The FLEXOP project is developing groundbreaking multidisciplinary aircraft design capabilities for Europe that will increase competitiveness with emerging markets, particularly in terms of aircraft development costs.
A closer coupling of wing aeroelasticity and flight control systems in the design process opens new opportunities to explore previously unviable designs. Common methods and tools across the disciplines also provide a way to rapidly adapt existing designs into derivative aircraft, at a reduced technological risk (e.g. using control to solve a flutter problem discovered during development).
The project has the following goals:
• 50% reduction of development and certification costs for next generation airliners
• Integration of shape and loads monitoring in wing structure for sustainability and performance
• 7% fuel efficiency improvement or 20% increased payload
These inter-disciplinary capabilities will improve the design cycle and the verification & validation process of both derivative and new aircraft. Better control of development and certification costs can be achieved if these capabilities are used to address problems early in the design process. Flight test data will be posted on the project website to provide a benchmark for the EU aerospace community.
The project’s results will serve as a preliminary outlining of certification standards for future EU flexible transport aircraft.
The consortium consists of 10 partners from six European countries with excellent practical knowledge of wing design and active flexible mode control, which are currently limited in their competitive performance on the world market.