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CLIMB PERFORMANCE

7

CHAPTER 7 CLIMB PERFORMANCE PAGE 7.1 7.2 7.3 INTRODUCTION PURPOSE OF TEST THEORY 7.3.1 SAWTOOTH CLIMBS 7.3.2 STEADY STATE APPROACH TO CLIMB PERFORMANCE 7.3.2.1 FORCES IN FLIGHT 7.3.2.2 CLIMB ANGLE 7.3.2.3 CLIMB GRADIENT 7.3.2.4 RATE OF CLIMB 7.3.2.5 TIME TO CLIMB 7.3.2.6 SUMMARY OF STEADY STATE CLIMB 7.3.2.7 THRUST EFFECTS 7.3.3 TOTAL ENERGY APPROACH TO CLIMB PERFORMANCE 7.3.3.1 TIME BASED CLIMB SCHEDULE 7.3.3.1.1 SPECIFIC ENERGY VERSUS TOTAL ENERGY 7.3.3.2 FUEL BASED CLIMB SCHEDULE 7.3.3.2.1 TIME VERSUS FUEL BASED CLIMB 7.3.3.2.2 MAXIMUM RANGE CLIMB SCHEDULE TEST METHODS AND TECHNIQUES 7.4.1 SAWTOOTH CLIMB 7.4.1.1 DATA REQUIRED 7.4.1.2 TEST CRITERIA 7.4.1.3 DATA REQUIREMENTS 7.4.1.4 SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS 7.4.2 CHECK CLIMB TEST 7.4.2.1 DATA REQUIRED 7.4.2.2 TEST CRITERIA 7.4.2.3 DATA REQUIREMENTS DATA REDUCTION 7.5.1 SAWTOOTH CLIMB 7.5.1.1 SPECIFIC EXCESS POWER CORRECTION 7.5.1.2 DRAG CORRECTION 7.5.1.3 THRUST LIFT CORRECTION 7.5.1.4 ALTITUDE CORRECTION 7.5.2 COMPUTER DATA REDUCTION 7.5.2.1 ENERGY ANALYSIS 7.5.2.2 SAWTOOTH CLIMB DATA ANALYSIS 7.1 7.1 7.2 7.2 7.4 7.5 7.7 7.9 7.10 7.12 7.13 7.15 7.18 7.19 7.20 7.25 7.29 7.30 7.31 7.31 7.32 7.33 7.33 7.33 7.33 7.36 7.36 7.37 7.37 7.37 7.38 7.39 7.42 7.43 7.44 7.45 7.50 7.54

7.4

7.5

7.6

7.i

9.56 7.58 7.58 7.7 7.2 GREEK SYMBOLS REFERENCES 7.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 7.9.ii .9 MISSION SUITABILITY SPECIFICATION COMPLIANCE GLOSSARY 7.1 NOTATIONS 7.10 7.60 7.60 7.55 7.8 7.

8 7.17 7.2 7.27 7.15 7.7 7.8 7.11 7.iii .29 7.18 7.19 7.5 7.13 7.11 7.5 7.9 7.9 7.31 7.4 7.44 7.16 7.34 7.17 7.10 7.27 7.12 7.24 7.22 7.18 7.28 7.CLIMB PERFORMANCE CHAPTER 7 FIGURES PAGE 7.19 7.3 7.23 CLIMB CORRECTION FACTOR FORCES IN CLIMBING FLIGHT CLIMB VECTORS WIND EFFECT ON CLIMB ANGLE THRUST AND DRAG POWER AVAILABLE AND REQUIRED TIME TO CLIMB INTEGRATION CLASSIC RATE OF CLIMB PERFORMANCE HODOGRAPH THRUST EFFECTS FOR JETS THRUST EFFECTS FOR PROPS SUBSONIC CLIMB SCHEDULE MINIMUM TIME TO CLIMB SUPERSONIC CLIMB SCHEDULE TYPICAL ENERGY LEVEL CLIMB PATH SPECIFIC EXCESS POWER CURVE REFERRED FUEL FLOW ACTUAL FUEL FLOW MINIMUM FUEL CLIMB SCHEDULE OPTIMAL TIME AND FUEL CLIMBS SAWTOOTH DATA CARD CHECK CLIMB STANDARD DAY RATE OF CLIMB 7.1 7.30 7.14 7.4 7.21 7.13 7.15 7.7 7.22 7.23 7.6 7.14 7.20 7.

48 7.29 7.iv .51 7.46 7.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 7.47 7.50 7.30 ENERGY RELATIONSHIP TO CLIMB INTEGRATION RESULTS FOR DISTANCE REFERRED FUEL USED STANDARD DAY FUEL USED FUEL USED IN CLIMB RATE OF CLIMB FROM SAWTOOTH CLIMBS CLIMB ANGLE FROM SAWTOOTH CLIMBS 7.28 7.26 7.25 7.49 7.52 7.24 7.27 7.

5) 7.6) 7.8) 7.12) 7.W sin γ = W ax g G j R L = W cos γ dV W T T cos α .T .5 (Eq 7.v .3 CCF = 1 V dV 1 + gT dh (Eq 7.7) 7.2) (Eq 7.11) (Eq 7.2 7.D .W sin γ = g =0 G j R dt T Nx (Eq 7.10) 7.T G j R 7.W cos γ + T sin α = W az g G j T cos α .9) (Eq 7.3 dh = Ps dt (Eq 7.D .6 = T cos α .6 7.3 L .3 (Eq 7.4) 7.CLIMB PERFORMANCE CHAPTER 7 EQUATIONS PAGE V E =h+ h 2 T 2g (Eq 7.5 7.1) 7.3) (Eq 7.2 V dV T Ps = dE h = dh + gT dt dt dt dV dV dh = dt dh dt dV dh Ps = dh + V g dh dt dt Ps = dh 1 + V dV g dh dt 1 V dV 1 + gT dh (Eq 7.T .5 (Eq 7.2 7.

20 h Time to Climb = ∫ h 2 1 (Eq 7.14) -D V = dh = Vv dt Nx W T Nx 7.13) -1 Nx 7.12 7.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE T .14 Vv = V sin γ T V hor = V cos γ T Rate of Climb = Ps ( ( 1 dV V T 1+ g dh dV T 1+ V g dh Ps ) ) dh (Eq 7.21 7.24) 7.17) (Eq 7.14 7.19) 7.16) 7.21) 7.6 T γ = sin Nx -D (Eq 7.21 Ps (Eq 7.Preq A W 7.10 h 1 dh = h 1 t= ∫ dh ∫ 0 dh 0 ROC dt (Eq 7.18) (Eq 7.23) 7.20 dh + V dV g T dt = Ps dE = dh + V dV g h dE dt = h (Eq 7.15) V-DV W = P .vi .21 7.22) (Eq 7.20) 7.D = W sin γ (Eq 7.6 V sin γ = W T (Eq 7.6 -D V= T ROC = dh = dt Nx W (Eq 7.

dW = .∫ 1 2 2 E 1 dE dE h h h 1 dW (Eq 7.1 = . f Ps 1 dE = ∫ h E h 1 dE Ps h W .CLIMB PERFORMANCE E h Time to Climb = ∫ E h 2 1 dE Ps h (Eq 7.39 7.37 (Eq 7.26 V E h 2 T =h Test Test + Test 2g ( dh ) dt Ps = Ps Test Test ( 1 V 1+ V T ref dV T g V + dh T ) (∆T Nx (Eq 7. f 1 (Eq 7.31) .25 .25 W W Fuel to Climb = ∫ dW = .27) 7. (Eq 7.38 W Std = Ps Test Std T Std Std Test W V T W Test Std 7.30) 7.29) 7.25) V dV dh T T = + g dW dW E h 1 = d dW dW h dE ( ) V h+ 2 T 7.33) 7.28) E h 2 7.38 2 W ∆D = D Std -D Test = ( 2 2 -W Std Test ) 2 π e AR S γ Pa M (Eq 7.25 Fuel to Climb = ∫ E h W .21 2g (Eq 7.26) 7.∆D) (Eq 7.vii .32) 7.dW dt = f dE dE dt dE Ps h h h dW E h 2 W .

36) 7.38) 7.44 ∆Τ = f ∆H .46 Fuel Used = ∫ W dt f 1 (Eq 7.40) (Eq 7.46) 7.41) W P sin α j (Eq 7.52 ˚C = ˚K .40 2 ∆D = ( W ) (Eq 7.viii .41 7.40 ( dh ) dt γ Std = Ps Std = sin -1 ( ( ) Std 1 V dV T 1 + gT dh ) (Eq 7.W cos2γ Std Std Test Test 2 π e AR ρ Ve S ssl 2 2 2 n -W n2 Std z Std Test z Test 2 π e AR ρ Ve S ssl 7.39) j 7.15 7.34) (Eq 7.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE L = nz W nz = cos γ 2 ∆D = (Eq 7.47 7. 7.45) (Eq 7.42 7.42 L = W cos γ .41 dh dt V T (Eq 7.40 7.T nz = L W nz = cos γ T G G sin α (Eq 7.37) 7.273. ∆T a N t t 2 ( ) Distance = ∫ V cos γ dt T 1 (Eq 7.42) (Eq 7.35) 2 2 cos2γ .43) 7.44) t t 2 .42 7.40 (W ) (Eq 7.

CLIMB PERFORMANCE OAT = f Ta.49) (Eq 7.47) (Eq 7. M ) V = f OAT.52 7. M T ( T ) h=H P +∆ H c ref Pc ( ) Ta T std (Eq 7.50) 7.48) 7.53 Ta = f ( OAT.ix .52 7. M ( ) (Eq 7.53 7.

.

If launching on an intercept. Conditions for best climb angle. Primary emphasis in this chapter is on energy analysis since measuring climb performance in jet aircraft and determining climb performance for various climb schedules is best done through energy methods.1 INTRODUCTION Climb performance is evaluated in various ways depending on the aircraft mission. 6. Evaluate the requirements of pertinent military specifications. Conditions for the shortest time to climb. However.CHAPTER 7 CLIMB PERFORMANCE 7. 3. An interceptor launching to take over a particular combat air patrol (CAP) station is primarily interested in climbing to altitude with the minimum expenditure of fuel. the sawtooth climb method can be used successfully for lower performance aircraft during climb speed determination and is also suited for single engine climb performance evaluation in the takeoff or wave-off configuration. An attack aircraft launching on a strike mission is primarily interested in climbing on a schedule of maximum range per pound of fuel used. the desire is to reach intercept altitude with the best fighting speed or energy in the minimum time. 7. 4. Conditions for best climb rate. This chapter also discusses the sawtooth climb as an alternate test method of determining specific excess power.2 PURPOSE OF TEST The purpose of this test is to determine the following climb performance characteristics: 1. 2. Conditions for minimum fuel used to climb. 7. Different missions may require optimization of other factors during the climb. 5. Climb schedules for the above conditions.1 .

timed climbs through the same altitude band.2. The results of tests are derived from a series of short. dV dV dh = dt dh dt (Eq 7. Ps is calculated by measuring energy height as in Eq 7. then dVT/dt in Eq 7. To express rate of climb potential in terms of P s.1 SAWTOOTH CLIMBS The primary method of determining specific excess power (Ps) is the level acceleration. The test provides limited information on overall climb performance but does establish the best airspeed at which to climb at a specific altitude.3. From the chain rule. The sawtooth climb is more time consuming than the level acceleration run. Sawtooth climb is a secondary method of determining Ps.3 THEORY 7. especially in determining single engine wave-off for multiengine airplanes or climb in the approach configuration for a jet.2 .1 to derive Eq 7. There are conditions where the sawtooth climb is more applicable. which is rarely the case.1) V dV T Ps = dE h = dh + gT dt dt dt (Eq 7. true airspeed (VT) must be evaluated in the climb. dV/dt can be expressed as in Eq 7. except when climbing in the stratosphere on a standard day.3) 7. V E =h+ h 2 T 2g (Eq 7.5.4 and Eq 7.2 is zero.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 7. If true airspeed is constant. Climbing at constant indicated airspeed is not constant VT. The sawtooth climb is one method of obtaining the airspeed schedule for maximum rate of climb.3 and substituted into Eq 7.2) The only time P s is equal to rate of climb is when the climb is done at a constant true airspeed. Climbing at constant Mach number is not constant VT either.1 then taking the time derivative as in Eq 7.

If the aircraft is accelerating during the climb as in a constant indicated airspeed schedule. 1.4) Ps = (Eq 7. A term called the climb correction factor (CCF) represents the values within the brackets of Eq 7.7) Where: CCF Eh g h Ps t V VT Climb correction factor Energy height Gravitational acceleration Tapeline altitude Specific excess power Time Velocity True airspeed There are three cases to consider about the CCF.6) Specific excess power is nearly independent of the climb or acceleration path for modest climb angles. but the actual rate of climb is adjusted by the velocity change along the climb path (dVT/dh).CLIMB PERFORMANCE dV dh Ps = dh + V g dh dt dt dh 1 + V dV g dh dt (Eq 7.3 . the rate of climb potential is: dh = Ps dt 1 V dV 1 + gT dh (Eq 7.5) Knowing Ps and the climb schedule.6 and is useful in evaluating rate of climb. CCF is defined as follows: CCF = 1 V dV 1 + gT dh (Eq 7. CCF < 1 and rate of climb is less than Ps. 7. ft ft/s2 ft ft/s2 s ft/s ft/s.

5 Climb Correction Factor CCF 2.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 2.2 STEADY STATE APPROACH TO CLIMB PERFORMANCE The classical approach to aircraft climb performance problems was to use the static or steady state case. If the aircraft is climbing at a constant true airspeed. True airspeed had to be held constant. The following paragraphs are intended to present a quick overview of the classical approach. and is inadequate for analyzing climb profiles of supersonic aircraft where both true airspeed and altitude change rapidly. CCF > 1 and rate of climb is greater than Ps. If the aircraft is decelerating while climbing. 3. as in a constant Mach number through decreasing temperature.000 ft 1. For supersonic aircraft however.5 1.5 h = 20. the influence of the CCF on rate of climb is significant. Figure 7.0 Constant V . For a low speed aircraft the factor does not have much significance.1 CLIMB CORRECTION FACTOR 7. 7.3.4 .0 1. 2. This approach was derived before the total energy theory was developed.000 ft 0 . One major assumption was the aircraft had no acceleration along the flight path. CCF =1 and rate of climb equals Ps.0 Figure 7.5 0 i Constant M h < 35.5 2.0 Mach Number M 1.1 illustrates CCF as a function of Mach number.

2 FORCES IN CLIMBING FLIGHT Forces perpendicular to the flight path are: L . the equations reduce to: L = W cos γ (Eq 7.10) 7.8) (Eq 7. L αj γ Flight Pat Horizon D T G T sin α G TR j γ TG cos α W j W cos γ W sin γ Figure 7. the engines are closely aligned with the fuselage reference line.5 . and the aircraft is in a steady climb where acceleration parallel flight path (ax) is zero.W sin γ = W ax g G j R (Eq 7.W cos γ + T sin α = W az g G j Forces parallel to the flight path are: T cos α .D .9) By assuming angle of attack (α) is small.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 7.3.2.1 FORCES IN FLIGHT The forces acting on an aircraft in a climb are presented in figure 7.T .2 for review and can be resolved perpendicular and parallel to the flight path. or at a constant true airspeed.

By maximizing specific excess thrust.T .15) Nx W Angle of attack Thrust angle Acceleration parallel flight path Acceleration perpendicular to flight path Drag Rate of climb Flight path angle Lift Gross thrust Net thrust parallel flight path Ram drag Velocity True airspeed Vertical velocity Weight 7.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE dV W T T cos α . If both sides of Eq 7.6 . (Eq 7.14) γ = sin -1 Nx W The term in brackets is specific excess thrust.15.W sin γ = g =0 G j R dt T = T cos α . as Eq 7. a useful expression for γ can be found: T -D (Eq 7. and is graphically shown in figure 7.11) Nx R (Eq 7.13) With true airspeed held constant.12) T Nx . the climb angle is greatest.3.D = W sin γ (Eq 7.T G j (Eq 7. T V sin γ = Where: α αj ax az D dh/dt γ L TG TNx TR V VT Vv W -D V = dh = Vv dt deg deg ft/s2 ft/s2 lb ft/s deg lb lb lb lb ft/s ft/s ft/s lb.D .13 are multiplied by V an expression for rate of climb is developed.

The prime reason for optimizing climb angle might be to gain obstacle clearance during some portion of the flight. dh/dt is positive and a climb results.14.CLIMB PERFORMANCE V Vv γ V Figure 7. the propulsive thrust decreases. As the aircraft climbs. Increasing altitude decreases specific excess thrust and the climb angle.2 CLIMB ANGLE hor As seen in Eq 7.2.7 .4. There is an absolute ceiling where TNx = D and γ = 0. the maximum climb angle must give the most altitude gained for horizontal distance covered.14. γ.3 CLIMB VECTORS Eq 7. Wind is also a factor. 7. Since climb angle is inversely proportional to weight.3. Winds do affect this distance and give apparent changes in γ as depicted in figure 7. A steady wind has no effect on the climb angle of the aircraft relative to the moving air mass. depends on specific excess thrust (TNx D)/W.15 shows if net thrust is greater than drag. 7. Drag remains essentially constant. climb angle decreases as weight increases. the climb angle. However. The effect of increasing weight on climb angle can be evaluated from Eq 7.

8 . The aircraft must be flown at the velocity where maximum excess thrust occurs to achieve the maximum climb angle.D. With thrust augmentation. TNx . This is a classical result and leads to the assumption γmax occurs at VL/Dmax. 7. is a function of airspeed. The net thrust available from a pure turbojet varies little with airspeed at a given altitude. the maximum excess thrust at military thrust occurs close to VL/Dmax. the same can be said for a turbofan.4 WIND EFFECT ON CLIMB ANGLE Excess thrust. A jet lacking thrust augmentation usually climbs at the velocity for minimum drag or minimum thrust required to achieve the maximum climb angle.5. In general. γmax may occur over an airspeed band. thrust available varies with airspeed and γmax occurs at other airspeeds. But.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE V γ Head Wind No Wind Tail Wind Figure 7. In figure 7.

or tan γ = 1 (45 deg).2.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 L D 1 max TN max Thrust or Drag . drag. The gradient can be determined from figure 7.3 by dividing Vv by Vhor or by measuring tan γ.kn V T 500 600 Figure 7. whether specific excess thrust is measured directly or calculated from independent estimates of thrust.3 CLIMB GRADIENT Climb gradient is the altitude gained for the distance traveled.9 .3.5 THRUST AND DRAG Specific excess thrust determines climb angle.lb x 10 T or D 3 TN Buffet Limit mil 100 200 300 400 True Airspeed . and weight. 7. The gradient is usually expressed in percent where 100% occurs when Vv = Vhor. 7.

Excess power is also defined as the difference between the power available to do work in a unit of time and the work done by drag per unit time. In specific excess power. dh/dt is rate of climb at constant airspeed.16.6 depicts a typical curve of power available and required. Power available can be expressed as net thrust times velocity (TNx x V) and power lost to drag as drag times velocity (D x V).FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 7. depends upon specific excess power. This is similar to excess thrust.10 .4 RATE OF CLIMB Eq 7. dh/dt.Preq A W Nx Nx W (Eq 7.3.15 can be rewritten as Eq 7.2. kn lb. 7. T ROC = dh = dt Where: D dh/dt TNx PA Preq ROC V W -D V= T V-DV W = P .16) Drag Rate of climb Net thrust parallel flight path Power available Power required Rate of climb Velocity Weight lb ft/s lb ft-lb/s ft-lb/s ft/s ft/s. Figure 7. which was defined as the difference between net thrust available and drag (thrust required) at a specific weight.2 shows rate of climb. Then Eq 7.

11 P R Bo t h . The slope of the curve is directly proportional to the magnitude of thrust.6. For the turboprop.6 POWER AVAILABLE AND REQUIRED The power required curve is derived by multiplying V by the drag at that speed. Depending on the exact shape of the turboprop thrust curve. the thrust is nearly constant so power available is a straight line originating at V=0.kn V T Figure 7. the thrust tends to decrease with an increase in velocity as also seen in figure 7. the maximum value of excess thrust might occur at a speed less than VL/Dmax and close to the speed for minimum thrust horsepower required. The power available curve is derived by multiplying V by the thrust at that speed. For the military power turbojet. Propeller efficiencies also account for part 7.CLIMB PERFORMANCE Prop And Jet At Same Weight P A P rop Power Max ROC Jet AJ et Max ROC Prop L D P max True Airspeed .

15. 7. Weight affects rate of climb directly and in the same manner as it does climb angle. True airspeed strongly affects rate of climb performance since thrust and drag are functions of velocity. and specific excess power directly depends upon true airspeed according to Eq 7.12 . Increasing weight with no change in excess power reduces rate of climb. Maximum rate of climb for the jet occurs at much higher true airspeed than that for L/Dmax.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE of the curve shape. Wind affects rate of climb negligibly unless gradient and direction changes are large within the air mass. The service ceiling and combat ceiling. Continuous variations in rate of climb must be attained through integration as in Eq 7. That value pertains only to the corresponding altitude.3.17. are also finite altitudes. Rate of climb at the absolute ceiling goes to zero when TNx = D and excess power is minimum.17) Where: h ROC t Tapeline altitude Rate of climb Time ft ft/s s. defined as the altitudes where 100 ft/min and 500 ft/min rates of climb can be maintained. h h t = ∫ 1 dh = ∫ 1 dh 0 dh 0 ROC dt (Eq 7. there is one velocity which yields maximum rate of climb. Altitude has an effect on rate of climb similar to its effect upon climb angle.2. The slope of the curve for power available changes as the true airspeed changes.5 TIME TO CLIMB The rates of climb discussed are instantaneous values. At each altitude. 7.

7 TIME TO CLIMB INTEGRATION The method is limited by the fact that more information is needed than just the altitude change with time. A more accurate method to determine time to climb is discussed in section 7.3 7.ft h Figure 7.17 is not usually available as an analytical function of altitude.CLIMB PERFORMANCE The term dh/dt in Eq 7.8. The determination of time to climb then can only be determined graphically as in figure 7.6 SUMMARY OF STEADY STATE CLIMB A curve of vertical velocity versus horizontal velocity can be used to summarize the steady state performance.3. A rate of climb curve is shown in figure 7.13 . Both altitude and airspeed must be specified.3. 1 dh/dt ∆h Tapeline Altitude .7.2. as well as the climb path itself and actual rate of climb at every point. 7.

FIXED WING PERFORMANCE

Rate of Climb - ft/min ROC

Max Rate Of Climb

**in rig hO ug o hr Speed For tT Maximum en g Climb Angle an T
**

Vx Vy

Speed For Maximum Rate Of Climb

Maximum Level Flight Airspeed

V

H

True Airspeed - kn V

T

Figure 7.8 CLASSIC RATE OF CLIMB If figure 7.8 is converted into vertical velocity versus horizontal velocity using Eqs 7.17 and 7.18, climb performance can be summarized graphically as in figure 7.9 for the same speed range. Vv = V sin γ

T

(Eq 7.18) (Eq 7.19)

V

hor

= V cos γ

T

Where: γ Vhor VT Vv

Flight path angle Horizontal velocity True airspeed Vertical velocity

deg ft/s ft/s ft/s.

7.14

CLIMB PERFORMANCE

3 Vertical Velocity - ft/s Vv

4

2 5

γ

2

1

Horizontal Velocity - ft/s V

hor

6

Figure 7.9 PERFORMANCE HODOGRAPH A radius vector from the origin to any point on the plot represents the true airspeed and makes an angle to the horizontal equal to the actual climb angle at that speed. From figure 7.9: Point 1 Point 2 Point 3 Point 4 Point 5 Point 6 7.3.2.7 Maximum level flight airspeed Climb speed at the given rate of climb Speed for maximum rate of climb Speed for maximum climb angle Stall speed Descent THRUST EFFECTS VH VT Vy Vx Vs NA.

The discussion to this point deals with one set of power parameters; however, rate of climb is calculated using Eq 7.16 and changes with throttle position or net thrust parallel to the flight path, TNx.

7.15

FIXED WING PERFORMANCE T ROC = dh = dt Where: D TNx h PA Preq ROC V W -D V=

Nx

T

Nx

V-DV W =

W

P - Preq A W

(Eq 7.16)

Drag Net thrust parallel flight path Tapeline altitude Power available Power required Rate of climb Velocity Weight

lb lb ft ft-lb/s ft-lb/s ft/s ft/s lb.

From a study of drag characteristics for jets, the maximum climb angle speed (Vx) C occurs at L CD max, which is the minimum drag condition. The speed is independent of power setting. The speed for best climb rate, Vy, increases with increasing thrust. Figure 7.10 illustrates the effects discussed.

7.16

10 THRUST EFFECTS FOR JETS For the propeller aircraft.ft/s V T Figure 7. 7. Vx decreases with the increased power setting as the climb progresses. Vy. the best rate of climb speed. does not change with increasing power.CLIMB PERFORMANCE C C L D max Vx Vy Rate of Climb .11 shows the result.ft/s ROC Vy Vx Min Drag True Airspeed . Figure 7. The speed for maximum climb angle.17 .

ft/s ROC Vy Vx True Airspeed .FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 3 C 2 L D max C Vy Vx Rate of Climb .ft/s V T Figure 7. The treatment starts with the subsonic jet and advances to supersonic speeds.3.18 . 7. Each flight requires a climb and if a schedule is selected based on measured Ps data. the results could be quite good.3 TOTAL ENERGY APPROACH TO CLIMB PERFORMANCE Climb schedules can be determined by randomly flying a large number of climb schedules and picking the best schedule based on the flight results. and specifically climb schedules.11 THRUST EFFECTS FOR PROPS 7. Schedules based on less information would yield poor results. There are more scientific approaches and this section uses the information attained from the excess power chapter to determine climb performance.

3. or true airspeed. 7.12 SUBSONIC CLIMB SCHEDULE The peaks of the curves represent the speed at which the maximum specific excess power occurs at each altitude.1 TIME BASED CLIMB SCHEDULE Ps data taken from acceleration runs.12. with lines of constant energy height as shown in figure 7. sawtooth climbs.19 .ft h Max Rate Maximum Energy Constant Ps Constant Eh Max Rate Tapeline Altitude . Maximum Energy Constant Ps Tapeline Altitude . which is seen as an increase in total energy as shown in Eq 7. Excess power must be divided between the requirements of climbing and acceleration.ft h Constant E h True Airspeed . as altitude increases. The maximum points occur at increasing airspeed.3.1.ft 2 V 2g Figure 7.ft/s V T Specific Kinetic Energy . Each peak is also the speed for maximum instantaneous rate of climb at that altitude for an aircraft flying at constant true airspeed. thus. acceleration is required along the flight path. or other methods can be worked up on a cross-plot of altitude and Mach number.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 7.

By flying the points where the Ps contours are tangent to the lines of constant energy height.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 2 T V E =h+ h 2g (Eq 7. The plot is also shown as a function of specific potential energy (h) and specific V2 kinetic energy ( ).21) 7.1) Where: Eh g h VT Energy height Gravitational acceleration Tapeline altitude True airspeed ft ft/s2 ft ft/s.3. or maximum rate of total energy addition. which cannot be easily obtained from figure 7. To put Eq 7. a schedule for the minimum time to achieve an energy state. The integration will not work for any portion of the schedule where altitude is not increasing. is developed as the optimum energy climb schedule.3.1 SPECIFIC ENERGY VERSUS TOTAL ENERGY Time to climb is given in Eq 7.20) h Time to Climb = ∫ h 2 ( 1 dV T 1+ V g dh Ps ) (Eq 7.17. This curve may be useful if the points of tangency are not well 2g defined. The integration requires determining the actual rate of climb at every point.20 .17 in more useful terms the following equations are used: V dV dE T T h = dh + g dt dt dt Ps = (Eq 7. 7.2) Rate of Climb = Ps ( 1 dV T 1+ V g dh ) dh (Eq 7.12.1.

22) Using the differential form of Eq 7.CLIMB PERFORMANCE dh + V dV g T dt = Ps (Eq 7.21. dE = dh + V dV g h dE dt = (Eq 7.24) Time to Climb = ∫ E h 2 1 dE Ps h (Eq 7. time to climb can be expressed in terms which can be graphically integrated from figure 7.23) h Ps E h (Eq 7.21 .25) 1 Where: Eh Eh1 Eh2 g h h1 h2 Ps ROC t V VT Energy height Energy height at start of climb Energy height at end of climb Gravitational acceleration Tapeline altitude Tapeline altitude start of climb Tapeline altitude end of climb Specific excess power Rate of climb Time Velocity True airspeed ft ft ft ft/s2 ft ft ft ft/s ft/s s ft/s ft/s.1 and substituting it into equation 7. Results for both the maximum rate of climb schedule and the maximum energy climb schedule are shown in figure 7. 7.12.13.

13 MINIMUM TIME TO CLIMB The maximum energy climb schedule gives a path defined by altitude and Mach number for transitioning from one energy level to a higher level in the minimum time. particularly if the energy levels are close together. However. and without loss. 7. Every point on the maximum energy climb schedule represents the maximum P s for that energy height which will get the aircraft to an energy level faster than any other schedule.s/ft 1 Ps Climb te Of a um R Maxim Climb nergy um E Maxim Time To Climb E h1 Energy Height . but breaks down when they are not. the potential energy is lower than in the maximum rate of climb with kinetic energy making up the difference. the potential gains by flying this schedule can be negated by the real process of exchanging kinetic and potential energies.ft E h E h2 Figure 7. The maximum energy climb schedule will give the minimum time between two energy levels. For transitions between widely separated energy levels. the maximum energy climb schedule is nearly optimal and is recommended for jets climbing to high altitude.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE Inverse of Specific Excess Power . The climb schedule actually recommended is often a compromise between the theoretical maximum rate and maximum energy schedules.22 . and may be further modified by considerations such as providing an airspeed or Mach number profile which is easy to fly. however. along lines of constant energy height. Theoretical treatments usually assume an ideal model in which the airplane can translate instantaneously. The ideal model works well when the end points of the energy climb are near the maximum energy climb schedule.

This optimum energy climb path is also known as the Rutowski climb path. the energy schedule becomes more significant. However.14) consists of four segments to reach energy state E in minimum time. The subsonic climb segment follows a path similar to the one illustrated to the tropopause at state C. Note in this example the optimum climb path includes an acceleration in a dive. The path (Figure 7. For a supersonic aircraft. This subsonic climb is usually a nearly constant Mach number schedule. the energy method works well. The acceleration in the dive is actually part of the optimum climb path.ft h A 7. Segment DE is the supersonic climb to the final energy state desired at E. Figure 7. Note D Optimum Energy Climb Constant E h Tapeline Altitude .14 SUPERSONIC CLIMB SCHEDULE If the final speed is near the aircraft’s maximum speed. Segment AB represents a constant altitude acceleration from V = 0 to climb speed at state B. the large speed increase necessary renders the conventional method of using the peaks of the Ps curves useless.14 illustrates a typical climb schedule for a supersonic aircraft. after its developer. An ideal pushover or dive is carried out at constant Eh from C to D.CLIMB PERFORMANCE and/or providing a Mach number relative to maximum range or maximum endurance airspeed. Constant Ps E 0 200 100 C 200 300 400 500 B Mach Number M Figure 7.23 .

15 TYPICAL ENERGY LEVEL CLIMB PATH 7.6 0.8 2. Perhaps the most expeditious path is the one toward the highest Ps contour available without decreasing Eh. Path CD in figure 7.4 0.2 0.0 2.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE segments BC and DE pass through points on Ps contours which are tangent to lines of constant Eh. the conventional schedule may still be useful if a profile is desired to reach maximum range airspeed at altitude.2 Mach Number M Figure 7.14 illustrates a typical transition using this idea. one in a subsonic region and the other in the supersonic region.8 1. However. Constant E h 70 Tapeline Altitude . The assumption implies the climb should be subsonic until intercepting an Eh level tangent to two Ps contours of equal value.0 1.4 1. There is no complete agreement on when to start the pushover. A climb schedule defined by the conventional method of the peaks of the Ps curves at each altitude is undesirable because of the large speed change involved if a speed near the maximum is desired at the end of the climb.15 illustrates the difficulty in choosing the transition paths when Ps contours become irregular in the transonic region.ft x 10 3 h 60 50 40 30 20 10 Constant Ps Optimum Energy Climb Path 0. When and how to transition from the subsonic segment to the supersonic segment may be an issue if the Ps contours near M = 1 are poorly defined. Figure 7.2 1.6 1.24 .

26) Fuel burned in a climb can be determined by integrating Eq 7. dE = d dW dW h ( ) V h+ 2 T 2g V dV T = dh + gT dW dW (Eq 7. The sum of both terms equals the change in specific energy with respect to fuel used as in Eq 7.15.3.1 = . The abrupt discontinuities in angle of attack and attitude are avoided in the actual climb.2 FUEL BASED CLIMB SCHEDULE The aircraft mission may require the expenditure of minimum fuel to achieve a given energy level. W W E 2 h Fuel to Climb = ∫ dW = .26 as was done in determining time to climb.27) A relationship of fuel flow to specific excess power can be written as Eq 7.25 .CLIMB PERFORMANCE Notice in figure 7.dW dt = f dE dE dt dE Ps h h h dW W . where transitions are assumed to be instantaneous.28) 7. The energy approach to climb performance can also be used to determine how much total energy is added per pound of fuel consumed. 7. real transitions as opposed to ideal zooms and dives. result in a climb path with the corners rounded off. and the change in airspeed per pound of fuel in accelerations is dV/dW. . (Eq 7.26.∫ 1 2 E 1 dE dE h h h 1 dW (Eq 7. Change in altitude per pound of fuel used is dh/dW in climbs.28.3.dW = . This requires specific energy to be differentiated with respect to the change in aircraft gross weight due to fuel used.

27 can be rewritten as follows: E h Fuel to Climb = ∫ E h 2 W .FIXED WING PERFORMANCE Eq 7.16. From acceleration run data. E h f Ps 1 dE = ∫ h E h 2 1 dE Ps h W .ft/s Ps Figure 7. can be generated. f 1 (Eq 7.ft/s lb/h to Fuel Flow Ps Mach Number M Specific Excess Power . f . Ratio of Specific Excess Power . Evaluating Eq 7.29) Where: Eh g h Ps t V VT W ˙ Wf Energy height Gravitational acceleration Tapeline altitude Specific excess power Time Velocity True airspeed Weight Fuel flow ft ft/s2 ft ft/s s ft/s kn lb lb/h.17.29 requires combining P s and fuel flow data from other tests. and referred fuel flow curve.26 W . the Ps curve similar to the solid line in figure 7.16 7. similar to figure 7.

the outside air temperature (OAT) and referred fuel flow can be determined versus Mach number. 7. W f δ T θ T Outside Air Temperature OAT Figure 7.17 REFERRED FUEL FLOW For a given altitude (δ) and temperature (θ).lb/h .27 . For the same acceleration run.CLIMB PERFORMANCE SPECIFIC EXCESS POWER CURVE Fuel Flow Referred To Total Conditions . the actual fuel flow for standard conditions can be determined as shown in figure 7.18.

Since fuel flow increases with increasing speed. all the s curves for each altitude are ˙ Wf determined.19. 7. the peak of P the s curve occurs at a slower speed than the peak of the Ps curve in figure 7. W f Mach Number M Figure 7.16. ˙ Wf P To develop the minimum fuel climb schedule.16.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE Fuel Flow .16 by P the corresponding points on figure 7.28 .18 ACTUAL FUEL FLOW ˙ The ratio of Ps to Wf can be determined by dividing each point on figure 7.lb/h . The results are cross-plotted as shown in figure 7.18 and plotting s versus Mach number as the ˙ Wf dashed curve in figure 7.

29 .20 depicts a typical result given the same aircraft following an optimal time climb and an optimal fuel climb.ft h Constant E h P Constant . Figure 7.2. 7.CLIMB PERFORMANCE Tapeline Altitude .3. s W f Minimum Fuel Climb Path Mach Number M Figure 7.19 appears very much like the time based climb in figure 7.19 MINIMUM FUEL CLIMB SCHEDULE 7.3.14.1 TIME VERSUS FUEL BASED CLIMB The climb path based on minimum fuel in figure 7.

actual down range distance traveled 7. However.3. and an ideal zoom to reach the end point.30 .2 MAXIMUM RANGE CLIMB SCHEDULE The maximum range climb schedule should achieve maximum range for fuel used during the climb to a desired altitude and cruise speed. the minimum fuel climb approximates the no-wind maximum range per pound of fuel. There are sophisticated mathematical techniques which can be used to determine a theoretical solution. the optimal minimum time climb path. In practice.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 60 Tapeline Altitude .ft x 10 h 3 50 40 30 20 10 Minimum Fuel Minimum Time 0. 7. an ideal dive.20 OPTIMAL TIME AND FUEL CLIMBS The optimal minimum fuel climb path lies above. if the cruise speed is near the climb speed for an energy minimum fuel climb.8 Mach Number M Figure 7.6 1. The initial point of the cruise leg is defined by an altitude and an airspeed for a particular gross weight. In reality.4 1. is close to the optimal time schedule. The schedule which gets to that energy level with minimum fuel used. but roughly parallel.2. the optimal fuel path is easier to achieve since the optimal time case requires an ideal climb.3.0 1.

4 TEST METHODS AND TECHNIQUES 7. Power setting is defined by the scope of the test but is the same for each run. are not characteristic provided the peaks of the ˙ Wf too sharp. with respect to energy height.1 SAWTOOTH CLIMB A series of timed climbs are made at different speeds from a point below the test altitude to a point above it. The altitude increment is about 1000 ft either side of a target altitude. becomes the test criterion. As in the cruise phase. which ever is less. until Ps decreases and time. A typical flight data card is shown in figure 7. Target Vo Vo Initial HP Final HP ∆t Fuel OAT Misc Figure 7. choose the climb band symmetrically about the target altitude. Speeds are chosen to bracket the expected best climb speed of the aircraft. an incremental decrease in speed increases range over that obtained from the no-wind schedule. full power is used.31 . Normally. or a height change attainable in two minutes.3).21 SAWTOOTH DATA CARD Climbs are performed at the same power setting and aircraft configuration as used in the check climb (paragraph 7. wind affects the range in a climb. 7.4. When time is the criterion.4. The same altitude band is used for each climb.CLIMB PERFORMANCE in the climb is considered when optimizing the overall range problem which also includes cruise and descent. For a head wind. For a tail wind. an incremental increase in speed for the climb schedule slightly improves the range Ps curves. 7.21. rather than altitude gain.

W. time.4. examine the plot for points which need repeating.1.21 with the target indicated airspeed included for each point. see paragraph 8. and a descending turn is initialized to get the aircraft below the altitude band for another run. Once through the altitude increment. 7. Power is applied and final trim adjustments are made before reaching the lower limit of the altitude band being measured. except in reverse.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE The aircraft is first trimmed in the configuration desired while still well below the nominal altitude. If Ps is negative and the airplane is descending. or two minutes whichever comes first. torque. and either outside air temperature or time of day so temperature can be obtained by other meteorological methods. Time: Record elapsed time from the beginning of the altitude band to the end. Confine the flights to the bounds of a limited geographical area since the primary concern is the shape of the curve obtained rather than the magnitude.1 DATA REQUIRED 1. engine RPM. For each altitude.1. keep a running plot of observed time to climb versus Vo and before leaving the test altitude. Climb perpendicular to the prevailing winds to minimize the effects of wind shear.32 . a full power unaccelerated minimum speed point. Altitude: Record the observed pressure altitude HPo band for each point. etc. On the back of the data card. The description above is only applicable when Ps is determined to be positive. As many points as possible are flown at each altitude. The exact time of entering and leaving the altitude band is recorded by a stopwatch or an instrumentation system.4. then the same flight test technique applies. a standard data card is prepared similar to figure 7. 2. data are recorded. and a maximum speed point are obtained at the test altitude in order to complete the curve. Record actual in-flight Vo. fuel counts or fuel remaining. In addition. The card can be expanded to record other parameters such as angle of attack. For a description of the sawtooth descent flight test technique. 7.

7.4.4.1. DATA REQUIREMENTS Test altitude band ± 1000 ft about a target altitude. 3.3 1. angle of attack. Normal acceleration ± 0. Vo ± 1 kn with smooth corrections. Velocity: Record observed airspeed. If a small airspeed error is made while setting the airplane up.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 3.33 .4. (May be obtained from direct observation). 7. 7. OAT or Ta: Record ambient air temperature from on-board instrumentation at target altitude. 5. Observe airspeed limits when in the powered approach configuration and engine limits at the selected thrust setting. 7.2 TEST CRITERIA Allow sufficient altitude for the engine(s) to reach normal operating temperatures and the airplane to be completely stabilized at the desired airspeed before entering the data band. rather than try to correct it and risk aborting the entire run. Fuel weight: Record the fuel remaining to determine aircraft gross weight. 2.1. 6. Miscellaneous: Record other information desired such as RPM.1 g. Vo.1. 4. Smoothness is just as important as in acceleration runs and for the same reasons. it is better to maintain the incorrect speed as accurately as possible. and torque for a turboprop.4 SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS There are no unique hazards or safety precautions associated with sawtooth climbs. Consider low altitude stall potential in slow speed climb tests and Vmc for multi-engine aircraft.

Time to climb. data cards are prepared to record the climb data as in figure 7. temperature. a mechanical recording means is necessary to obtain simultaneous reading of the many parameters of interest. Fuel used. angle of attack. 3. data may be obtained on various engine parameters such as engine speed. and any other desired parameters. The general method is to climb the aircraft to just below the maximum ceiling while maintaining precisely a predetermined climb schedule. speed.4.2 CHECK CLIMB TEST The check climb test is flown to compare the standard day climb performance of an aircraft in a specific configuration to results predicted from sawtooth climbs or acceleration runs. a schedule recommended by the manufacturer. These are useful to the analyst but are secondary to the three main parameters. For most jet aircraft. In addition. 2. gross thrust. Specify the schedule flown on each climb performance chart. After the schedule to be flown is determined. exhaust gas temperature.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 7. etc.22. The three main areas of investigation are: 1. Record data at approximately equal increments of altitude and include time. Distance traveled. 7. fuel flow.34 . or some other schedule for which climb performance is of interest. This schedule may be a best climb schedule as obtained by flight test. engine pressure ratio.

and acceleration to climb schedule whenever conditions permit. Record fuel remaining and time for start. taxi. light winds. and fuel density are extremely important to climb tests. 7. data are recorded every 1000 to 2000 ft. and stable temperature gradients from ground level to the aircraft’s maximum ceiling is desirable.CLIMB PERFORMANCE t Prior to Start Start Taxi Takeoff t H Po NA Fuel temp Fuel density OAT or Ta Fuel remaining NA NA NA Vo target NA NA NA Vo actual OAT or Ta Fuel remaining Misc Figure 7. If the anticipated rate of climb is low. fuel weight. Plan the flight to climb perpendicular to the wind direction. The interval is adjusted as the rate of climb decreases with altitude.22 CHECK CLIMB Adjust target points for instrument error and position error for both the airspeed indicator and altimeter. fuel and weigh the aircraft prior to commencement of tests. every 5000 ft is sufficient. An area of smooth air. Since gross weight. If the rate of climb is high. The test area can be sampled via a survey balloon or another aircraft for wind and temperature data.35 . takeoff. Fuel samples are taken and tested for temperature and density.

Intercept the climb at the break off pressure altitude and airspeed after re-establishing attitude and stabilizing the climb.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE Establish level flight as low as possible on climb heading. and as the climb speed is approached. stop the rotation. maintaining a precise speed schedule becomes difficult. If corrections become necessary. time. if possible. If the rate of climb is high. noting Vo. fuel. Wind gradients appear as sudden airspeed changes. but immediate attitude correction. the best entry is achieved by first stabilizing in level flight with partial power at some speed below the scheduled climb speed. trim the aircraft. and rotate the aircraft simultaneously to maintain airspeed. Trim the aircraft for hands-off flight. If the wind gradient effect subsides. Maneuver as required and re-intercept the climb schedule as soon as possible to minimize gross weight change. stop the climb at a given pressure altitude. If the climb must be interrupted. At high altitudes. apply power. During the climb. apply an appropriate corrective action. and distance if available. precise control. If these affect the climb speed schedule. Descend below the altitude at which the climb was stopped. a better entry can be achieved by stabilizing on the target speed 1000 ft below entry altitude. A slight rate of change of indicated airspeed implies a much larger rate of change of kinetic energy. 7. advance the power smoothly. it may be necessary to substitute the aircraft attitude indicator for the external horizon during initial portions of the climb. the appropriate corrective action is a small. and constant attention to trim. avoid over controlling due to the hysteresis in the airspeed indicator. As the desired power setting is reached. The best way to cope is to avoid large corrections by a rapid cross-check. Maintain the climb schedule to within 5 kn.36 . If rate of climb is fairly low. When preparations are complete and the aircraft is trimmed. When all preparations are complete and the data recorder is running. A rapid cross-check between external horizon and the airspeed indicator is required. at which time the aircraft is approximately established on the climb schedule. If the pitch attitude is very steep. rotate to intercept and maintain the climb schedule. Any undesirable trend is difficult to stop since the aerodynamic controls are less effective.

Time (t). Observed airspeed (Vo). engine torque and engine shaft horsepower (ESHP) are adjusted in the climb. Distance (d).2.1 SAWTOOTH CLIMB The sawtooth climb data is reduced similar to the acceleration runs. 2. The engine controls have to be managed to ensure optimum climb power is maintained.4.01 M.3 DATA REQUIREMENTS 1. Miscellaneous as desired.4. 2.5.5 Airspeed ± 5 kn or 0.1 DATA REQUIRED Record the following data at each climb increment which should be as often as possible but no greater than each 5000 ft or 2 minutes for hand held data: 1. 6. Observed pressure altitude (HPo). 7. but there are some additional correction factors necessitated by this test method. 4. 7. 1.2.0. nz ± 0. 5. 3.CLIMB PERFORMANCE The test for a turboprop aircraft is identical to the jet test. DATA REDUCTION 7. Temperature (OAT or Ta). Fuel remaining (Wf).1 g.2 1. 7. Keep turns to a minimum and use less than 10 degrees bank to keep nz near No more than 30 degrees heading change. TEST CRITERIA Maintain coordinated wings level flight. or start and end fuel weight. In this case however. 7. 7. 3.4.37 . 2.2. 7.

31) Energy height Test energy height Gravitational acceleration Tapeline altitude Test tapeline altitude Specific excess power 7.38 . since a small altitude band is chosen.30) The slope of Eh versus time as the climb passes through the reference altitude (HPref) is P s(Test).2) Eh for the end points of each sawtooth climb segment are determined from: V E h 2 T =h Test Test + Test 2g (Eq 7. dVT/dh is computed from VT(end) .20 yields: ( dh ) dt Where: Eh EhTest g h hTest Ps = Ps Test Test ( 1 V 1+ T ref dV T g dh ) ft ft ft/s2 ft ft ft/s (Eq 7.VT(start) divided by altitude change. In a similar way. the average slope is defined by Eh(end) .Eh(start) divided by elapsed time.20 expresses test day rate of climb in terms of Ps (which is independent of the climb path) and dVT/dh (which defines the climb path).FIXED WING PERFORMANCE Eq 7. Rate of Climb = Ps ( 1 dV T 1+ V g dh ) (Eq 7.20) Recall: V dV dE T T h = dh + g dt dt dt Ps = (Eq 7. Substituting these values into Eq 7. True airspeed is obtained at the reference altitude (VTRef) by linear interpolation between the end points. In practice.

5.32) Where: ∆D ∆TNx PsStd PsTest VTStd VTTest WStd WTest 7.39 . The drag correction used in the level acceleration data reduction is as follows: 2 W ∆D = D Std -D Test = ( 2 2 -W Std Test ) 2 π e AR S γ Pa M (Eq 7.1 Test specific excess power Time Velocity True airspeed Reference true airspeed Test true airspeed ft/s s ft/s ft/s ft/s ft/s.33) 7.5.CLIMB PERFORMANCE PsTest t V VT VTref VTTest 7.1.∆D) (Eq 7.2 Standard drag minus test drag Standard net thrust parallel flight path minus test net thrust Standard specific excess energy Test specific excess energy Standard true airspeed Test true airspeed Standard weight Test weight DRAG CORRECTION lb lb ft/s ft/s ft/s ft/s lb lb. SPECIFIC EXCESS POWER CORRECTION PsTest is next corrected to standard conditions.1. The correction is carried out exactly as it was for the level acceleration data with the exception of the correction for the change in induced drag: W Ps Std V Std = Ps Test T V + Std T Std Test W V T W (∆T Test Std Nx . standard weight and temperature at HP ref.

the normal load factor is the cosine of the climb angle: nz = cos γ (Eq 7.10) (Eq 7. as: 2 ∆D = (W 2 2 cos2γ .W cos2γ Std Std Test Test 2 π e AR ρ Ve S ssl ) (Eq 7. even if the thrust vector is aligned with the flight path (TNx sin αj = 0) the lift is not equal to the weight.35) (Eq 7.8) The drag correction for a climb can now be written. Figure 7. assuming a parabolic drag polar. nz = 1 (level flight).40 .34) (Eq 7. 2. since: L = nz W For straight flight.36) Or: 7. and zero acceleration: L = W cos γ Also.W cos γ + T sin α = W az g G j For TG sin αj = 0. Summing the vertical forces: L . 3.2 shows in a climb. L = W.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE The following assumptions are made: 1. T sin αj = 0 (no thrust lift).

41 . the standard rate of climb is a function of itself.32 to yield the first iteration of PsStd.36.39) deg ft/s2 lb lb lb deg ft/s2 Thrust angle Aspect ratio Acceleration perpendicular to flight path Drag Standard drag Test drag Oswald’s efficiency factor Flight path angle Ratio of specific heats Gravitational acceleration 7. where γTest is computed from the test results. The induced drag correction obtained is substituted in Eq 7. In other words. an iterative method is necessary to solve Eq 7.36. which is in turn substituted in Eq 7. Therefore. γStd in Eq 7.39: ( dh ) dt = Ps Std Std γ Where: αj AR az D DStd DTest e γ g Std = sin -1 ( ) ( ) 1 V dV T 1 + gT dh dh dt V T (Eq 7. For the first approximation set γStd = γTest.37) In applying either Eq 7. However.36. the requirement is to find the drag correction in order to compute the corrected rate of climb.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 2 ∆D = ( W 2 2 2 n -W n2 Std z Std Test z Test 2 π e AR ρ Ve S ssl ) (Eq 7. and calculate the induced drag correction from Eq 7.38) (Eq 7.37.38 to give the first iteration value of rate of climb and the first iteration of standard day climb angle.36 or Eq 7. the corrected rate of climb is implicit in the γStd (standard flight path angle) term of the equation. in applying Eq 7.

Eq 7.2. this situation is not likely to occur under the conditions in which sawtooth climbs test techniques are chosen.42 . This condition is not generally true.5. at low speed and high angle of attack. 7. though the errors introduced by this assumption are small enough to be neglected for most cases.3 THRUST LIFT CORRECTION All the previous corrections assumed no contribution to lift from the inclination of the thrust line to the flight path. However.1.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE γStd γTest L M nz nzStd nzTest π Pa ρssl S TG Ve VT W WStd WTest Standard flight path angle Test flight path angle Lift Mach number Normal acceleration Standard normal acceleration Test normal acceleration Constant Ambient pressure Standard sea level air density Wing area Gross thrust Equivalent airspeed True airspeed Weight Standard weight Test weight deg deg lb g g g psf 0. However. as shown in figure 7. thrust lift must be taken into consideration. γ is small and the iteration closes quickly. For airplanes with modest climb capabilities.0023769 slug/ft3 ft2 lb ft/s ft/s lb lb lb. For steep climb angles the situation is different and as γ approaches 90˚ the iteration may become unstable. This value of γ then becomes γStd in the induced drag correction and the iteration is repeated until γStd is no longer changing.8 yields: 7.

T sin α G j (Eq 7.CLIMB PERFORMANCE L = W cos γ .41) sin α nz = cos γ - G W j (Eq 7.42) The equation for the sum of the forces in the horizontal direction is affected since: T Nx = T cos α .32.43 .∆D) (Eq 7. both the ∆TNx and ∆D terms are affected by thrust lift.40) Since induced drag depends on normal acceleration: nz = L W T (Eq 7. W Ps Std V Std = Ps Test T V + Std T Std Test W V T W (∆T Test Std Nx .T G j R (Eq 7.12) In Eq 7.32) Where: αj ∆D ∆TNx γ L nz PsStd PsTest TG TNx TR VTStd VTTest Thrust angle Standard drag minus test drag Standard net thrust parallel flight path minus test net thrust Flight path angle Lift Normal acceleration Standard specific excess power Test specific excess power Gross thrust Net thrust parallel flight path Ram drag Standard true airspeed Test true airspeed deg lb lb deg lb g ft/s ft/s lb lb lb ft/s ft/s 7.

23.1. can be minimized by performing the tests as close to the reference altitude as safety and operational restrictions permit. This will again involve the climb angle iteration since the changes in rate of climb and true airspeed will change the climb angle. ∆T a N P ( ) lb ft ˚C.44 . γ.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE W WStd WTest Weight Standard weight Test weight lb lb lb. The corrected results are presented as shown in figure 7. (Eq 7. ∆Τ = f ∆H . An engine thrust model is used to calculate the change in net thrust due to changing altitude and temperature at constant Ve. in the form of rate of climb potential (i. 7. α j.4 ALTITUDE CORRECTION The foregoing corrections allow Ps. These analytical corrections to thrust. The climb angle. the α j variation from test day to standard day is needed. and the iterative corrections to drag.e rate of climb corrected for increasing true airspeed) to be plotted for standard conditions.43) Where: TN HP Ta Net thrust Pressure altitude Ambient temperature The rate of climb is computed for the new altitude using this thrust correction. To apply this correction. which will in turn affect the induced drag.5. It may be necessary to refer these results to a new altitude. To simplify things. and the thrust angle. Constant weight and constant Ve correction are used to minimize the change in drag. For example single-engine climb or waveoff performance at 5000 ft can be used to compute data for standard conditions at sea level. both vary during the iteration process of determining standard day rate of climb. 7. α j is assumed to be small enough to neglect its effect.

however.kn VT Figure 7.ft/min ROC Sea Level STD Weight STD Day 5000' True Airspeed . etc. This section contains a brief summary of the assumptions and logic which might be used. the operating system is invisible to the user.23 STANDARD DAY RATE OF CLIMB 7. This program is a subset to an energy analysis program which also calculates Ps from level acceleration runs. are entered. Time to climb is calculated as follows: 7.1 ENERGY ANALYSIS The purpose of the computer data reduction from energy analysis for climbs is to automatically calculate fuel.5. 7. time and distance.45 . Detailed instructions on the use of the particular computer or program are assumed to be available for the computer program. Basic data such as aircraft type. energy analysis pertaining to climbs is reviewed. Data reduction from Ps level flight acceleration runs are in Chapter 5.CLIMB PERFORMANCE Rate of Climb .2 COMPUTER DATA REDUCTION Various computer programs are in existence to assist in reduction of performance data.5. The treatment is purposefully generic as programs change over time or new ones are acquired or developed. standard gross weight.2. In any event.

04 . The curve appears similar to figure 7.44) 7.05 .24.25) 1 1 The program must know P as a function of Eh.44.46 .02 .ft E h Figure 7. therefore the program plots the s function and asks for a curve fit.24 ENERGY RELATIONSHIP TO CLIMB Distance flown in the climb is found by integration of the no wind ground speed with respect to time as in Eq 7.03 . .01 5000 10000 15000 2000 25000 30000 35000 Energy Height . t t 2 Distance = ∫ V cos γ dt T 1 (Eq 7.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE E h Time to Climb = ∫ E h 2 1 dE Ps h (Eq 7.s/ft 1 Ps .06 Inverse of Specific Excess Power .

the program must integrate standard day fuel flow with respect to time as in Eq 7.25 INTEGRATION RESULTS FOR DISTANCE To calculate fuel used.CLIMB PERFORMANCE To perform the integration.s t 200 250 300 Figure 7.25 540 600 True Airspeed * cos γ . The plot should appear similar to figure 7. the program must know VT cosγ.45. Fuel Used = ∫ W dt f 1 (Eq 7. t t 2 .47 .45) ft ft ft deg Where: Eh E h1 E h2 γ Energy height Energy height at start of climb Energy height at end of climb Flight path angle 7.ft/s 560 520 400 440 0 50 100 150 Time .

7200 6800 Referred Fuel Flow . 7. The program first models the engine using referred fuel flow versus OAT. as in figure 7.lb/h .FIXED WING PERFORMANCE Ps t VT ˙ Wf Specific excess power Time True airspeed Fuel flow ft/s s ft/s lb/h. the program calculates standard day fuel flow and plots it versus time.26.˚C OAT Figure 7.48 . Wf 6400 δ θ 6000 5600 5200 -30 -25 -20 -15 -10 -5 0 Outside Air Temperature . as in figure 7.27.26.26 REFERRED FUEL USED From figure 7.

and plots altitude versus fuel used.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 4400 Std Day Fuel Flow .28. time and distance in the climb.lb/h .27 STANDARD DAY FUEL USED The program then performs the three integrations using the curve fits determined. W 4000 f 3600 3200 2000 0 50 100 150 Time .49 .s t 200 250 300 Figure 7. One possible example is shown in figure 7. 7.

From a menu selection.2. Date of tests. d.50 .FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 30000 25000 20000 15000 10000 5000 0 Pressure Altitude . Bureau number.5. 7. e.lb f Figure 7.28 FUEL USED IN CLIMB 7.ft H P 0 80 160 W 240 320 400 Fuel Weight . f. Data entry requirements for the program are as follows: 1. the appropriate choices are made to enter the sawtooth climb program. g. altitude and temperature. b. Standard gross weight. Basic data: a. Miscellaneous as allowed by the program.2 SAWTOOTH CLIMB The purpose of the sawtooth climb data reduction program is to calculate rate and climb angle for any given gross weight. c. based on flight test data. Type of aircraft. Target altitude. Pilot’s name.

Optional data as allowed by the program. The program plots rate of climb and climb angle for the given altitude versus Vc.30. c. d. Fuel flow (lb/h). f. h. Final indicated pressure altitude (ft). Time required (s ). Gross weight (lb).29 and 7. Indicated airspeed (kn).51 .ft/min ROC 2000 1600 1200 800 150 160 170 180 190 200 210 220 Calibrated Airspeed . Initial indicated pressure altitude (ft). b. g. OAT (˚C) or ambient temp (˚K). e. For each data point: a.29 RATE OF CLIMB FROM SAWTOOTH CLIMBS 7.kn Vc Figure 7.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 2. 2800 2400 Rate of Climb . as in figures 7.

M ) (Eq 7.48) (Eq 7.273. Obtain calibrated altitude (HPc) and calibrated airspeed (Vc) as in Chapter 2.15 OAT = f Ta.46) ( ) (Eq 7.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 9 8 Climb Angle .47) 7.deg γ 7 6 5 4 3 2 150 160 170 180 190 200 210 220 Calibrated Airspeed . M If OAT (˚C) was entered: Ta = f ( OAT.52 .30 CLIMB ANGLE FROM SAWTOOTH CLIMBS The following equations are used for the computer data reduction. If ambient temperature (˚K) was entered: ˚C = ˚K .kn Vc Figure 7.

50) Energy height: V E =h+ h 2 T 2g (Eq 7.1) Test day Ps: V dV T Ps = dE h = dh + gT dt dt dt Standard day Ps: W Ps Std (Eq 7.32) Where: D ∆D ∆TNx Eh h H Pc HPc ref M Drag Standard drag minus test drag Standard net thrust parallel flight path minus test net thrust Energy height Tapeline altitude Calibrated pressure altitude Reference calibrated pressure altitude Mach number 7.CLIMB PERFORMANCE True airspeed: V = f OAT.2) V Std = Ps Test T V + Std T Std Test W V T W (∆T Test Std Nx .53 lb lb lb ft ft ft ft . M T ( T ) (Eq 7.∆D) (Eq 7.49) Altitude: h=H P +∆ H c ref Pc ( ) Ta T std (Eq 7.

The analysis of Ps data is directed towards determining the airplane optimum climb schedules. though they should certainly be determined for high elevation airports and should cover possible emergency diversion with the landing gear stuck down.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE MT OAT PsStd PsTest Ta TNx TStd VT VTStd VTTest WStd WTest 7.6 True Mach number Outside air temperature Standard specific excess energy Test specific excess energy Ambient temperature Net thrust parallel flight path Standard temperature True airspeed Standard true airspeed Test true airspeed Standard weight Test weight DATA ANALYSIS ˚C ft/s ft/s ˚K lb ˚K ft/s ft/s ft/s lb lb. and are modified if necessary to make them flyable with the least penalty in climb performance. by joining the points of maximum Ps (for a “minimum time” schedule) or points of maximum Eh (for a “maximum energy” schedule). are compared with predictions. The theoretical optimum climb schedules are determined as described in section 7.3. The data from the sawtooth climb tests are intended to provide information for use in a far more restricted portion of the flight envelope than from level accelerations. the climb schedules are flight-tested and the results. A peaked curve implies small inaccuracies in airspeed result in large performance penalties. The best climb speeds for the landing or single-engine wave-off configurations are unlikely to have much application above a few thousand feet. Finally. 7.54 . The airspeed and Mach number schedules represented by these paths are then evaluated to determine whether they can be flown without undue difficulty. The shape of these curves indicate the sensitivity of achieving the desired performance to airspeed errors. corrected to standard conditions.

An interceptor is primarily interested in climbing to altitude with the minimum fuel if headed to a CAP station. 7. Flight path stability. or desire. Climb attitudes. As in all performance testing.7 MISSION SUITABILITY The mission requirements are the ultimate standard for climb performance. Consideration of the following items is worthwhile when recommending climb schedules or climb airspeeds: 1. As stated in the beginning of the chapter. optimization of other factors during the climb.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 7. 6. These specifications are important as measures for contract performance. 4. An attack aircraft launching on a strike mission is primarily interested in climbing on a schedule of maximum range covered per pound of fuel burned. 5.55 . In the case of single engine climb for multi engine aircraft or for wave-off. the pure numbers cannot be the only determinant to acceptance of the aircraft. Mission profile or requirements. restrictions. the mission of the airplane and specifically the mission of the flight to be flown determines the optimum condition for the climb. An interceptor launching to intercept an incoming raid is primarily interested in arriving at the attack altitude with the best fighting speed and in the minimum time. 2. They are important in determining whether or not to continue the acquisition process at various stages of aircraft development. The specifications set desired performance in the production aircraft. Field of view. 3. Still other types of mission may require. Mission suitability conclusions include the flying qualities associated with attaining specific airspeed schedules to climb. the test results in sawtooth climbs can develop the appropriate climb speeds to maximize obstacle clearance. Compatibility of airspeeds / altitudes with the mission and location Performance sensitivities for schedule or airspeed deviations. 7. Overall performance including climbing flight.

Low level navigation. engine(s) type. or normal thrust (power).72 constant to level off).56 . A defined ceiling such as combat ceiling.72.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 7. e. drag index. AS-5263 further defines requirements for. plotting rate of climb at basic mission combat weight with maximum. Deviation from this specification are permissible. transit.8 SPECIFICATION COMPLIANCE Climb performance guarantees are stated in the detailed specification for the model and in Naval Air System Command Specification. but in all cases must be approved by the procuring activity. Generally climb performance is presented as a function of altitude. Instrument departure. Air to air combat (offensive and/or defensive) including weapons f. Mission requirements. g. intermediate. Carrier suitability. Instantaneous single engine climb in a given configuration. Wave-off rate of climb in a specific configuration. Ferry capable. b. loading. The detail specification provides mission profiles to be expected and performance guarantees generically as follows: 1. Guarantees for climb likely include: 1. 3. Type of air combat maneuvering. 2. 2 KIAS/1000 ft decrease to Mach number 0. fuel quantity and type at engine start. c. empty gross weight. and recovery. for example: Climb on course to optimum cruise altitude with military power (320 KIAS at sea level. deployment. a. presenting characteristics and performance data for Naval piloted aircraft. The effect of weight reduction during the 7. and methods of. The type of climb is specified. Mach number 0. and configuration. Rates of climb for alternate loadings are presented to show the effects of drag changes with various external stores and/or weight changes. 2. Land or sea based. standard gross weight. Performance guarantees are based on: type of day. AS-5263. d.

weight. altitude. weight. 7. transport) use maximum continuous power. 9. altitude. Combat climb is the instantaneous maximum vertical speed capability in ft/min at combat conditions. weight. Mach number for jets. Optimum cruise altitude is the altitude at which the aircraft attains the maximum nautical miles per pound of fuel for the momentary weight and configuration. VT for propeller aircraft. Service ceiling is that altitude at which the rate of climb is 100 ft/min at a stated loading. 10. Cruise ceiling for subsonic cruise vehicles is that altitude at which the rate of climb is 300 ft/min at normal (maximum continuous) engine ratting at stated weight and loading. attack. 11. trainers) to cruise altitude is at intermediate (military) thrust. Climb speed is the airspeed at which the optimum rate of climb is attained for the given configuration. and engine thrust (power). 13.57 . and thrust (power). 12. Performance is based on the latest approved standard atmospheric tables as specified by the Navy. Cruise altitude is the altitude at which the cruise portion of the mission is computed. 4. The time to climb to a specified altitude is expressed in minutes from start of enroute climb. Enroute climb power for jet aircraft (fighter. weight. Enroute climb data is based on the appropriate configuration. 6. 2. Combat ceiling for supersonic vehicles is the highest altitude at which the vehicle can fly supersonically and have a 500 ft/min rate of climb at the stated loading. All speeds are presented as true airspeed in kn and Mach number.CLIMB PERFORMANCE climb is not considered. General provisions for the presentation of climb performance are as follows: 1. The aircraft has the landing gear and flaps retracted and the airspeed for best climb for the applicable condition is presented. Weight reduction as a result of fuel consumed is applied. and engine thrust (power). Combat ceiling for subsonic vehicles is that altitude at which the rate of climb is 500 ft/min at the stated loading. 3. 5. Propeller aircraft (patrol. 8. 7. weight. configuration. thrust (power) and weight. Cruise ceiling for supersonic cruise vehicles is that altitude at which the rate of climb is 300 ft/min at normal (maximum continuous) engine ratting at stated weight and loading. and engine thrust (power). Combat altitude is the altitude at the target for the specific mission given. and power.

1 NOTATIONS AR ax az CAP CCF CD CL D d ∆D dh/dt DStd DTest ∆TNx e Eh Eh1 Eh2 EhTest ESHP g h h1 h2 Aspect ratio Acceleration parallel flight path Acceleration perpendicular to flight path Combat air patrol Climb correction factor Drag coefficient Lift coefficient Drag Distance Standard drag minus test drag Rate of climb Standard drag Test drag Standard net thrust parallel flight path minus test net thrust Oswald’s efficiency factor Energy height Energy height at start of climb Energy height at end of climb Test energy height Engine shaft horsepower Gravitational acceleration Tapeline altitude Tapeline altitude start of climb Tapeline altitude end of climb ft/s2 ft/s2 lb ft lb ft/s lb lb lb ft ft ft ft hp ft/s2 ft ft ft 7. In addition.9 GLOSSARY 7. 7. 15. is increased by 5 % for all engine thrust (power) conditions as a service tolerance to allow for practical operation. unless authorized otherwise. ducts. regardless of source.58 . corrections or allowances to engine fuel flow is made for all power plant installation losses such as accessory drives.9. or fans.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE 14. All fuel consumption data. The term thrust (power) is used to mean thrust (jet engine) and/or brake horsepower (shaft engines).

CLIMB PERFORMANCE HP H Pc HPc ref H Po hTest L M MT nz nzStd nzTest OAT PA Pa Preq Ps PsStd PsTest ROC S t Ta TN TNx TStd V Ve VH Vhor Vi Vmc Vo Vs VT VTref VTStd Pressure altitude Calibrated pressure altitude Reference calibrated pressure altitude Observed pressure altitude Test tapeline altitude Lift Mach number True Mach number Normal acceleration Standard normal acceleration Test normal acceleration Outside air temperature Power available Ambient pressure Power required Specific excess power Standard specific excess power Test specific excess power Rate of climb Wing area Time Ambient temperature Net thrust Net thrust parallel flight path Standard temperature Velocity Equivalent airspeed Maximum level flight airspeed Horizontal velocity Indicated airspeed Airspeed for minimum control Observed airspeed Stall speed True airspeed Reference true airspeed Standard true airspeed 7.59 ft ft ft ft ft lb g g g ˚C ft-lb/s psf ft-lb/s ft/s ft/s ft/s ft/s ft2 s ˚C lb lb ˚C ft/s ft/s kn ft/s kn kn kn kn ft/s ft/s ft/s .

U. Guidelines For Preparation Of Standard Aircraft Characteristics Charts And Performance Data Piloted Aircraft (Fixed Wing). MD.FIXED WING PERFORMANCE VTTest Vv Vx Vy W Wf WStd WTest ˙ Wf Test true airspeed Vertical velocity Speed for maximum climb angle Speed for maximum rate of climb Weight Fuel weight Standard weight Test weight Fuel flow 7. 23 October. 1986. 104. Patuxent River.60 . USNTPS-FTM-No. 2.0023769 slug/ft3 7. S.10 REFERENCES 1. AS-5263. Naval Test Pilot School Flight Test Manual.2 GREEK SYMBOLS ft/s ft/s kn kn lb lb lb lb lb/h α (alpha) αj δ (delta) γ (gamma) γStd γTest π (pi) θ (theta) ρssl (rho) Angle of attack Thrust angle Pressure ratio Flight path angle Ratio of specific heats Standard flight path angle Test flight path angle Constant Temperature ratio Standard sea level air density deg deg deg deg deg 0. Naval Test Pilot School.9. Naval Air System Command Specification. July 1977. Theory and Flight Test Techniques. 7. Fixed Wing Performance.

. Petersen.S. August 1991. Edwards AFB. E. USAF Test Pilot School. USAF Test Pilot School. Airplane Performance. Naval Air Test Center.. 1958. July 1987. MD. Performance Flight Test Phase.61 . USAF Test Pilot School. Chapter 9. USNTPS Classroom Notes. 5.. Rutowski.CLIMB PERFORMANCE 3. Journal of the Aeronautical Sciences. 7. 4. J. 6. “Energy Approach to the General Aircraft Maneuverability Problem”.S. USNTPS Patuxent River. MD. Vol 21. CA. Performance Planning Guide. F. Powell. Volume I.W. CA. Edwards AFB. Patuxent River. Aircraft and Engine Performance. No 3. USAF Test Pilot School. March 1954. 7.

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