Aeroelastic Computations under Uncertainty


Title: ENACT – Efficient non-linear Aeroelasticity Computations under Uncertainty

Investigators: Waigan Yao, Simão Marques

Sponsor: EPSRC – Grant n.: EP/K005863/1 (First Grant Scheme)


Project Backgroud

Novel solutions for future air vehicles are likely to involve complex interactions between structures and aerodynamics. Such interactions can be highly non-linear and sensitive to system and model parameters, which require the development of methods capable of quantifying the effects and implications of uncertainty (structural and aerodynamic) on transonic aeroelasticity. This project will address the technical and scientific challenges preventing the practical simulation of transonic non-linear aeroelastic instabilities under uncertainty by implementing an analysis framework based on novel, highly efficient computational techniques. The project aims to create a step change in high-fidelity aeroelastic analysis by making uncertainty quantification (UQ) an integral part of a CFD Harmonic Balance framework, which will enable the assessment of aleatory and epistemic uncertainty through the development of suitable UQ techniques for unsteady CFD and non-linear aeroelastic instabilities.

The goal of this project is to enable uncertainty quantification in realistic non-linear aeroelastic simulations. This requires a multi-disciplinary approach due to the inherent physical nature of the problem, ie. aeroelasticity. In order to provide new knowledge about the nature of flow induced vibrations and the impact of variability, UQ methods suitable for multi-disciplinary, multi-fidelity, non-linear problems are required. The challenges with performing the analysis described above include: computational resources required; UQ for complex phenomena and multi-disciplinary model uncertainty quantification. This project will reduce the computational cost by developing an Aeroelastic-HB/UQ software framework that will enable high-fidelity aeroelastic analysis under uncertainty. The characteristics of non-linear aeroelasticity problems pose additional challenges to UQ. The successful integration of UQ with the HB method will overcome these difficulties; further UQ tools to assess model fidelity and model uncertainty will be developed, pushing the state-of-the-art of UQ for unsteady CFD and aeroelasticity.


Sample Results

LCO velocity position diagram from Aeroelastic Harmonic Balance code
Delta Wing LCO Position-Velocity Diagram

Worshop Series:

NIACE, January 2014



Weigang Yao, Simão P. Marques, "Prediction of Transonic Limit-Cycle Oscillations Using an Aeroelastic Harmonic Balance Method," AIAA Journal, (2015), accessed May 05, 2015. doi:

 The Influence of Structural Variability on Limit Cycle Oscillation Behaviour15th AIAA/ISSMO Multidisciplinary Analysis and Optimization Conference‌, 2014, 10.2514/6.2014-3276

Weigang Yao, Simão P. Marques, Prediction of Transonic LCOs using an Aeroelastic Harmonic Balance Method44th AIAA Fluid Dynamics Conference‌, Atlanta, GA, 2014, 10.2514/6.2014-2310,

Weigang Yao, Simão Marques, An Aeroelastic Harmonic Balance Solver Using High-Order CFD, Royal Aeronautical Society Applied Aerodynamics Group Conference, Bristol, U.K., 2014,  An Aeroelastic Harmonic Balance Solver Using High-Order CFD

Richard Hayes, Simão Marques, Weigang Yao, Analysis of Transonic Limit Cycle Oscillations under Uncertainty, Royal Aeronautical Society Aircraft 4th Structural Design Conference, Belfast, U.K., 2014, LCO_UQ_paper, LCO_UQ_presentation

Simão Marques, Weigang Yao, Prediction of Limit Cycle Oscillations Using an Implicit Aeroelastic-Harmonic Balance Method, Royal Aeronautical Society Aircraft 4th Structural Design Conference, Belfast, U.K., 2014, Raes Struct Design

Weigang Yao, Simão Marques, Transonic Nonlinear Aeroelastic Simulations Using An Harmonic Balance Method, 6th European Computational Fluid Dynamics Conference‌, Barcelona, Spain, 2014, 6th European CFD conference Abstract, A-HB Presentation

Weigang Yao, Simão Marques,  Richard Hayes, Investigation of Limit Cycle Oscillations Using Aeroelastic-Harmonic Balance Method, 4th EASN Workshop on Flight Physics and Aircraft Design, Aachen, Germany, 2014, EASN


Data Sets