TIME TO REINVENT THE GENERAL AVIATION AIRCRAFT.

Robert F. Stengel

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Revival of the moribund general-aviation industry demands reinvention of the small general aviation aircraft to shape it into what might be called the Modern Equipment General Aviation (MEGA) airplane. Such radical rethinking could cut prices to where ordinary persons could afford them, boost production to 50,000 a year by the year 2000, and establish general aviation as an important adjunct to commercial air transport. An exciting array of new technologies is applicable to moderate-volume production of general-aviation aircraft, because they emphasize flexibility - using computers, communication networks, and robotic devices, including numerically controlled machines - to perform a wide variety of functions from preliminary design to laying on the paint. New materials promise weight savings and drag reduction. Dramatic breakthroughs in subsonic aerodynamics made in recent years may soon be followed by others. Great strides made in automobile engines, such as electronic ignition and stratified charge, could be applied to reciprocating engines for small airplanes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages24-27
Number of pages4
Volume25
No8
Specialist publicationAerospace America
StatePublished - Aug 1 1987

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aerospace Engineering

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