Closed loop position and pre-stress control for a morphing aircraft wing with distributed multi-axis pneumatic actuation

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

This paper presents the design and control of a morphing wing structure using an active tensegrity structure. A tensegrity structure, which is a set of compressive members (struts) stabilized by a set of tensile members (cables) is a good basis for creating a lightweight active structure, due to its potentially high stiffness-to-weight ratio, and the ease with which actuators can be embedded by replacing selected members in the structure. In this work, a multi-axis control scheme is developed for closed loop control of the shape and internal force (pre-stress) of the structure. An experimental prototype has been built, with 6 unidirectional pneumatic cylinders controlled by pulse-width-modulated switching valves. Shape change in terms of twisting and span-wise bending are demonstrated, and an optical motion tracking system is used to help investigate the dynamic position control of the structure. The structure can achieve ±15° twist change for wing angle of attack or ±10° span-wise bending in a 300mm span length. By simultaneously controlling the structural pre-stress, the geometric stiffness of the structure can also be varied. Future research is discussed, which will involve embedding the active structure in a wing aerofoil and testing in a wind tunnel.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBATH/ASME 2018 Symposium on Fluid Power and Motion Control, FPMC 2018
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME)
PagesV001T01A031
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9780791851968
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Sep 2018
EventBATH/ASME 2018 Symposium on Fluid Power and Motion Control, FPMC 2018 - Bath, UK United Kingdom
Duration: 12 Sep 201814 Sep 2018

Conference

ConferenceBATH/ASME 2018 Symposium on Fluid Power and Motion Control, FPMC 2018
CountryUK United Kingdom
CityBath
Period12/09/1814/09/18

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes
  • Control and Systems Engineering

Cite this

Zhou, H., Plummer, A., & Cleaver, D. (2018). Closed loop position and pre-stress control for a morphing aircraft wing with distributed multi-axis pneumatic actuation. In BATH/ASME 2018 Symposium on Fluid Power and Motion Control, FPMC 2018 (pp. V001T01A031). American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). https://doi.org/10.1115/FPMC2018-8863