave drag force to improve flight efficiency include modifying the nosecone profile of the flight vehicles to lower the drag force.

This project revolved around creating a design to make the transformation of nosecone shapes from a ¾ Parabolic profile to a ½ Power Series profile possible, mid-flight. Using a novel nosecone assembly, shape memory alloys (SMAs) and an electronics system, this transition will be dictated by real-time flight velocity.

This technology could benefit society through its use in aerospace applications to improve flight efficiency. On a more personal level, it could improve the possibility of opening up supersonic flight to the public once again. For example, Boom Supersonic is currently designing planes which they hope the public will one day use as a mode of transportation. However, there are many design challenges as one might imagine- including cutting down the drag resistance experienced by the plane in-flight, which translates to having to carry more fuel

Comments

Certain material is withheld from this report for the future patent-ability of this design. Interested readers should contact the author.

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