The Effects of Runway Roughness on Aircraft Fatigue Life

by Anthony Gerardi, Wright Lab, Wright-Patterson AFB, United States,
Dave Kreuger, Wright Lab, Wright-Patterson AFB, United States,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Aircraft/Pavement Interaction: An Integrated System

Abstract: A computer code developed within the Flight Dynamics Directorate of the Wright Laboratory was used to simulate the dynamic response of heavy aircraft operating on runways with various levels of roughness. The aircraft dynamic response is represented as vertical accelerations at the aircraft center of gravity. These load factors were transferred to stresses at various airframe locations. These ground stresses, along with flight stresses, were used as input to a PC based fatigue crack growth analysis computer code. A fatigue analysis was conducted to determine the effects of runway surface roughness on the fatigue crack growth at several airframe locations on bomber and transport aircraft.

Subject Headings: Airport and airfield pavements | Stress analysis | Cracking | Fatigue life | Standards and codes | Flight

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