A model of an aircraft towing a cable-body system

C. K. H. Chin, R. L. May


We integrate together a model of an aircraft with a model of a body being towed by a thin elastic cable. The model of the towed body allows for either payout or retrieval of the cable. Both the aircraft and towed body are modelled as rigid bodies having six degrees of freedom. All aerodynamic forces and moments acting on the bodies are approximated linearly and so are expressed in terms of stability coefficients. A variable time step was employed for the aircraft model and a fixed time step was used for the towed body model; the integrated model retains this feature. Results of simulated flights are presented for both a Cessna and a Boeing 747 towing a Hayes TRX-12 target.

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21914/anziamj.v47i0.1066

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ANZIAM Journal, ISSN 1446-8735, copyright Australian Mathematical Society.