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NASA evaluates new wing sensor

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only
by Staff Writers
Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. (UPI) Jul 29, 2008
The U.S. space agency said it is evaluating an advanced, fiber optic-based sensing technology that could aid development of active wing shape control.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration said controlling a wing's shape during flight would allow it to take advantage of aerodynamics and improve overall aircraft efficiency.

"The Fiber Optic Wing Shape Sensor system measures and displays the shape of the aircraft's wings in flight," NASA said. "The system also has potential for improving aircraft safety when the technology is used to monitor the aircraft structure."

Flight tests on NASA's Ikhana, a modified Predator-B unmanned aircraft adapted for civilian research, are under way at NASA's Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base in California. The space agency said the tests represent one of the first comprehensive flight validations of fiber optic sensor technology.

"Generations of aircraft and spacecraft could benefit from work with the new sensors if the sensors perform in the sky as they have in the laboratory," said Lance Richards, the project's leader.

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Russia And China May Co-Design New Passenger Plane
Farnborough, UK (RIA Novosti) Jul 28, 2008
Russia may launch a joint venture with China to continue the development of a new passenger airliner, MS-21, the head of a Russian state-run aviation corporation said on Monday.

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