An understanding of the conceptual and preliminary design of aircraft is imperative for the success of any aeronautical engineer working
for a prime contractor. Few engineers are directly involved in conceptual and preliminary design. Most work in other specialized technologies
that provide contributions to the aircraft design and operation. Understanding the significance of their contribution, and the multi-disciplinary
optimization that occurs in the design process whereby their contribution of technology is traded against other technologies, is critical
to producing a well-rounded aerospace engineer. ABET accreditation requires a capstone course in aerospace vehicle design in order
to achieve this goal.
The goal of ADAC is to provide instruction in aircraft conceptual and preliminary design so
that the student understands:
- the design processes
- how appropriate technologies are applied
- how to identify and reduce risk
- how to
produce a superior product.
ADAC will also provide consulting services in aircraft design and operations to industry and academia.
Of This Website
The website contains information in five categories. Click on one of the links above.
Links to annotations for Dan Raymer's book "Aircraft Design: A Conceptual Approach. Fourth Edition", published by the
AIAA. This constitutes the majority of the material.
Schaufele Annotations: Links to annotations for Roger Schaufele's
book "The Elements of Aircraft Preliminary Design", published by Aries Publications
AIAA Competitions: Links and other information
related to the AIAA Aircraft Design Competitions.
Support: Other spreadsheets and documents related to the aircraft conceptual design
Experience: A summary of the experience of the principal of ADAC.
The Lockheed L-1011 and Douglas DC-10 were both designed to meet the American Airlines requirement for an ORD-LAX widebody. The commercial
aircraft industry might be very different today if either company had looked beyond that requirement, considered the future growth
in big high bypass ratio fan engines, and built a twin-engined aircraft instead.
Cathay Pacific L-1011 on the notorious approach to Runway 13 at the old Kai Tak airport in Hong Kong.
American Airlines DC-10 on final approach.
Sometimes a successful design is a matter of being in the right place at the right time. The DHC-6 Twin Otter was designed as a floatplane,
but with fixed landing gear it happened to meet the FAA commuter airplane definition of having a maximum takeoff gross weight under
12,500 lb and carried 19 passengers. It was sturdy and reliable with PT-6 engines, and was popular with commuter airlines. It has
a maximum wing loading of only 30 lb/ft2
and the ride can be uncomfortable on a hot day. The type certificate has been purchased by
Viking Air in Vancouver, BC. First flight of the Series 400 aircraft was on Feb 19, 2010.
Tony Hays has worked in the aircraft industry for 50 years. He has worked for aircraft manufacturers in the United Kingdom, Canada
and the U.S. He has taught classes in aircraft design in the U.S. and China. He has a B.Sc. degree in Aeronautical Engineering from
Bristol University and an S.M. degree in Aero/Astro Engineering from MIT. Click on the Experience button above for a complete CV.
Telephone: US: +1.949.573.4225