Aircraft Structures for Engineering Students

Aircraft Structures for Engineering Students

4th Edition - March 2, 2007

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  • Author: T.H.G. Megson
  • eBook ISBN: 9780080488318

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Aircraft Structures for Engineering Students is the leading self contained aircraft structures course text. It covers all fundamental subjects, including elasticity, structural analysis, airworthiness and aeroelasticity. Now in its fourth edition, the author has revised and updated the text throughout and added new case study and worked example material to make the text even more accessible.

Key Features

  • The leading Aircraft Structures text, covering a complete course from basic structural mechanics to finite element analysis
  • Enhanced pedagogy with additional case studies, worked examples and home work exercises


Undergraduate and postgraduate students of aerospace and aeronautical engineering; Also suitable for professional development and training courses

Table of Contents

  • Part A Fundamentals of Structural Analysis
    A I Elasticity

    1. Basic elasticity
    1.1 Stress
    1.2 Notation for forces and stress
    1.3 Equations of equilibrium
    1.4 Plane stress
    1.5 Boundary conditions
    1.6 Determination of stresses on inclined planes
    1.7 Principal Stresses
    1.8 Mohr’s circle of stress
    1.9 Strain
    1.10 compatibility equations
    1.11 Plane strain
    1.12 Determination of strains on inclined planes
    1.13 Principal strains
    1.14 Mohr’s circle of strain
    1.15 Stress-strain relationships
    1.16 Experimental measurement of surface strains

    2. Two-dimensional problems in elasticity
    2.1 Two-dimensional problems
    2.2 Stress functions
    2.3 Inverse and semi-inverse methods
    2.4 St. Venant’s principle
    2.5 Displacements
    2.6 Bending of an end-loaded cantilever

    3. Torsion of solid sections
    3.1 Prandtl stress function solution
    3.2 St. Venant warping function solution
    3.3 The membrane analogy
    3.4 Torsion of a narrow rectangular strip

    A II Virtual Work, Energy and Matrix Methods

    4. Virtual work
    4.1 Work
    4.2 Principle of virtual work
    4.2.1 For a particle
    4.2.2 For a rigid body
    4.2.3 Virtual work in a deformable body
    4.2.4 Work done by internal force systems
    4.2.5 Virtual work due to external force systems
    4.3.6 Use of virtual force systems
    4.3 Applications of the principle of virtual work

    5. Energy methods
    5.1 Strain energy and complementary energy
    5.2 The principle of the stationary value of the total complementary energy
    5.3 Application to deflection problems
    5.4 Application to the solution of statically indeterminate systems
    5.5 Unit load method
    5.6 Flexibility method
    5.6.1 Self Straining method
    5.7 Total potential energy
    5.8 the principle of the stationary value of the total potential energy
    5.9 Principle of superposition
    5.10 Reciprocal theorems
    5.11 Temperature effects

    6. Matrix methods
    6.1 Notation
    6.2 Stiffness matrix for an elastic spring
    6.3 Stiffness matrix for two elastic springs in line
    6.4 Matrix analysis of pin-jointed frameworks
    6.5 Application to statically indeterminate frameworks
    6.6 Matrix analysis of space frames
    6.7 Stiffness matrix for a uniform beam
    6.8 Finite element method for continuum structures
    6.8.1 Stiffness matrix for a beam-element
    6.8.2 Stiffness matrix for a triangular finite element
    6.8.3 Stiffness matrix for a quadrilateral element

    A III Thin Plate Theory

    7. Bending of thin plates
    7.1 Pure Bending of thin plates
    7.2 Plates subjected to bending and twitsting
    7.3 Plates subjected to a distributed transverse load
    7.3.1 The simply supported edge
    7.3.2 The built-in edge
    7.3.3 The free edge
    7.4 Combined bending and in-plane loading of a thin rectangular plate
    7.5 Bending of thin plates having a small initial curvature
    7.6 Energy method for the bending of thin plates
    7.6.1 Strain energy produced by bending and twisting
    7.6.2 Potential energy of a transverse load
    7.6.3 Potential energy of in-plane loads

    A IV Structural Instability

    8. Columns
    8.1 Euler buckling of columns
    8.2 Inelastic buckling
    8.3 Effect of initial imperfections
    8.4 Stability of beams under transverse and axial loads
    8.5 Energy method for the calculation of buckling loads in columns

    9. Thin plates
    9.1 Buckling of thin plates
    9.2 Inelastic buckling of plates
    9.3 Experimental determination of critical load for a flat plate
    9.4 Local instability
    9.5 Instability of stiffened panels
    9.6 Failure stress in plates and stiffened panels
    9.7 Tension field beams
    9.7.1 Complete diagonal
    9.7.2 Incomplete diagonal tension
    9.7.3 Post buckling behaviour

    10. Structural Vibration
    10.1 Oscillation of mass/spring systems
    10.2 Oscillation of beams
    10.3 Approximate methods for determining natural frequencies

    Part B Analysis of Aircraft Structures
    B I Principles of Stressed Skin Construction

    11. Materials
    11.1 Aluminium alloys
    11.2 Steel
    11.3 Titanium
    11.4 Plastics
    11.5 Glass
    11.6 Composites
    11.7 Properties of materials

    12. Structural components of aircraft
    12.1 Loads on components
    12.2 Function of components
    12.3 Fabrication of components
    12.4 Connections Structural Vibration

    BII Airworthiness and Airframe Loads

    13. Airworthiness
    13.1 Factors of safety - flight envelope
    13.2 Load factor determination
    13.2.1 Limit load
    13.2.2 Structural deterioration and uncertainties in design
    13.2.3 Variation in structural strength
    13.2.4 Fatigue

    14. Airframe loads
    14.1 Inertia loads
    14.2 Symmetric manoeuvre loads
    14.2.1 Level flight
    14.2.2 General case
    14.3 Normal acceleration associated with various types of manoeuvre
    14.3.1 Steady pull-out
    14.3.2 Correctly banked turn
    14.4 Gust loads
    14.4.1 Sharp-edged gust
    14.4.2 The "graded" gust
    14.4.3 Gust envelope

    15. Fatigue
    15.1 Safe life and fail safe structures
    15.2 Designing against fatigue
    15.3 Fatigue strength of components
    15.4 Prediction of aircraft fatigue life
    15.5 Creep
    15.6 Crack propagation

    B III Bending, Shear and Torsion of Thin-Walled Beams

    16. Bending of open and closed, Thin-Walled Beams
    16.1 Symmetrical Bending
    16.1.1 Assumptions
    16.1.2 Direct Stress Distribution
    16.1.3 Anticlastic Bending
    16.2 Unsymmetrical Bending
    16.2.1 Sign Conventions and notation
    16.2.2 Resolution of bending moments
    16.2.3 Direct Stress distribution due to bending
    16.2.4 Position of the neutral axis
    16.2.5Load intensity, shear force and bending moment relationships, general case
    16.3 Deflections due to bending
    16.4 Calculation of Section Properties
    16.4.1 Parallel Axes Theorem
    16.4.2 Theorem of Perpendicular Axes
    16.4.3 Second Moments of Area of Standard Sections
    16.5 Application of bending theory

    17. Shear of beams
    17.1 General stress, strain and displacement relationships
    17.2 Open section beams
    17.2.1 Shear centre
    17.3 Closed section beams
    17.3.1 Twist and warping
    17.3.2 Shear centre

    18. Torsion of beams
    18.1 Closed section beams
    18.1.1 Displacements associated with the Bredt-Batho shear flow
    18.1.2 Condition for zero warping
    18.2 Torsion of open section beams
    18.2.1 Warping of cross-section

    19. Combined open and closed section beams
    19.1 Bending
    19.2 Shear
    19.3 Torsion

    20. Structural Idealisation
    20.1 Principle
    20.2 Idealisation of a panel
    20.3 Effect of idealisation on the analysis of open and closed section beams
    20.3.1 Bending of open and closed section beams
    20.3.2 Shear of open section beams
    20.3.3 Shear of closed section beams
    20.3.4 Alternative method for the calculation of shear flow distribution
    20.3.5 Torsion of open and closed section beams

    B IV Stress Analysis of Aircraft Components

    21. Wing spars and box beams
    21.1 Tapered wing spar
    21.2 Open and closed section box beams
    21.3 Beams having variable stringer areas

    22. Fuselages
    22.1 Bending
    22.2 Shear
    22.3 Torsion
    22.4 Effect of cut-outs

    23. Wings
    23.1 Three-boom shell
    23.2 Bending
    23.3 Torsion
    23.4 Shear
    23.5 Shear centre
    23.6 Tapered wings
    23.7 Deflections
    23.8 Effect of cut-outs

    24. Fuselage frames and wing ribs
    24.1 Principles of Stiffener/web construction
    24.2 Fuselage frames
    24.3 Wing ribs

    25. Laminated composite structures
    25.1 Elastic constants of simple lamina
    2.5.2 Stress-strain relationships for an orthotropic ply (macro-approach)
    25.2.1 Specially orthotropic ply
    25.2.2 Generally orthotropic ply
    25.3 Thin-walled composite beams
    25.3.1 Axial load
    25.3.2 Bending
    25.3.3 Shear
    25.3.4 Torsion

    BV Structural and Loading Discontinuities

    26. Closed section beams
    26.1 General aspects
    26.2 Shear distribution at a built-in end
    26.3 Torsion of a rectangular section beam
    26.4 Shear lag

    27. Open section beams
    27.1 I-section beam subjected to torsion
    27.2 Arbitrary section beam subjected to torsion
    27.3 Distributed torque loading
    27.4 General system of loading
    27.5 Moment couple (bimoment)
    27.5.1 Shear flow due to MT

    B VI Introduction to Aeroelasticity

    28. Wing problems
    28.1 Types of problem
    28.2 Load distribution and divergence
    28.2.1 Wing torsional divergence (two-dimensional)
    28.2.1 Wing torsional divergence (finite wing)
    28.2.3 Swept wing divergence
    28.3 Control effectiveness and reversal
    28.3.1 Aileron effectiveness and reversal (two-dimensional)
    28.3.2 Aileron effectiveness and reversal (finite wing)
    28.4 Introduction to Flutter
    28.4.1 Coupling
    28.4.2 Critical flutter speed
    28.4.3 Prevention of flutter
    28.4.4 Experimental determination of flutter speed.
    28.4.5 Control surface flutter


    Case Study : Design of an Aircraft Fuselage

    Requirement: The aircraft

    A1. Specification
    A2. Data
    A3. Initial calculations
    A4. Balancing out calculations
    A5. Fuselage loads
    A6. Fuselage design calculations

Product details

  • No. of pages: 824
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Butterworth-Heinemann 2007
  • Published: March 2, 2007
  • Imprint: Butterworth-Heinemann
  • eBook ISBN: 9780080488318

About the Author

T.H.G. Megson

T.H.G. Megson is a professor emeritus with the Department of Civil Engineering at Leeds University (UK). For Elsevier he has written the market leading Butterworth Heinemann textbooks Aircraft Structures for Engineering Students and Introduction to Aircraft Structural Analysis (a briefer derivative of the aircraft structures book), as well as the text/ref hybrid Structural and Stress Analysis.

Affiliations and Expertise

Professor Emeritus, Department of Civil Engineering, Leeds University, UK

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