Flight Service Evaluation of Composite Components on Bell 206L and Sikorsky S-76 Helicopters.
NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION HAMPTON VA LANGLEY RESEARCH CENTER
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Progress on two programs to evaluate composite structural components in flight service on commercial helicopters is described. Thirty-six ship sets of composite components that include the litter door, baggage door, forward fairing, and vertical fin have been installed on Bell Model 206L helicopters that are operating in widely different climatic areas. Four horizontal stabilizers and ten tail rotor spars that are production components on the S-76 helicopter will be tested after prescribed periods of service to determine the effects of the operating environment on their performance. Concurrent with the flight evaluation, specimens from materials used to fabricate the components are being exposed in ground racks and tested at specified intervals to determine the effects of outdoor environments. Results achieved from 14,000 hours of accumulated service on the 206L components, tests on a S-76 horizontal stabilizer after 1600 hours of service, tests on a S-76 tail rotor spar after 2300 hours service, and two years of ground based exposure of material coupons are reported. Author
- Laminates and Composite Materials
- Test Facilities, Equipment and Methods