Fatigue and damage tolerance evaluation of an aircraft spoiler Conference Paper uri icon


  • The spoilers on an aircraft are responsible for several tasks, including execution of roll maneuvers, lift dumping (aerodynamic "spoiling"), and braking. The examined spoiler is manufactured from carbon fiber reinforced composite material and is attached to the wing by four bearing hinges and one actuator hinge. Correct spoiler design involves knowledge of the loads acting on the spoiler, calculation of stresses and strains, and examination of possible failures. Additionally, the fatigue and damage tolerance evaluation of such a spoiler has to follow established certification protocols. This study defines a load cycle based on in-service loadings, including aerodynamic loading, wing bending, inertial loading, and actuator loading. A finite element model of the spoiler is used to calculate the reaction forces in the hinges and the strain in the carbon fiber components occurring during the load cycle. The Miner Rule is used to calculate the fatigue life of the hinges based on the computed stress. A damage tolerance evaluation is then performed assuming that different hinges have failed. Finally, a certification test for fatigue and damage tolerance evaluation of a spoiler is discussed.

author list (cited authors)

  • Hurlebaus, S., & Gaul, L.

citation count

  • 0

publication date

  • May 2005