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AERO4591: Advanced Flight Mechanics (2013 - Semester 2)

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Unit: AERO4591: Advanced Flight Mechanics (6 CP)
Mode: Normal-Day
On Offer: Yes
Level: Senior Advanced
Faculty/School: School of Aerospace, Mechanical & Mechatronic Engineering
Unit Coordinator/s: Dr Gibbens, Peter
Session options: Semester 2
Versions for this Unit:
Site(s) for this Unit:
Campus: Camperdown/Darlington
Pre-Requisites: AERO3560 AND AMME3500.
Brief Handbook Description: This unit aims to develop an understanding of aircraft flight test, validation and verification, and the development of modern flight control, guidance, and navigation systems. Students will gain skills in analysis, problem solving and systems design in the areas of aircraft dynamic system identification and control.

At the end of this unit students will be able to understand: the principles of stability augmentation systems and autopilot control systems in aircraft operation, their functions and purposes; the characteristics of closed loop system responses; advanced feedback control systems and state-space design techniques; the concepts of parameter and state estimation; the design of observers in the state space and the implementation of a Kalman Filter; multi-loop control and guidance systems and the reasons for their structures; flight test principles and procedures and the implementation a flight test programme.
Assumed Knowledge: This Unit of Study assumes that AERO3560 Flight Mechanics 1 and AERO4560 Flight Mechanics 2 (or equivalents) have been successfully completed.
Additional Notes: Note that not all of the listed topics will be covered. Topics will be selected and delivered subject to the interests of the class and rate of progress with the major project.
Lecturer/s: Dr Gibbens, Peter
Timetable: AERO4591 Timetable
Time Commitment:
# Activity Name Hours per Week Sessions per Week Weeks per Semester
1 Lecture 3.00 1 13
2 Tutorial 2.00 1 13
3 Independent Study 6.00 1 13
T&L Activities: Tutorial: Tutorials will be held in the PC labs which have the necessary PC and software facilities.

Independent Study: Problem based learning approach via solution of assessable design problems. Also requires research of advanced concepts. On the basis of 1 hr per week per CP

Attributes listed here represent the key course goals (see Course Map tab) designated for this unit. The list below describes how these attributes are developed through practice in the unit. See Learning Outcomes and Assessment tabs for details of how these attributes are assessed.

Attribute Development Method Attribute Developed
Design flight test procedures and manoeuvres and develop a flight simulator. Design (Level 4)
Develop an understanding of modern flight control, guidance and navigation systems. Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 5)
Skills in programming in Matlab and Simulink Information Seeking (Level 3)

For explanation of attributes and levels see Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table.

Learning outcomes are the key abilities and knowledge that will be assessed in this unit. They are listed according to the course goal supported by each. See Assessment Tab for details how each outcome is assessed.

Design (Level 4)
1. To be able to design observers in the state space and to implement a Kalman Filter.
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 5)
2. To understand the principles of stability augmentation systems and autopilot control systems in aircraft operation, their functions and purposes.
3. To understand the characteristics of closed loop system responses.
4. To understand advanced feedback control systems and state-space design techniques.
5. To understand the concepts of parameter and state estimation.
6. To be comfortable with multi-loop control and guidance systems and the reasons for their structures.
Information Seeking (Level 3)
7. To appreciate flight test principles and procedures and to be capable of implementing a flight test programme.
Assessment Methods:
# Name Group Weight Due Week Outcomes
1 Project No 100.00 Week 13 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7,
Assessment Description: Project: Assessment for this topic is based completely on a major project involving a (simulation based) flight test programme to identify the aerodynamic characteristics of an aircraft of the students choice, and the implementation of a complete modern flight identification, control and integrity monitoring system involving state-space control design techniques, Kalman Filter based state estimation techniques, and fault detection and isolation techniques.
Grade Type Description
Standards Based Assessment Final grades in this unit are awarded at levels of HD for High Distinction, DI (previously D) for Distinction, CR for Credit, PS (previously P) for Pass and FA (previously F) for Fail as defined by University of Sydney Assessment Policy. Details of the Assessment Policy are available on the Policies website at . Standards for grades in individual assessment tasks and the summative method for obtaining a final mark in the unit will be set out in a marking guide supplied by the unit coordinator.
Policies & Procedures: See the policies page of the faculty website at for information regarding university policies and local provisions and procedures within the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies.
Recommended Reference/s: Note: References are provided for guidance purposes only. Students are advised to consult these books in the university library. Purchase is not required.
Online Course Content:
Note on Resources: There is no specific text book required for this course. Reference material sufficient to pass this course is provided in the Lecture Notes for this course that can be found under the Flight Mechanics teaching page on the department`s web site . The presentation of the course in lectures will roughly follow the sequence of these notes. Notwithstanding this, the books by Stevens and Lewis, Blakelock, Franklin, Powell and Emami-Naeni and by D`Azzo and Houpis are considered major

reference books for this course. The former is a recommended purchase for students who are serious about doing well in this course.

Note that the "Weeks" referred to in this Schedule are those of the official university semester calendar

Week Description
Week 1 Review aircraft dynamic system modeling.
Review of Flight Dynamics:
Controllability and observability.
System identification:
Model order and structure
Week 2 System identification cont'd:
Estimation of aerodynamic and control characteristics in linear and nonlinear systems.
Parameter identification techniques.
Week 3 Manoeuvre characteristics in relation to parameters.
Manoeuvre design for optimal estimation.
Relationship of parameters to modal characteristics.
Manoeuvre design and specification:
Week 4 Flight test techniques and test schedule planning.
Flight test programs:
Manoeuvre specifications.
Week 5 State estimation:
Observability and observer design.
Optimal estimation and the Kalman Filter.
Separation principle.
Week 6 System integrity monitoring:
State estimation cont'd:
Extended Kalman filter and its various forms.
Aircraft state estimation and flight path reconstruction.
Sensors and their relationship to estimator structure.
Redundant and analytical fault identification.
Week 7 System integrity monitoring cont'd:
System fault recovery and reconfiguration.
Fault detection techniques – KF innovations and parity space methods.
Week 8 State-space control:
LQR/LQG and pole-placement techniques.
State space control techniques.
Role in system structure and relationship to other components.
Week 9 Integration with state estimation component.
Integration and frequency and time domain control techniques.
Integral control in the state space.
State-space control cont'd:
Week 10 Predictive control techniques.
Guidance systems, flight path specification and optimisation.
State-space control cont'd:
Week 11 Discrete system equivalents and the z-transform.
Digital implementation of control and estimator systems.
Digital implementation:
Week 12 Project work
Week 13 Project work
Assessment Due: Project

Course Relations

The following is a list of courses which have added this Unit to their structure.

Course Year(s) Offered
Aeronautical (till 2014) 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Aeronautical Engineering / Arts 2011, 2012, 2013
Aeronautical Engineering / Science 2011, 2012, 2013
Aeronautical (Space) (till 2014) 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Aeronautical Engineering (Space) / Arts 2011, 2012, 2013
Aeronautical Engineering (Space) / Science 2011, 2012, 2013
Aeronautical Engineering / Commerce 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013
Aeronautical Engineering / Law 2010

Course Goals

This unit contributes to the achievement of the following course goals:

Attribute Practiced Assessed
Design (Level 4) Yes 14.29%
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 5) Yes 71.45%
Information Seeking (Level 3) Yes 14.29%

These goals are selected from Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table which defines overall goals for courses where this unit is primarily offered. See Engineering & IT Graduate Outcomes Table for details of the attributes and levels to be developed in the course as a whole. Percentage figures alongside each course goal provide a rough indication of their relative weighting in assessment for this unit. Note that not all goals are necessarily part of assessment. Some may be more about practice activity. See Learning outcomes for details of what is assessed in relation to each goal and Assessment for details of how the outcome is assessed. See Attributes for details of practice provided for each goal.