Dynamics and control of tailless aircraft

Ralph Paul, William L. Garrard

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

1 Scopus citations


Recently there has been considerable interest in the development of aircraft which have reduced vertical tail size compared with conventional aircraft. The tail of an aircraft produces a large radar signature and the requirement for stealth in new military aircraft necessitates the design of “tailless” aircraft. Reduction in vertical tail size results in lateral-directional response characteristics which are a great deal different from those of conventional aircraft. The objective of this paper is to examine in detail the effects of reduction of tail size on lateral-directional dynamics on a fighter type aircraft. It is shown that without stability augmentation, reduced tail size results in unacceptable handling qualities. Structured singular value or μ-synthesis is used to design controllers at two representative flight conditions. These controllers are shown to provide acceptable handling qualities and robustness to a variety of modeling errors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages9
StatePublished - Jan 1 1997
Event22nd Atmospheric Flight Mechanics Conference, 1997 - New Orleans, United States
Duration: Aug 11 1997Aug 13 1997


Other22nd Atmospheric Flight Mechanics Conference, 1997
CountryUnited States
CityNew Orleans

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    Paul, R., & Garrard, W. L. (1997). Dynamics and control of tailless aircraft. 724-732. Paper presented at 22nd Atmospheric Flight Mechanics Conference, 1997, New Orleans, United States.