186. IMPACT ON WATER OF AIRCRAFT STRUCTURES: A REVIEW

Department: Structural Engineering
Faculty Advisor(s): Chiara Bisagni
Award(s): Honorable Mention | Best Literature Review Award

Primary Student
Name: Marco Simone Pigazzini
Email: mpigazzi@ucsd.edu
Phone: 000-000-0000
Grad Year: 2018

Abstract
The impact on water is considered a major issue as far as aeronautical lightweight structures are concerned; indeed, in case of a water entry scenario, a large distributed pressure peak develops on the bottom skin panels of the fuselage leading to high decelerations which may cause severe injuries to occupants. In the framework of aeronautical structures crashworthiness, both aircraft and rotorcraft frames are designed to gradually collapse in order to absorb the kinetic energy in case of a moderate impact on a rigid surface; however, typical crashworthy devices are ineffective in case of an in-flight collision with water which often results in a catastrophic event. In the past, the research has been driven by the aim of predicting the force peak caused by the impact of either an elastic or a rigid body onto a water surface; several theoretical models have been proposed and numerous experimental tests have been performed. New interest was found in this field following the advent of numerical techniques which allowed for structural analyses capable of taking into account the fluid-structure coupling. At the present time, due to the constant growth of the computational power, coupled fluid-structure analyses are routinely performed in order to assess the loads distribution on deformable structures caused by a water entry. The essential milestones in the framework of impact on water?s research are presented in this review, particular consideration is given to aeronautical related applications. The main theoretical and experimental results are illustrated; the different numerical techniques used to investigate the phenomenon are discussed and results are compared. Recent advances in research and suggestions for future developments are presented.

Industry Application Area(s)
Aerospace, Defense, Security | Materials

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