Testing Shape Changing Wing Flaps

This photo was taken by an automated Wing Deflection Measurement System (WDMS) camera in the G-III, that photographed the ACTE experimental wing every second during the flight and a NASA F-15D chasing the G-III.

The Adaptive Compliant Trailing Edge (ACTE) experimental flight research project is a joint effort between NASA and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, to determine if advanced flexible trailing-edge wing flaps, developed and patented by FlexSys, Inc., can both improve aircraft aerodynamic efficiency and reduce airport-area noise generated during takeoffs and landings.

The experiment is being carried out on a modified Gulfstream III (G-III) business aircraft that has been converted into an aerodynamics research test bed at NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center. The ACTE project involves replacement of both of the G-III’s conventional 19-foot-long aluminum flaps with the shape changing flaps that form continuous bendable surfaces.

Image Credit: NASA

source NASA