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Commercial Airplane Design Principles - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780124199538, 9780124199774

Commercial Airplane Design Principles

1st Edition

5.0 star rating 1 Review
Author: Pasquale Sforza
Hardcover ISBN: 9780124199538
eBook ISBN: 9780124199774
Imprint: Butterworth-Heinemann
Published Date: 19th February 2014
Page Count: 622
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Commercial Airplane Design Principles is a succinct, focused text covering all the information required at the preliminary stage of aircraft design:  initial sizing and weight estimation, fuselage design, engine selection, aerodynamic analysis, stability and control, drag estimation, performance analysis, and economic analysis.

The text places emphasis on making informed choices from an array of competing options, and developing the confidence to do so.

Key Features

  • Shows the use of standard, empirical, and classical methods in support of the design process
  • Explains the preparation of a professional quality design report
  • Provides a sample outline of a design report
  • Can be used in conjunction with Sforza, Commercial Aircraft Design Principles to form a complete course in Aircraft/Spacecraft Design


aircraft designers, aircraft maintenance and modification organizations, students in aerospace engineering.

Table of Contents


Introduction and Outline of an Airplane Design Report

1: Market Survey and Mission Specification

1.1 A growing market for commercial aircraft

1.2 Technology drivers

1.3 Cargo aircraft

1.4 Design summary

2: Preliminary Weight Estimation

2.1 The mission specification

2.2 The mission profile

2.3 Weight components

2.4 Empty weight trends

2.5 Fuel characteristics

2.6 Estimation of the takeoff and empty weights

2.7 Weight estimation for turboprop-powered aircraft

2.8 Design summary

2.9 Nomenclature

3: Fuselage Design

3.1 Introduction

3.2 Commercial aircraft cabin volume and pressure

3.3 General cabin layout

3.4 Cabin cross-section

3.5 Estimation of fuselage width

3.6 Estimation of fuselage length

3.7 Influence of fuselage fineness ratio

3.8 Estimation of nose cone and tail cone length

3.9 Cargo containers

3.10 Emergency exits

3.11 Recent developments in fuselage design

3.12 Design summary

3.13 Nomenclature

4: Engine Selection

4.1 Introduction

4.2 Landing requirements

4.3 Wing loading in landing

4.4 Landing field length

4.5 Wing loading in takeoff

4.6 Takeoff distance

4.7 Cruise requirements

4.8 Construction of the engine selection design chart

4.9 Flight test data for landing and power approach

4.10 Turbojet and turbofan engines

4.11 Turboprops

4.12 Engine-out operation and balanced field length

4.13 Design summary

4.14 Nomenclature

5: Wing Design

5.1 General wing planform characteristics

5.2 General airfoil characteristics

5.3 Lifting characteristics of the wing

5.4 Determination of wing maximum lift in the cruise configuration

5.5 High lift devices

5.6 Determination of CL,max for the wing in takeoff and landing configurations

5.7 Development and layout of the preliminary wing design

5.8 Design summary

5.9 Nomenclature

6: Tail Design

6.1 Preliminary tail design

6.2 Refined horizontal tail design

6.3 Refined vertical tail design

6.4 Design summary

6.5 Nomenclature

7: Landing Gear Design

7.1 Introduction

7.2 General characteristics of commercial jet transport landing gear

7.3 Aircraft tires and wheels

7.4 Shock absorbing landing gear struts

7.5 Landing gear brake systems

7.6 Landing gear retraction

7.7 Design summary

7.8 Nomenclature

8: Refined Weight and Balance Estimate

8.1 Process for refining the weight estimate

8.2 Limit load factor

8.3 The design dive speed

8.4 Wing group weight

8.5 Fuselage group weight

8.6 Landing gear group weight

8.7 Tail group weight

8.8 Propulsion group weight

8.9 Nacelle group weight

8.10 Flight controls group weight

8.11 Auxiliary power unit group weight

8.12 Instrument group weight

8.13 Hydraulic and pneumatic group weight

8.14 Electrical group weight

8.15 Avionics group weight

8.16 Equipment and furnishing group weight

8.17 Air conditioning and anti-icing group weight

8.18 Wing group center of gravity

8.19 Fuselage group center of gravity

8.20 Landing gear group center of gravity

8.21 Tail group center of gravity

8.22 Propulsion group center of gravity

8.23 Aircraft center of gravity

8.24 Design summary

8.25 Nomenclature

9: Drag Estimation

9.1 Introduction

9.2 Skin friction drag

9.3 Form drag

9.4 Drag build-up by components

9.5 Wing and tail drag

9.6 Fuselage drag

9.7 Nacelle and pylon drag

9.8 Landing gear drag

9.9 Flap and slat drag

9.10 Other drag sources

9.11 Calculation of the zero-lift drag coefficient neglecting wave drag

9.12 Compressibility drag at high subsonic and low transonic speeds

9.13 The area rule

9.14 Calculation of the wave drag coefficient

9.15 Effects of sweepback

9.16 The drag coefficient of the airplane

9.17 Thrust available and thrust required

9.18 Design summary

9.19 Nomenclature

10: Aircraft Performance

10.1 The range equation

10.2 Takeoff performance

10.3 Climb

10.4 Descent

10.5 Landing

10.6 Turboprop-powered aircraft

10.7 The air data system

10.8 Design summary

10.9 Nomenclature

11: Aircraft Pricing and Economic Analysis

11.1 Introduction

11.2 Capital cost

11.3 Direct operating cost

11.4 Indirect operating cost

11.5 Breakeven load factor

11.6 Design project activity

11.7 Nomenclature

Appendix A: Airfoil Characteristics

Appendix B: 1976 US Standard Atmosphere Model

Appendix C: Airfoil and Wing Theory and Analysis

Appendix D: Graphs of Critical Mach Number

Appendix E: Units and Conversion Factors

Appendix F: General Database for Commercial Aircraft



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© Butterworth-Heinemann 2014
19th February 2014
Hardcover ISBN:
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About the Author

Pasquale Sforza

Pasquale Sforza received his PhD from the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn in 1965. He has taught courses related to commercial airplane design at the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn and the University of Florida. His research interests include propulsion, gas dynamics, and air and space vehicle design. Dr. Sforza has also acted as Co-Editor of the Journal of Directed Energy and Book Review Editor for the AIAA Journal. His previous books include Theory of Aerospace Propulsion (Butterworth-Heinemann, 2011) and Commercial Airplane Design Principles, (Butterworth-Heinemann, 2014)

Affiliations and Expertise

Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL, USA

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