This paper explores a novel structural design concept for a demonstrator of a high altitude photovoltaic feeder airship. The presented structural design concept aims to minimize the use of strategic materials in the structure of the airship, but also to maximize the ease of construction of the structure. The proposed design concept and method an effective analysis of historic airship structures considering their efficiency vs. weight and desired performances. By this analysis a novel structural design has been defined to reach the ambitious goal of a lighter and cheaper structure concept which can ensure comparable performances with traditional rigid airships. A discoid shaped airship with a central column has been taken into account. Structural calculations and constructive design has been presented in depth. © 2012 SAE International.
Quite-Rigid Airship Structure Concept and Design for Enhanced Hovering Capability / Madonia, Mauro; Trancossi, Michele; Coppola, Agostino. - In: SAE INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF AEROSPACE. - ISSN 1946-3855. - STAMPA. - Volume 5, Issue 1:(2012), pp. 101-112. [10.4271/2012-01-1892]