Green aviation project tests shape changing wing flaps
A NASA F-15D flies chase for the G-III Adaptive Compliant Trailing Edge (ACTE) project.
This photo was taken by an automated Wing Deflection Measurement System (WDMS) camera in the G-III that photographed the ACTE wing every second during the flight. The 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.