Twin engined propeller driven commuter aircraft pose
particular challenges in their design as well as in their
operation. This thesis examines both aspects through computer
techniques geared specifically towards such aircraft.
A program (GATEP, General Aviation Twin Engine Propeller
driven) is developed to assist in the preliminary design
phase. It is utilised to compare the characteristics of
individual designs, conduct parametric studies around a
baseline design, and estimate potential improvements. The
mass, aerodynamics, and vital performance items are
calculated, with particular attention focused on
characteristics critical to this type of aircraft, such as the
Balanced Field Length and Second Segment Climb Gradient.
Studies are presented showing the applicability of GATEP to a
typical commuter design.
The operational optimisation of propeller driven commuters
is addressed through SCOPE (Short haul Commuter Optimum
Profile Evaluation), a program designed to determine optimum
flight profiles for the short stage routes along which these
aircraft operate. Multivariate Optimisation (M.V.O.)
techniques are used to analyse the entire flight. The climb
and descent segments are shown to be particularly important,
and the methods used are applicable to common flying
techniques (without requiring an autopilot). Flight profile
optimisation has been previously treated as a mathematical
exercise in relation to large jet aircraft. SCOPE uniquely
offers a method for studying propeller driven types, and
places emphasis on realistic operating techniques including
Air Traffic Control constraints.
A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.