V6- Aero - Lead Story

Accurate, Affordable Simulation of Aircraft Operating Environments

MTS aerospace application engineer Dr. Christoph Leser discusses why multiaxial loading technology is essential to today’s aircraft material and component testing.

Q: What industry changes prompted MTS to develop a new solution?
Leser: Airframes today span a broader range of sizes and speeds, and face new noise- and pollution-reducing demands that require engines to run at much higher temperatures, introducing new thermal fatigue concerns. Manufacturers also continue to introduce new, more lightweight and low-cost elastomers, metals and composite metals, of which little precedent exists for characterizing their performance in real-world operating conditions.

This increasing sophistication in aircraft designs has necessitated the development of highly descriptive and complex material and component models. To effectively validate such models, manufacturers must pursue far more realistic simulations of airframe and turbine operating environments.

Employing uniaxial testing technology for this task yields insufficient data. The other option is to conduct full-scale testing, with components in full motion. While this approach does sufficiently simulate real-world material and component operating environments, it is extremely expensive, time-consuming, and essentially impractical at a stage of development where design iterations are still under evaluation.

Q: What technology has MTS developed to resolve this challenge?
Leser: We’ve developed multiaxial loading technology, which allows manufacturers to achieve highly accurate and affordable simulation of the mixed-loading operating environments of aircraft material and components.

Q: How have you achieved this combination of simulation accuracy and affordability?
Leser: By combining our expertise in modular load frames, innovative control methods, advanced alignment techniques and integrated environmental chambers. This convergence of technologies is available through a suite of compact and affordable MTS planar biaxial test systems.

These planar biaxial test systems employ both matrix and offset control modes simultaneously using vertical and horizontal actuators, precisely replicating the complex load environments representative of real-world aircraft operating conditions. The full range of stress and strain states can be executed, including uniaxial with and without torque; torsional; planar biaxial with and without torque; and thermal effect.

All MTS planar biaxial test systems feature “building block” designs, with interchangeable control algorithms, control technology, hydraulic distribution and supply, and mechanical devices.

Since recreating accurate, repeatable load environments requires properly aligned load frames, we have also developed advanced alignment procedures, with all the necessary tools available in a single, convenient kit. User-friendly software provides clear, visual and voice command feedback in real time, making it easy to achieve full alignment.

Another critical element to meeting these complex test demands involves subjecting materials and components to the extreme operating temperatures in which they must perform. MTS planar biaxial test systems subject specimens to these temperatures using a proprietary heating element technology, capable of sustaining specimen temperatures up to 750˚C.

By applying the right loads, control and environmental conditions simultaneously, these systems replicate aircraft operating conditions with a level of sophistication that rivals full-scale testing, only at a fraction of the cost and complexity.

By applying the right loads, control and environmental conditions simultaneously, these systems replicate aircraft operating conditions with a level of sophistication that rivals full-scale testing, only at a fraction of the cost and complexity.

Q: What are the benefits to jet engine manufacturers and component suppliers?
Leser: Equipped with better insight into the complex loading behaviors and environmental responses of aircraft materials and components, manufacturers can design safer and more efficient aircraft, in less time and at a lower cost. Better products will be brought to market sooner, benefiting manufacturers and passengers alike.

>> LEARN MORE ABOUT THE MTS PLANAR BIAXIAL TEST SYSTEM

>> LEARN MORE ABOUT THE MTS PLANAR BIAXIAL TEST SYSTEM WITH TORQUE



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MTS Systems

14000 Technology Drive
Eden Prairie, MN USA
55344  

Tel: 952.937.4000
Tel: 800.328.2255
Fax: 952.937.4515
Email: info@mts.com