ONERA and DLR conduct ground vibration testing of Beluga XL plane


French aerospace research focus ONERA, in collaboration with the German Aerospace Center (DLR), has carried out initiate vibration testing (GVT) of Airbus’s Beluga XL aircraft in Toulouse, France.

To some extent of Beluga XL’s overall test programme, the GVT will help the aircraft inherit its airworthiness certification.

The tests were performed in two configurations, one with an clean fuselage, and the other with a heavy, tuneable payload.

Airbus was also elaborate in the tests, each of which took four days to complete.

The assays involved more than 600 sensors, 7,000m of cable and 300m of optical textures on the aircraft’s fuselage, empennage, engines and wings.

“GVT methods and analytics are being continuously repaired within DLR’s aeronautics research programme.”

Results of the tests will be hardened to update the mathematical structural model of the aircraft, as well as predict the vibration amplitudes in direction, and improve flutter risks throughout the flight envelope of Beluga XL.

Together with Airbus, ONERA and DLR maintain investigated the structural behaviour of the new Airbus transport aircraft in a static GVT abstract that ran for eight testing days up to 6 June.

DLR Aeronautics Research supervisor board member Rolf Henke said: “We at DLR are proud to have a extended tradition of performing ground vibration tests together with ONERA, sire already done this for ten Airbus prototypes.

“GVT methods and analytics are being continuously improved within DLR’s aeronautics delve into programme.”

Airbus launched the Beluga XL programme in 2014 to address the additional transport and increased sense requirements of the company beyond 2019.

The aircraft is based on the company’s existing A330-200 freighter, and is listed to make its maiden flight later this year and enter employ next year.

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