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Three boron/aluminum aft pylon “boat tail” skins were designed, fabricated, and installed on three DC-10 aircraft for a five-year flight service demonstration test. Inspection and tests of the skins will establish the ability of the composite to withstand long-time flight service exposures to high temperatures, sonic fatigue, and flutter. The results of a preliminary testing program yielded room and elevated temperature data on the tension, compression, in-plane shear, interlaminar shear, bolt bearing, and tension fatigue properties of the oriented eleven-ply boron/aluminum laminates, and this information, together with a stress analysis, was used to obtain Federal Aviation Administration approval. Present state-of-the-art technology was used in the fabrication of the skins, and these were installed on the existing titanium substructure with the same number and size mechanical fasteners as are used for the present titanium skins.
composite materials, aluminum, boron, mechanical properties, evaluation, tests
Unit chief, Design Composites Structures Development, Douglas Aircraft Company, McDonnell Douglas Corporation, Long Beach, Calif.