Applied Sciences (2020-04-01)

Helicopter Safe Landing Trajectory after Main Rotor Actuator Failures

  • Yunjie Wang,
  • Chen Jiang,
  • Yuwen Zhang,
  • Haowen Wang

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 10, no. 2917
p. 2917


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Main rotor actuator failure leads to catastrophic accidents for single main rotor helicopters. This paper focuses on safe landing trajectories after an actuator is locked in place by the remaining actuators, without introducing other control inputs. A general swashplate geometry is described, and new reconfiguration solutions for the control mixer are presented. The safe landing trajectories are obtained by formulating a nonlinear optimal control problem based on a nonlinear helicopter dynamic model and geometry constraints due to actuator failure. Safe landing trajectory results are shown with various initial forward velocities of all actuator failure cases. The safe initial speed boundaries are also explored by employing speed sweeps.