Date of Graduation
Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
A formal framework is presented that allows for the analysis of the potential for using engine thrust control for aircraft actuator failure accommodation. Three sets of parameters have been identified as critical: number of engines and their position, engine thrust and throttle dynamics, and type and severity of the actuator failure. A mathematical model was developed that allows for the determination of the values of some of the parameters when the others are imposed such as determining the thrust control authority when the engine locations and Euler angles are known. Additionally, the engine locations can be determined when the thrust control authority and engine Euler angles are known and the engine Euler angles can be determined when the engine locations and thrust control authority are known. A MATLAB/Simulink simulation environment was built around a model of a large transport that can accommodate up to ten engines at different locations. A fuzzy logic controller was designed and employed for failure accommodation. The fuzzy logic controller utilizes the pilot lateral, longitudinal, and directional commands as well as the aircraft's pitch attitude, roll attitude, yaw attitude and respective angular rates as the inputs to the system and provides throttle commands for each engine based on its location with respect to the aircraft's center of mass. Failures of varying severity on the rudder, left or right aileron, and left or right elevator were implemented. The controller was capable of accommodating an extremely severe aileron failure and moderately severe rudder failure without additional pilot input. The controller was capable of mitigating some of the pilot command required for a moderate elevator failure. The simulation environment was used to verify the analytical results and to demonstrate the fault tolerant capabilities of multiple engine configurations. It proved to be a flexible and efficient tool for analysis and control system development.
Beamer, Frederick M., "Modeling and Analysis of Multiple Engine Aircraft Configurations for Fault Tolerant Control" (2011). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 2295.