Airship Research and Development in the Areas of Design, Structures, Dynamics and Energy Systems

  • Stockbridge, Casey (Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, Clarkson University) ;
  • Ceruti, Alessandro (DIEM, Department of Mechanical, Nuclear, Aviation, and Metallurgical Engineering, University of Bologna) ;
  • Marzocca, Pier (Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, Clarkson University)
  • Received : 2012.06.15
  • Accepted : 2012.06.25
  • Published : 2012.06.30


Recent years have seen an outpour of revived interest in the use of airships for a number of applications.Present day developments in materials, propulsion, solar panels, and energy storage systems and the need for a more eco-oriented approach to flight are increasing the curiosity in airships, as the series of new projects deployed in recent years show; moreover, the exploitation of the always mounting simulation capabilities in CAD/CAE, CFD and FEA provided by modern computers allow an accurate design useful to optimize and reduce the development time of these vehicles.The purpose of this contribution is to examine the different aspects of airship development with a review of current modeling techniques for airship dynamics and aerodynamics along withconceptual design and optimization techniques, structural design and manufacturingtechnologies and, energy system technologies. A brief history of airships is presented followed by an analysis of conventional and unconventional airships including current projects and conceptual designs.


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