Understanding the Nonlinear Dynamics Governing Vertical-Lift Vehicles with Variable-speed, Fixed Rotors

Students Needed:
UndergraduateUndergraduate Research Program Opportunities
Professor Moore in Mechanical and Materials Engineering is seeking a talented undergraduate student to perform research on this project throughout the coming Fall and Spring semesters. US Citizenship is required. The project focuses on determining how multiple rotors operating at different speeds can interact with each through the vibrations of the vehicle and methods for exploiting these interactions to enhance performance and comfort. The student will work closely with Prof. Moore and two other undergraduate students on experimental measurements and computational simulations of a model VL vehicle.

The positions pay $14 per hour and support 10 hours of research per week for 30 weeks total. The periods of work will be November 15th through December 10th in 2021 and January 17th through July 29th in 2022. Hours and weeks are flexible. No background is necessary – the student will be trained and given the opportunity to learn the necessary basics. The student will be required to present at the Nebraska Academy of Sciences in the Spring semester. The project is further described in the abstract provided below. Interested students should contact Prof. Moore by email at kmoore@unl.edu.

To meet growing demands for clean and affordable transit options in urban environments, NASA has targeted the creation of revolutionary vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) vehicles that introduce a new dimension into transportation. Although implementing electric rotors in such vehicles eliminates air pollution, they do not address the noise pollution produced by them. Furthermore, it is currently unknown how nonlinear interactions arise in the dynamics of VTOL vehicle and how these interactions affect the performance and noise production of the vehicle. As such, this research will produce a new understanding of the nonlinear dynamics governing VTOL vehicles with variable-speed, fixed rotors.

The dynamics of model VTOL vehicles will be investigated computational and analytically, and these results will be verified through comparable experiments. The resulting research will be disseminated through local and national conferences, journal publications, and through webinars with NASA collaborators.