Open Access
Lopes, Leonard Vincent
Graduate Program:
Aerospace Engineering
Doctor of Philosophy
Document Type:
Date of Defense:
September 01, 2009
Committee Members:
  • Kenneth Steven Brentner, Dissertation Advisor
  • Kenneth Steven Brentner, Committee Chair
  • Philip John Morris, Committee Member
  • Anthony A Atchley, Committee Member
  • Lyle Norman Long, Committee Member
  • Acoustics
  • Aerospace
  • Airframe
  • Landing Gear
  • Noise
  • Prediction
  • Scheme
This thesis describes a new landing gear noise prediction system developed at The Pennsylvania State University, called Landing Gear Model and Acoustic Prediction code (LGMAP). LGMAP is used to predict the noise of an isolated or installed landing gear geometry. The predictions include several techniques to approximate the aeroacoustic and aerodynamic interactions of landing gear noise generation. These include 1) a method for approximating the shielding of noise caused by the landing gear geometry, 2) accounting for local flow variations due to the wing geometry, 3) the interaction of the landing gear wake with high-lift devices, and 4) a method for estimating the effect of gross landing gear design changes on local flow and acoustic radiation. The LGMAP aeroacoustic prediction system has been created to predict the noise generated by a given landing gear. The landing gear is modeled as a set of simple components that represent individual parts of the structure. Each component, ranging from large to small, is represented by a simple geometric shape and the unsteady flow on the component is modeled based on an individual characteristic length, local flow velocity, and the turbulent flow environment. A small set of universal models is developed and applied to a large range of similar components. These universal models, combined with the actual component geometry and local environment, give a unique loading spectrum and acoustic field for each component. Then, the sum of all the individual components in the complete configuration is used to model the high level of geometric complexity typical of current aircraft undercarriage designs. A line of sight shielding algorithm based on scattering by a two-dimensional cylinder approximates the effect of acoustic shielding caused by the landing gear. Using the scattering from a cylinder in two-dimensions at an observer position directly behind the cylinder, LGMAP is able to estimate the reduction in noise due to shielding by the landing gear geometry. This thesis compares predictions with data from a recent wind tunnel experiment conducted at NASA Langley Research Center, and demonstrates that including the acoustic scattering can improve the predictions by LGMAP at all observer positions. In this way, LGMAP provides more information about the actual noise propagation than simple empirical schemes. Two-dimensional FLUENT calculations of approximate wing cross-sections are used by LGMAP to compute the change in noise due to the change in local flow velocity in the vicinity of the landing gear due to circulation around the wing. By varying angle of attack and flap deflection angle in the CFD calculations, LGMAP is able to predict the noise level change due to the change in local flow velocity in the landing gear vicinity. A brief trade study is performed on the angle of attack of the wing and flap deflection angle of the flap system. It is shown that increasing the angle of attack or flap deflection angle reduces the flow velocity in the vicinity of the landing gear, and therefore the predicted noise. Predictions demonstrate the ability of the prediction system to quickly estimate the change in landing gear noise caused by a change in wing configuration. A three-dimensional immersed boundary CFD calculation of simplified landing gear geometries provides relatively quick estimates of the mean flow around the landing gear. The mean flow calculation provides the landing gear wake geometry for the prediction of trailing edge noise associated with the interaction of the landing gear wake with the high lift devices. Using wind tunnel experiments that relate turbulent intensity to wake size and the Ffowcs Williams and Hall trailing edge noise equation for the acoustic calculation, LGMAP is able to predict the landing gear wake generated trailing edge noise. In this manner, LGMAP includes the effect of the interaction of the landing gear's wake with the wing/flap system on the radiated noise. The final prediction technique implemented includes local flow calculations of a landing gear with various truck angles using the immersed boundary scheme. Using the mean flow calculation, LGMAP is able to predict noise changes caused by gross changes in landing gear design. Calculations of the mean flow around the landing gear show that the rear wheels of a six-wheel bogie experience significantly reduced mean flow velocity when the truck is placed in a toe-down configuration. This reduction in the mean flow results is a lower noise signature from the rear wheel. Since the noise from a six-wheel bogie at flyover observer positions is primarily composed of wheel noise, the reduced local flow velocity results in a reduced noise signature from the entire landing gear geometry. Comparisons with measurements show the accuracy of the predictions of landing gear noise levels and directivity. Airframe noise predictions for the landing gear of a complete aircraft are described including all of the above mentioned developments and prediction techniques. These show that the nose gear noise and the landing gear wake/flap interaction noise, while not significantly changing the overall shape of the radiated noise, do contribute to the overall noise from the installed landing gear.