An evaluation of PC-based flight simulators for use in aerodynamics and flight mechanics courses
Patrick H. Murphy, University of Massachusetts Lowell, United States
University of Massachusetts Lowell . Awarded
This thesis presents the results of flight testing a PC-based aircraft simulator as if it were an actual airplane. The study followed the sequence from aircraft selection, to simulator-hardware and software selection, and flight testing. The aircraft selected was a Cessna 182S. The flight simulator software used was Microsoft Flight Simulator 2000, and the hardware used was the Simhawk Pro PC compatible flight simulator. The performance flight tests conducted include airspeed calibration, drag and power requirements, climb performance, stall speed and maximum lift coefficient, and maximum speed and range. The flight-testing followed a standard flight-test engineering format. Some theoretical data are presented with the intent of providing some validation of results. Using a PC-based flight simulator to teach the concepts of flight test engineering is recommended as an effective classroom tool. The results of the flight-tests and their comparison with theoretical calculations demonstrated that this technique can be used in an aerodynamics or flight mechanics course.
Murphy, P.H. An evaluation of PC-based flight simulators for use in aerodynamics and flight mechanics courses. Master's thesis, University of Massachusetts Lowell.
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