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5 – Landing gear system

Chapter 5

Landing gear system

These lecture notes, written for the students at Politecnico di Milano, Italy, can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes, a notification to Paolo.Astori@Polimi.it is welcome, to have a feedback of the interest. Any commercial use is prohibited.

5.1

The most common configuration has double main landing gear and single nose gear. ground stability and control. 5. There is then a high influence of the landing gear on the local structure. As a matter of fact.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES.1 Introduction The landing gear system includes: • strut. to have a feedback of the interest.5 for small general aviation vehicles and higher for combat aircraft. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. Any commercial use is prohibited. which may have just a central fuselage wheel and tailskid. a notification to Paolo. This can apply for a wide range of aircraft weights. The landing gear is the interface of airplane to ground. • tyre. • extraction/retraction mechanism. 4. 5. 5. • shock absorber. taxi control. A second observation concerns the number of struts. • brakes.2).POLITECNICO DI MILANO . 3. • low drag during take-off acceleration. Taxi control includes steering and taxi stability.1 – Nose and tail wheel configurations freight loading). 2. With exception of gliders. 5. braking also determines both vertical and horizontal loads that influence structural sizing.2 .it is welcome.Astori@Polimi. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. • stability in braking. The system must then have considerable mechanical resistance. this can range from 3 to 7% of the aircraft total mass. These lecture notes. so that all the ground loads are transmitted by it to the aircraft structure. the taildragger configuration is almost obsolete. energy absorption at landing. • horizontal floor (occupants’ comfort and easy Fig. but normally for airliners beyond 300 tons of maximum take off mass an additional main landing gear strut is located under the fuselage. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system 5. the landing gear arrangement is tricycle.2 General layout and design The layout of the landing gear system determines the load transfer to the structure. • wheel. which must be taken into account since the initial design stage. consisting of a main landing gear group located near the aircraft centre of gravity and a nose or tail landing gear (fig. Depending on aircraft category. Italy.1).5 for transport aircraft. • high pilot visibility during taxiing. Shock absorber and extraction/retraction mechanism may not be present in small airplanes. or two additional struts are located under wing root area (fig. Landing is the main sizing conditions for the system and its surrounding structure. • steady touch down with no risk of aerodynamic bounce. which means in general that its mass is significant. 5. The main functions of the landing gear are as follows: 1. The landing loads can reach factors of 2. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. braking. because the nose landing gear has a series of unquestioned advantages: • lateral stability in taxiing.

As far as the strut design is concerned. MAX REAR CG POSIT ION AIRCRAFT CG TAIL CONE CLEARANCE CG RESULTANT WHEEL TRACK WHEEL BASE Fig. 5. This means in all aircraft with exception of agricultural and small general aviation airplanes.3 Extraction. preventing aerodynamic bounce.it is welcome.5 – Telescopic and articulated leg 5. Many solutions are based on the four bar linkage (cases A to C). The telescopic version is always lighter but requires higher ground clearance. retraction and steering A retractable landing gear is installed whenever a drag improvement is worthy.Astori@Polimi. 5.3 .DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. The struts must be aft enough with respect to the most rear position of the centre of gravity. Some are schematically shown in fig.2 – Most common landing gear configurations The longitudinal position of the main landing gear group depends on the centre of gravity position and the tail cone shape. a condition that may easily occur during take-off (in fact a reinforcement or skid is normally integrated in that part of the structure). 5. a notification to Paolo. two solutions are mainly adopted: the telescopic and articulated leg.5 – Taxing stability The lateral track of the main landing gear gives stability during taxing. due to weight and inertial forces. acting on the centre of gravity must fall inside the area delimited by the landing gear ground contact points. to prevent rollover. 5. There are different solutions for the mechanism to obtain suitable landing gear movement. Fig. On the other hand the main wheels should not be too far from the aircraft centre line.3). then for small aircraft and helicopters the articulated version is more frequently adopted (from the figure it is clear that the piston stroke in the cylinder is lower than the wheel stroke). Moreover the tail cone must not contact the ground. 5. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system Fig. where one bar is represented by the aircraft frame. shown in fig.5. In other solutions (case These lecture notes. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . Landing gear extraction is a primary operation and always its actuation has high redundancy. 5. Any commercial use is prohibited. 5. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. to minimise roll and yaw instabilities during non levelled touch down and reduce wing root moment (if the landing gear is wing mounted). The resultant force vector.6. where the installation of a movable landing gear would increase the costs beyond the requirements of the aircraft category. in such a way that during touch down a nose down moment is generated by the ground forces to the airplane (fig. Italy.3 – Main landing gear with respect to aircraft CG position and tail cone shape Fig 4. to have a feedback of the interest.

A kinematic lock at extraction can be obtained by making the four bar linkage to reach its dead centre at full extraction. 5. steering is obtained by directioning the nose These lecture notes. In both extracted and retracted configurations.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. An uplock is also activated when the landing gear is fully retracted. In any case a downlock based on a hydraulic or electric device is activated to Fig 5.7 – Piston load-stroke diagram Fig.Astori@Polimi.6 – Some common kinematic solutions prevent any movement of the strut when the aircraft is taxiing. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only.7. The area under the load line represents the necessary work. In general the mechanism should be designed in such a B way that gravity and aerodynamic drag favour extraction.8 – Hydraulic steering circuit Steering may be obtained by differential braking on main landing gear wheels in a taildragger tricycle. while extraction can initiate by gravity and be completed by drag. stroke will be of the C type shown in fig. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes.POLITECNICO DI MILANO .it is welcome. Italy. a diagram reporting piston load vs.4 . control the extraction/retraction operation. that for A the main landing gear of large airplanes is made of double tandem wheels. Fig. a notification to Paolo. normally of the hydraulic type. Any commercial use is prohibited. If this is divided by the area of the rectangle defined by the max load and stroke. to have a feedback of the interest. to prevent non-intentional extraction during flight. if the conditions on gravity and drag are satisfied. 5. the mechanism must be blocked (downlock and E uplock respectively). one obtains the D efficiency of the kinematic mechanism. Actuators. Uplocks and downlocks are normally provided for the landing gear doors too. which also could be a dangerous event at high velocity. On conventional tricycle configuration. 5. More complex kinematics include three-dimensional motion and the deflection of the bogie. 5. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system D) one bar end can slide along a slot. which commonly is in the range 70 – 80 %. the extraction is possible with no power from the hydraulic system. with a constant sign: this means that retraction is obtained by applying a force to contrast drag and movable equipment weight.

with some hydraulic and mechanical solutions to obtain efficient energy absorption and comfortable taxiing. typically rack-pinion coupling. when loaded. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system landing gear. 5. the second and further stages start compression when a high load is developed. in this case also controllable orifices can be used. the first stage works in normal operation. Its secondary requirement is to allow a comfortable taxiing. Fig. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. relief valves may be installed on the absorber. which are compressed by the landing gear.4 Shock absorber layouts The main role of the shock absorber is to zero the vertical component of the airplane velocity during landing. and fig. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. Substantially the system structure is made of a movable piston that. control of fluid viscosity. the total orifice area can be changed by inserting check valves in some orifices or valves that throttle the orifices in one flow direction.5 . These lecture notes. 5. but when costs and dimensions allow. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. control of orifices area. a notification to Paolo. The complexity of the system A) DEFORMABLE LEG B) HYDRAULIC SYSTEMS increases with the requirements. to attenuate the load transfer to the airplane structure. a control of the damping characteristics of the shock absorber can be obtained in two ways: 1. with no rebound and limited load transfer to the vehicle structure (and occupants). 5.8A. are based on active control of damping. Since the damping force is function of the orifice geometry and oil properties. then flattening the reaction curve. compresses a gas (nitrogen) in a cylinder and causes an oil flow through orifices. so that the elastic effects is due to the rubber compression and damping effect to hysteresis and local friction.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. 2. when the leg extension is that of the aircraft in normal ground operation.8 – Some shock absorber solutions A list of main requirements for an efficient and functional shock absorber follows: • damping characteristics should be different in compression and extension.Astori@Polimi. The hydraulic solution is anyway mostly adopted. as schematically shown in fig. The system elasticity is due to the gas transformation and the damping effect to the liquid pressure losses. still under development. Different types of shock absorbers are available. to have a feedback of the interest. Different solutions are used for the kinematics and linkage. 5. in some application (small aircraft and helicopters). the orifices have maximum area.8 is an example of hydraulic circuit with linear actuators linked to the steering strut. • for high landing vertical velocities.it is welcome. 5. multi-stage shock absorbers can be used.8B shows only some of many possible versions. 5. the second stage is a composite cylinder in series with the main stage (crash stage). A low cost alternative to this method is to use an absorber made of a stack of rubber blocks. Very small aircraft with fixed landing gear may rely on the elastic properties of the landing gear legs and the damping effect of tyre sideslip on the ground. for instance the internal structure of the absorber can be shaped in such a way that. The systems till now described are passive devices. rotary or linear actuators. Fig. • to increase the energy absorption in crash conditions.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . Any commercial use is prohibited. a hydraulic system is commonly used. the shock absorber responds with high reaction forces due to oil viscosity. Italy. • during taxiing the absorber should be softer. More advanced solutions.

Italy. An interesting indication is given by the ratio between this work and the work that could be These lecture notes.6 . The second solution is possible with the use of electro-rheological or magneto-rheological fluids. δ = piston stroke (δ = 0 for full extended shock absorber). to have a feedback of the interest. as follows: V0 3 &2 R = p ⋅ A = p A + K Q ⋅ A = p0 V − A ⋅ x A + KA δ 0 ( 2 ) γ (eq. which normally is in the range 60 – 70 % of the maximum stroke ∆.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. p0 = initial accumulator pressure. the oil from the cylinder passes through an orifice and compresses the gas in the accumulator. and a viscous term. The resulting reaction is then the sum of a polytropic transformation. K = orifice pressure loss coefficient. and their peculiarity is to achieve quasi-plastic behaviour when the field intensity is increased. According to this approach the reaction R of the shock absorber is function of the piston position and its time derivative. proportional to the stroke derivative δ . VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system The first solution is possible with the use of micro actuators that throttle the orifices. Q = oil flow rate. 5. 5. Any commercial use is prohibited.4 can be used.10 shows an indicative plot of the reaction. The final part is related to the piston return to static equilibrium under the aircraft weight. a value of 1. and shock absorber conditions. γ = polytropic exponent.it is welcome. Generating the field in the orifices sections allows changing significantly the damping behaviour of the shock absorber by controlling the characteristics of a small volume of fluid. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. pA RMAX R K p δ ∆ R Fig. As polytropic index γ.9.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . a notification to Paolo.10 – Shock absorber reaction δ The area under the reaction curve represents the work absorbed by the system.Astori@Polimi. 5.1) where: p = pressure on piston. V0 = initial accumulator gas volume.9 – Shock absorber schematic representation Fig. the shock absorber can be described as a hydraulic cylinder linked to an accumulator. 5. 5. pA = accumulator pressure. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. because the process is fast enough to be considered quasi-adiabatic. as shown schematically in fig. Fig.5 Shock absorber functioning principles In its most basic configuration. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. these oils have properties sensitive to electric or magnetic fields respectively. Both the systems are controlled on the basis of input signals from sensors of vehicle acceleration and velocity. When the piston moves. 5. elastic and proportional & to the stroke δ.3 – 1. A = piston area. 5.

g = gravity. 5. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano.2) RMAX ⋅ ∆ The ideal absorber (η = 1) is a perfectly stiff-plastic system.2 and considering the definition of the landing load factor n: n= then obtaining: [R + L]MAX Mg ≤ RMAX + Mg . to have a feedback of the interest.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system ideally absorbed with a constant maximum force RMAX and the maximum stroke ∆. even if many aircraft and landing gear characteristics are unknown. 5. ∆ = max shock absorber stroke. L=L(δ) = function of lift vs.3) where: M = aircraft mass. (eq. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. but a number of simplifying considerations can be done. vZ = aircraft vertical velocity. A modern hydraulic shock absorber has and efficiency around 0. Any commercial use is prohibited.12. 5. stroke. due to the change of trajectory of the airplane during shock absorber compression and consequent decrease of the angle of attack.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. stroke.8 – 0. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. 5. R=R(δ) = function of shock absorber reaction vs. a notification to Paolo.7 . 5. Eq.3 and solving with respect to ∆ brings to: These lecture notes. called efficiency: ∫ η= ∆ 0 R ⋅ dδ (eq. First of all the work absorbed by the landing gear can be written remembering eq. 5. A simple energy balance. 5.3 in the form written above is not of immediate use. δ = shock absorber stroke.6 Preliminary stroke estimation The max stroke of a landing gear shock absorber can be preliminarily estimated.6) Substituting into eq.Astori@Polimi. 5. 3 (eq.9. Italy. 5. 5. as evidenced in fig. Mg (eq. related to the vertical forces during shock absorber compression.4) ∫ ∆ 0 R ⋅ dδ = η ⋅ Mg ⋅ (n − 1) ⋅ ∆ . 0 0 2 (eq.5) Lift function L(δ) can be approximately considered to decrease linearly from its max value Mg to (1/3)Mg. 5. The contribution of the tyre is not included in this discussion. This allows approximating the integral as follows: ∫ ∆ 0 L ⋅ dδ = 2 ⋅ Mg ⋅ ∆ .it is welcome. as follows: ∆ ∆ 1 2 Mv Z + Mg∆ = ∫ R ⋅ dδ + ∫ L ⋅ dδ . can be applied to the landing aircraft considering kinetic and potential energy and the works developed by the shock absorber and lift force.

12 – Aircraft trajectory during landing It is easy to find out that lift can be expressed as a function of the time derivative of x.8a) (eq. 5. wheels. (eq.11 – 2 dof landing gear model FG NM Fig. to have a feedback of the interest. 5. 5. a system of two differential equations can be written.7) 5. 1 2 ∂C L ρv S α. Any commercial use is prohibited. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. Then.11. is given by: L= where: ρ = air density.8 . CL = aircraft lift coefficient. 5. in its classic formula. R ′(x − y ) = shock absorber elastic function. & L( x ) = lift function. g = gravity. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. Italy. a notification to Paolo.7 Two-degree-of-freedom model The procedure above explained is still used at preliminary stage for the evaluation of the max shock absorber stroke. following the indications in fig. A more detailed evaluation can be performed by a rough two rigid body model. 5.9) These lecture notes. but contains a series of approximations that cannot be accepted in further development stages of the aircraft design. in fact lift.it is welcome.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. 5. 2 ∂α (eq. S = aircraft reference surface. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. where one rigid body is the aircraft and the other is the landing gear (legs. 5. 2 vZ (eq. 5. ′′ & N M ( y ) = ground-tyre normal viscous reaction function. y M M where: M = aircraft mass less landing gear mass. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system ∆= [η ⋅ (n − 1) − 13]⋅ 2g .Astori@Polimi. ′ N M ( y ) = ground-tyre normal elastic reaction function. as follows: & & & M&& = R ′(x − y ) + R′′( x − y ) + L(x ) − Mg x & & & m&& = − R′( x − y ) − R ′′(x − y ) + N ′ ( y ) + N ′′ ( y ) − mg .8b) & & R ′′(x − y ) = shock absorber viscous function. pistons. v = aircraft velocity.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . m = landing gear mass. M x R FSA m y Fig. brakes and all parts connected to the moving equipment).

All the components of lift are constant during landing gear compression. stroke.11b) As first approximation a polytropic function may be used for the internal pressure p w starting from tyre initial Fig. with a correction factor u that takes into account that the tyre has also some side deformation during ground compression: VW 0 pW = pW 0 V − u∆V W W0 . is clearly given by the sum of the aircraft pitch orientation αA with respect to the horizon and the angle of its trajectory αT with respect to the horizon.Astori@Polimi. Italy. 5. as shown in fig.8b is given by the elastic component. v). a notification to Paolo. 5.it is welcome. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano.11c) where ∆VW is the compenetration volume between the two solids. with exception of α (and. 5. γ (eq. d: These lecture notes.8 Tyre normal reaction As far as the ground-tyre normal force is concerned.11a) The area AG may be approximated with the rectangular intersection between the ground plane and the tyre cylinder of width w and nominal radius R=D/2. a parametric analysis can be done by changing the shock absorber geometrical and mechanical characteristics and evaluating their influence on the load factor. (eq. 5. then the total normal force in eq. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. the angle of attack α. the viscous component N” can normally be neglected because the hysteresis of the tyre structure is limited. and this last one is easily related to the vertical velocity: α = α A + αT = α A + & x . Any commercial use is prohibited. NM = N’M . to have a feedback of the interest. 5.12. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system α = aircraft angle of attack. 5. this force can be calculated as the product of the tyre footprint area AG times the internal pressure pW : N M = pW AG . 5. 5. 5. etc.POLITECNICO DI MILANO .DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. with axis located at distance y from ground. as shown in fig. More precise calculations can be based on the following empirical formulas from ESDU 86005: Tyre deflection. 5. v (eq.10) The above written system of differential equations must be numerically solved.13: AG = 2w R 2 − y 2 . (eq.13 – Tyre-ground contact geometry conditions of inflating pressure p w0 and volume VW0.9 . in a very minor extent.

12e) AG = 2. 5. 2h: (eq. 5. 5.02. 5. 5.08 pWr ) ⋅ w ⋅ wD w NM 2 (eq.10 .14.14 – Centre of pressure displacement The friction factor depends on tyre material and construction. Any commercial use is prohibited. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system ( pW 0 ( pW 0 d d d = 0.7 − 2 .9 Tyre rolling resistance (eq.it is welcome.12a) (eq.13) Fig. vertical deflection and ground surface texture. one can write the displacement xc as follows: D xc = µ R − d 2 (eq. to have a feedback of the interest. Italy.14) These lecture notes. b: 2 (eq.02 for > 0. ∆pW : ∆pW d2 = 1 . 5. hysteresis and local inertia of the tyre structure volumes that are deformed during rolling. 5.96 + 10.08 pWr ) ⋅ w ⋅ wD w NM d d = 2. forward speed. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. a notification to Paolo.12c) 2h d d = 1 .067 w w + 0. AG: 4 6 (eq.12b) where pWr is the rated pressure. the centre of pressure of the tyre-ground contact area is displaced ahead of the wheel axle.7 − D D D Tyre footprint width.067 w + 0. 5. With reference to fig. 5. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. Nevertheless there is a tendency to use a fixed value for the factor in ground performance evaluation.12f) The rolling resistance to forward motion is observed in a freely unyawed tyre and is due to friction in bearings. During steady rolling on a dry surface.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. that is µR = 0.3d wD 5.5 + 1 .5 pW 0 wD Tyre footprint length. 5.Astori@Polimi. 5.4 − 0. Pressure rise with deflection.8 for ≤ 0.POLITECNICO DI MILANO .12d) b d d d = 1 . the rolling resistance is given by the normal force NM times the rolling friction factor µR: TR = µ R N M (eq. By equating the moments around the axle. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano.5 w w w w Tyre footprint gross area.

5.11 . during braking. responsible for braking. This action compresses the entire disc package. when affordable. because rotor and stator parts are all free to move along the wheel axis. When pressure is reduced. • back plate. made of a mixture of metallic and ceramic materials. or anyway constrained in such a way to be only free to move along its axis. The higher the hydraulic pressure. is pushed against the first rotor disc of the assembly by a number of hydraulic pistons located along a circle. with a functioning principle similar to that of the automotive systems. carbon discs allow lower weight. are as follows (fig. also brings lining blocks on one side only and. The complete equipment is housed inside the wheel. The rotor discs are keyed to the wheel.Astori@Polimi. Since the rotor and stator discs are in relative rotation. but based on different sizing principles. These lecture notes. All the discs can be made of steel but. the discs are released by a series of springs.15 – Disc brake parts The stator disc at one extremity. or pressure plate. • stator discs. the higher the normal contact force and then the friction force. or pads. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano.10 Disc brakes Airplanes are mainly equipped with disc brakes. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. The stator disc at the opposite extremity. ROTOR DISC STATOR DISC WHEEL BRAKE ASSEMBLY STATOR AXLE WHEEL KEY BACK PLATE KEY SLOTS TO AXLE LINING BLOCKS KEY SLOTS TO WHEEL ROTOR CYLINDERS PRESSURE PLATE Fig. Italy. 5. the contact between the lining blocks and the rotor discs will generate a tangential friction.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. but its manufacturing costs and difficulties excluded it from standard use. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. The main components of a disc brake. so that the assembly results a sandwich of rotor discs and stator discs packed together. which is usually powered by the hydraulic system.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . which contrasts the pressure. For a short period in the 60’s they were made of beryllium. or back plate. on the two flat surfaces. Any commercial use is prohibited. 5. then occupying a large part of the room between the axle and the wheel. The stator discs are keyed to the axle. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system In wet conditions. Drum brakes are almost obsolete. is fully constrained to the axle and brings lining blocks on one side only. enough to obtain a uniform pressure distribution. They bring. to have a feedback of the interest. lining blocks.it is welcome. The rotor discs usually have radial slots. • rotor discs. 5. with exception of the back plate at one extremity. a notification to Paolo. the water layer under the tyre moves further ahead the centre of pressure. to minimise disc deformation during friction heating. rotating then with it and being free to move along its axis. They are alternated to the stator discs.15): • pressure plate.

Phs = absorbed power. Italy.17d) where: ε = average surface emissivity. conduction (Pcond) and convection (Pconv). v = v(t) = velocity. flaps and spoilers.17c) (eq. neglecting the contribution of possible thrust reverse. χ = overall coefficient of conductivity. 5.15) The part of brakes that is involved in heat absorption is often referred to as heat sink. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only.it is welcome. the absorbed power brings to heat sink heating as follows: Phs = mcv where: m = heat sink mass.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . 5. because it has contributions from radiation (Prad). H = overall coefficient of convection.16) The calculation of the dissipated power is not easy.11 Disc brakes heat balances Brake sizing is based on heating during a single landing or aborted take-off. where: TM = TM(t) = braking force. a notification to Paolo. to have a feedback of the interest. the shape is complex and influence of any form of forced or natural ventilation is hard.17b) (eq. dt (eq. Adisc = disc area.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. These lecture notes. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes.17a) (eq. 5. 5. T = temperature. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system The lining also can be made either of carbon (carbon-carbon disc system) or polymer. 5. cv = heat sink specific heat.Astori@Polimi. dT . Any commercial use is prohibited. (eq. Tdisc = disc temperature. part of it will be absorbed by the components and part will be dissipated: TM v = Phs + Pdiss . Pdiss = dissipated power. they are fragmented into sector blocks because both to reduce the risk of rupture when they are made of brittle material and to favour the extraction of the particles deriving from wearing. 5. Tamb = ambient temperature.12 . B = Stefan-Boltzmann radiation constant. n general we can write: Pdiss = Prad + Pcond + Pconv Prad = εB T − T dT Pcond = χS dz Pconv = HAdisc (Tdisc − Tamb ) 4 disc 4 amb ( ) (eq. S = area of conduction. 5. 5. This means that a large part of the kinetic power during braking will be converted into heat in the brake disc area. metals and ceramic materials.

to have a feedback of the interest. as follows: C = p ⋅ A ⋅ µ disc ⋅ R B . On the other hand. Large aircraft may have braking nose wheels. (eq. M = aircraft mass. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. 5. 5. Moreover a thick disc would not allow a suitable temperature distribution.Astori@Polimi.3. ∆T = temperature increment during braking. discs must be sized in such a way to withstand the high tangential stress that is generated by friction. m = total heat sink mass.18) Considering that anyway there is a drag contribution to braking. From fig.19) These lecture notes. 2 where: k = fraction of energy converted to brake heat.12 Braking force Usually brakes are located in all the main landing gear wheels: the above-mentioned mass m is then related to all the brakes located in the wheels. Any commercial use is prohibited. 5. Italy. of the aircraft geometry. A multiple disc brake is used whenever a high braking power is necessary.16 – Evaluation of the braking intensity The braking intensity is a function of the brake geometry and.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES.8. RB = radius of the lining block centroids. A = total lining friction area.it is welcome. µdisc = disc friction coefficient. but would be rather cold at the core and overheated in periphery. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system Eventually.13 . 5.16 the braking torque C can be easily evaluated as a function of the hydraulic pressure and discs geometry. because the lining friction surface increases with the number of discs. a notification to Paolo. because they allow a reduced total disc mass. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. For sizing. normally around 0. M should be the max landing mass or take-off mass. where: p = hydraulic pressure. The braking force TM will then be given by: (eq. the heat sink absorption can be expressed by a simplified formula of energy balance: 1 k ⋅ Mv 2 = m ⋅ cv ⋅ ∆T . 5. Materials with high specific heat and high operating temperature are of course preferred. k may often be approximated to 0. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. v the max landing velocity or aborted take-off velocity and ∆T the difference between the allowable disc material temperature and the highest possible initial temperature. in a minor extent. v = initial velocity.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . 5. RB RR TM NM NN TM NM Fig. cv = heat sink specific heat.

RR = tyre rolling radius. ω = wheel angular speed. In static conditions (airplane at rest) NM will be equal more or less to 90% of the aircraft weight. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. tyre pressure and tyre geometry). Italy. 5. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. 5. with a maximum value µmax developed for a slip ratio of 10 – 15%: TM _ max = µ max ⋅ N M . as far as µ is concerned.it is welcome. slip ratio.17 – Ground friction coefficient and speed. 5. this is a function of different parameters: speed. Of course the braking force cannot increase indefinitely with pressure. Any commercial use is prohibited. tyre tread pattern and surface conditions of the runway and tyre. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system TM = C .23a) (eq.17 shows its typical function of the slip ratio Fig. v − ωRR . Fig. a notification to Paolo. (eq.5 in case of wet runway and down to 0.Astori@Polimi.18. given by the normal force N and a side friction coefficient λ . Then TM is limited by: TM = µ ⋅ N M . A law similar to eq. can approximate this force: These lecture notes. 5. 5. inflating pressure. Friction between tyre and ground is a complex problem. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano.13 Sideslip (eq. 5. to have a feedback of the interest. 5. TM _ skid = µ skid ⋅ N M .21) where NM is the normal reaction of the main landing gear. 5.20) where RR is the rolling radius (that depends on the normal reaction NM. RR (eq. 5. but is limited by the tyre-ground friction coefficient. a simple algebraic system in the two unknowns N and TM can be set up and solved. v (eq.22) This parameter can range from null (free rolling wheel) to 1 (locked wheel).1 for iced runway. the slip ratio is defined by: s= where: v = vehicle speed. between these extremes.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . due to the conventional position of the aircraft centre of gravity. In braking conditions N is lower because the inertia forces overload the nose landing gear. the friction coefficient ranges from null to µskid. as shown in fig.23b) A lateral force arises when the tyre has a slip angle with respect to ground. this is defined by a factor µ that ranges from 0. then. 5.21.14 . provided any drag contribution is neglected. 5.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. Depending on the longitudinal and vertical position of the centre of gravity.9 for dry runway and tyre and asphalt in good conditions to 0. where local inertia and surface deformation play important roles.

has two effects: reduction of the available tyre-ground friction coefficient and introduction of an additional fluid dynamic force component. 5. eventually.15 Resultant force and dynamic analysis Summarising the previous sections. 5.Astori@Polimi. normally water. in this zone a continuous. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system TS = λ ⋅ N M . Italy. 5. 5. 5. then tending rather rapidly to the ground friction factor µ. the film is broken only on sharp edges of the runway or tyre pattern.19 – Sideslip coefficient function 5. 5. where the tyre impact both ejects the fluid and forces it into the tread or the runway drainage paths. • zone 2: this is a transition region. zone 1 extends. 5.25) These lecture notes. relatively thick layer of fluid is present between the tyre and the runway and the tyre is deformed inward.18 – Sideslip Fig. but Fig. 5. aligned with vehicle velocity. with the fluid captured by viscous effects in a thin film between the tyre and the runway surface. so that a very limited grip is obtained. to have a feedback of the interest. Any commercial use is prohibited.5 β 5 10 Fig. (eq.15 . 1. The contact area can be divided in three zones.POLITECNICO DI MILANO .it is welcome. rolling. the tyre is dynamically lifted by the fluid film and loses almost any grip with the runway surface (aquaplaning). sideslip and fluid: r r r r r T = TM + TR + TS + TF (eq. 5.20 – Contact on wet runway the region may be very small depending on the vehicle speed and fluid quantity.0 λ 0.20: • zone 1: this is the most forward zone of the footprint. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. a notification to Paolo. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. the resulting tangential force T exchanged between the tyre and ground surface is given by braking.19. where the tyre-ground friction coefficient is almost completely developed. as illustrated in fig. then introducing a fluid dynamic drag on the landing gear. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. when zones 2 and 3 are significantly reduced.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. as indicated in fig. • zone 3: this is a region of predominantly dry contact. When speed increases.14 Forces with wet runway The presence of fluid on the runway.24) The coefficient λ is a function of the slip angle β and is linear for angles lower than 5°.

a notification to Paolo. wheel angular velocity ω and vehicle speed v). This is an unstable condition. If one wheel is decelerating more intensively than the others. which were developed after the Second World War. because a moderate increase of the braking torque C leads to a decrease of µ and TM. Maximum braking TM_max occurs at µmax (eq. 5.19. due to the loss of tyre grip. second. leads to an increase of the angular velocity (spin up). in case of skid. Rotational equilibrium in the general case can be written as follows: D & Iω = (TM + TR + TF cos β ) − d − N M xc − C . and with no sideslip: D & Iω = T M − d − N M x c − C 2 (eq. the braking force TM. 5. These lecture notes.23a). 5.16 Anti-skid and auto-braking systems Deceleration is obtained through the friction between the braking wheels and ground: by increasing the braking system pressure. Any commercial use is prohibited. The pilot controls the system pressure through the pedals.19. the normal force NM is obtained by the calculation on the landing gear shock absorber. Then the condition of max braking can be obtained only by automatic control.27) In this equation. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system As a matter of fact here some approximations have been already introduced: first of all the modification of the rolling force TR with sideslip angle β is omitted.16 . a theoretical increase of the stopping distance. but worked on the same principle). 5.27. that is a very common condition.23a. we can say that the above written equation is valid for rolling wheel and limited sideslip. from eq. then also the tangential force TM between wheel and runway increases. On the other hand. 5. 5. 2. within a few tens of meters. The wheels are equipped with speed sensors and their signal is transmitted to a processing unit (the older systems were of course based on analogue technology. by allowing it to spin-up to the speed level sampled prior to slippage deceleration. due to reduction of the friction coefficient. In dry conditions. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. possibly including the overall dynamics of the aircraft. the wheel tends to lock and the friction coefficient decreases. If this tangential force exceeds the limit indicated in eq. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. 3. 5. the braking force TM is given by eq. the event is interpreted as incipient wheel locking. neglecting the rolling friction because it is significantly lower than the tyreground friction. 5. 5. the braking torque increases according to eq.Astori@Polimi. or outside a predetermined pattern.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . The speed decrease of all braking wheels is monitored and compared to each other and with predetermined deceleration patterns.e. Three effects result from the wheel locking: 1. The anti-skid braking systems. because it is small. in case of wheel locking the braking force TM_skid is lower than the maximum TM_max and a decrease of the torque C. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes.26) where C is the braking torque given by eq. and then the control system starts to find the new modulating pressure.21 and then can be calculated after evaluation of the tyre-ground friction coefficient as a function of the slip ratio (i. 5. the wheel tends to spin down and the increase of slip ratio brings to the increase of the friction coefficient µ.19). & 5. the braking torque C is a function of pressure (eq. Italy. A servo-valve then releases the braking pressure of that specific wheel. lies no more in the wheel plane but is redirectioned along the velocity vector. so that from eq. 2 (eq. 5.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES.it is welcome. a loss of guidance control. avoid wheel locking by modulating the braking system pressure. to have a feedback of the interest.27 ω becomes more negative (spin down) and normally the wheel locks in a very short time. tyre explosion.

ki = proportional. also during automatic braking. ω tire = tire angular velocity. The system works also in take-off mode: if the pilot makes any operation typical of a rejected take-off (extends the spoilers.21 shows a possible block diagram of an anti-skid simulation system. defined as follows: η= TM _ med TM _ max = µ eff µ max . Iabs = control signal. where: SR = slip ratio. brakes will be automatically activated a few seconds after touch down. 5. or operates the thrust reversers). written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. vlong = vehicle speed.28) This parameter has values between 50 and 60% for a well trained pilot and rises to 90% with a modern adaptive anti-skid system. capable of maintaining the wheel speed at a limited slip ratio level that maximises the ground friction. then providing a constant deceleration.21 – Anti skid block diagram The automatic braking system is often associated with anti-skid system. 5. derivative and integrative constants for the PID. 5. or moves the thrust lever back to idle. Italy. Fig. the intensity is pre-set by the crew before landing. In auto-braking the pilot does not need to use the pedals to brake.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . a notification to Paolo. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system Older systems were actually on-off control systems. kp. With the auto-braking armed in landing mode. In any case the pilot can overcome the auto-braking by pressing the pedals beyond a predetermined excursion.it is welcome. auto-braking is triggered at maximum level.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. (eq. because they operated an intense reduction and increase of pressure. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only. or at spoiler extension. If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. current systems have a smooth and refined control.Astori@Polimi. These lecture notes. The anti-skid system is always operating. kd. It increases the braking efficiency. because a pre-set braking deceleration is automatically applied. 5. Ipilot = pilot signal demand. to have a feedback of the interest.17 . Any commercial use is prohibited. Fig.

C Covo. Any commercial use is prohibited. 12. ESDU 71026.Astori@Polimi. Italy. S Hayat. ESDU 95015. ESDU 85029.Part I: Estimation of Braking Force. 1998 2. Frictional and Retarding Forces on Aircraft Tyres . If any institution makes use of these lecture notes. vol. G L Ghiringhelli. 1986 6. M Morandini. Examples of Distributions of Hard Paved Runway Surface Types. T J Yager.POLITECNICO DI MILANO . AGARD-AG-333. The Royal Aeronautical Society. Enhancement of Aircraft Ground Handling Simulation Capability. a notification to Paolo. 1995 7. 2008 8. The Royal Aeronautical Society. The Royal Aeronautical Society. 1971 amended 1995 4. Temperature Estimation of CHV Brake Discs using an Energy Balance Approach. The Royal Aeronautical Society. ESDU 71025. Frictional and Retarding Forces on Aircraft Tyres . 5. V Cocquempot. A G Barnes. M Staroswiecki. VERSION 2009 Chapter 5 – Landing gear system 5. 1971 amended 1995 3. to have a feedback of the interest. S Artus. 1985 amended 2006 5. Aerospace Science and Technology.18 .it is welcome. IEEE Intelligent Transportatlon Systems Conference 2004 These lecture notes.17 References 1. S Gualdi. Vertical Deflection Characteristics of Aircraft Tyres.DIPARTIMENTO DI INGEGNERIA AEROSPAZIALE NUMERICAL MODELS FOR AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS – LECTURE NOTES. written for the students at Politecnico di Milano. can be freely downloaded and used without permission of the copyright holder for educational purposes only.Part I: Introduction. ESDU 85029. The Royal Aeronautical Society. Calculation of Ground Performance in Take-Off and Landing. Anti-Skid Induced Aircraft Landing Gear Instability.

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