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AERO1400: Introduction to Aircraft Construction and Design (2018 - Semester 2)

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Unit: AERO1400: Introduction to Aircraft Construction and Design (6 CP)
Mode: Normal-Day
On Offer: Yes
Level: Junior
Faculty/School: School of Aerospace, Mechanical & Mechatronic Engineering
Unit Coordinator/s: Dr Wong, KC
Session options: Semester 2
Versions for this Unit:
Campus: Camperdown/Darlington
Pre-Requisites: None.
Brief Handbook Description: The study towards BE(Aeronautical) involves learning about the Design, Analysis, Flight, and Operation of Aircraft and other Flight Platforms. This unit facilitates the training towards becoming professional aeronautical engineers through a globally-unique experiential-learning opportunity to provide a strong background familiarity with aircraft hardware. This unit is designed to educate and facilitate the learning of aircraft design, basic aircraft construction techniques, the operation of light aircraft and the registration and regulations relating to light aircraft. In addition to hands-on skills on the construction phase, this unit facilitates learning in motivations for unique aircraft design, aircraft aerodynamics, flight mechanics, structural aspects and other design-related issues. Teamwork plays a very important role in this unit; the ability to work with peers and supervising staff is an invaluable skill sought after by employers of engineers.

Throughout the semester, students will be actively participating in the construction of a light aircraft, and of aircraft structural components. The aircraft is to be constructed under current Australian Civil Aviation Regulations so that students will gain an insight into all aspects of the process. By being a part of the construction team, students will also experience the organisational requirements necessary to successfully complete a complex engineering project. The aircraft construction workshop component is complemented with lectures, homework, research and assignments to further enhance the learning experience on aircraft. The final outcome will be that students gain a good foundation of: aircraft design and analyses methods; innovative methods of construction; techniques for selecting, sizing and stressing components; regulatory requirements for certification; off-design requirements; construction tolerances; and team-work requirements in undertaking complex engineering projects.
Assumed Knowledge: Some basic skills with engineering workshop hand tools is desirable.
Lecturer/s: Dr Wong, KC
Timetable: AERO1400 Timetable
Time Commitment:
# Activity Name Hours per Week Sessions per Week Weeks per Semester
1 Lecture 2.00 2 13
2 Workshop 3.00 1 13
3 Independent Study 5.00 13
T&L Activities: Workshop: Practical Session - attendance is compulsory, and will be noted.

Independent Study: Homework, research, and assignments

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
Students are expected to be able to make basic design decisions based on operational and/or manufacturing requirements through various exercises and assignments. Design (Level 1)
Experiential learning opportunities while constructing the aircraft to provide familiarity with aircraft components and applied design of aircraft. Aircraft and flight platforms are a key focus of professional aeronautical engineering. Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 2)
Students are required to perform basic flight performance analysis based on fundamental physics. These analyses are related to physical design parameters on typical aircraft. Maths/Science Methods and Tools (Level 1)
Students are required to undertake research into various relevant aircraft related topics, utilising library and internet resources. Information Seeking (Level 2)
Proper documentation is a very important aspect of meeting regulatory and certification requirements for aircraft. This is facilitaed through report writing on relevant aviation regulations, and the keeping of clear and concise logbooks for practical work undertaken while constructing the aircraft throughout the semester. Communication (Level 2)
All practical work done on the aircraft has to satisfy strict regulatory requirements of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) Australia, which all professional aeronautical engineers need to be familiar with. Professional Conduct (Level 2)
Under supervision, students work in small teams constructing a light aircraft. Everyone in turn, takes on team leadership responsibilities to manage the weekly tasks, as well as managing the workflow of team members. Project and Team Skills (Level 2)

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 1)
1. Understanding of the concepts of aircraft configuration and its influence on flight performance.
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 2)
2. Skills obtained through hands-on construction experience of aircraft components.
Information Seeking (Level 2)
3. Ability to use information resources, including technical research papers, to understand the aircraft design process.
Communication (Level 2)
4. Ability to create presentations for assignment submissions and to discuss and present information obtained via homework tasks
5. Ability to maintain a clear record of practical work completed through freehand sketches and descriptions in a logbook.
Professional Conduct (Level 2)
6. Familiarity with aviation regulations which promotes the safe design, manufacture and operation of aircraft.
Project and Team Skills (Level 2)
7. Ability to work as a team member to complete the progressive assembly of a kitplane.
8. Being able to complete the given task on schedule.
Assessment Methods:
# Name Group Weight Due Week Outcomes
1 Workshop Participation Yes 15.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 2, 5, 6, 7, 8,
2 Project Report - Homework tasks No 5.00 Multiple Weeks 1, 3, 4, 6,
3 Log Book progress 1 No 2.00 Week 3 2, 5, 8,
4 Log Book progress 2 No 3.00 Week 6 2, 5, 8,
5 Log Book progress 3 No 5.00 Week 9 2, 5, 8,
6 Log Book final No 10.00 Week 13 2, 5, 8,
7 Assignment 1 No 7.00 Week 5 (Monday, 12 pm) 3, 4, 6,
8 Assignment 2 No 10.00 Week 10 (Monday, 12 pm) 1, 3, 4, 6,
9 Assignment 3 No 13.00 Week 13 (Thursday, 11 am) 1, 3, 4, 6,
10 Quiz 01 No 10.00 Week 5 1, 2, 3, 6,
11 Quiz 02 No 6.00 Week 10 1, 2, 3, 6,
12 Quiz 03 No 14.00 Week 12 1, 2, 3, 6,
Assessment Description: Workshop Participation: Punctuality and completion of practical exercises

Log Book: Log books are updated after each practical session to sketch (freehand) and describe in detail all work undertaken (dated and signed by supervisor).

Project Report: Homework tasks. Brief discussions on given papers and/or references are required.

Assignment: practical assignments

Quiz: In class quizzes
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.

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

Week Description
Week 1 Lectures: Enhancing the Aeronautical Engineering Learning Experience
Prac: Introduction to the aircraft construction project, workshop safety and facilities, and supervising staff.
Week 2 Lectures: Enhancing the Aeronautical Engineering Learning Experience; Introduction to Aircraft Design - Design Methodology
Prac: Aircraft Construction
Week 3 Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Design Phases
Prac: Aircraft Construction
Assessment Due: Log Book progress 1
Week 4 Prac: Aircraft Construction
Lectures - Introduction to Aircraft Design - Aerodynamic Forces
Week 5 Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Design Information Retrieval
Prac: Aircraft Construction
Assessment Due: Assignment 1
Assessment Due: Quiz 01
Week 6 Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Design to Requirements
Prac: Aircraft Construction
Assessment Due: Log Book progress 2
Week 7 Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Configuration Options
Prac: Aircraft Construction
Week 8 Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Configuration Options
Prac: Aircraft Construction
Week 9 Prac: Aircraft Construction
Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Case Study
Assessment Due: Log Book progress 3
Week 10 Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Design Evaluations
Prac: Aircraft Construction
Assessment Due: Assignment 2
Assessment Due: Quiz 02
Week 11 Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Design Technologies
Prac: Aircraft Construction
Week 12 Prac: Aircraft Construction
Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Design Technologies; Weight and Balance
Assessment Due: Quiz 03
Week 13 Lectures: Introduction to Aircraft Design - Summary and Design Challenges
Prac: Conclusion of Aircraft Construction project
Assessment Due: Log Book final
Assessment Due: Assignment 3

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, 2014
Aeronautical (Space) (till 2014) 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014
Aeronautical Mid-Year 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019
Aeronautical 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019
Aeronautical (Space) 2015

Course Goals

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

Attribute Practiced Assessed
Design (Level 1) Yes 20.95%
Engineering/IT Specialisation (Level 2) Yes 17.17%
Maths/Science Methods and Tools (Level 1) Yes 0%
Information Seeking (Level 2) Yes 16.83%
Communication (Level 2) Yes 19%
Professional Conduct (Level 2) Yes 16.38%
Project and Team Skills (Level 2) Yes 9.67%

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.