Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering

Committee Chair

Wade W. Huebsch.


The inspiration for this work has been derived from the work done by Lippisch, the Hortens, Northrop and largely by the flight of birds in nature. Swept-wing tailless aircraft have been in vogue since World War-II and have now taken on a new role in stealth warfare primarily due to their low radar signatures. They also exhibit a highly efficient aerodynamic configuration with low parasitic drag. However, conventional tailless aircraft suffer from a lack of proper control mechanisms and have thus been forced to compromise their efficiency for better control. This work done at WVU aims to introduce a morphing mechanism for better control of tailless aircraft1. This morphing mechanism will provide for variable twist capability of the wing and can theoretically provide better roll, pitch and yaw control for a tailless aircraft. This research is intended to give us a better understanding of the flow physics that are encountered during the various morphed stages of flight and compares them to conventional geometries. A three dimensional model of a conventional and morphed wing was simulated using an inviscid panel code method at various stages of flight, and the results were compared to actual wind tunnel data. The study looks at the coefficients of lift, induced drag and the various moments encountered. Preliminary studies indicate wing morphing as a suitable candidate for more efficient flight.;1This work was funded by NASA-Dryden flight research center.