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Life cycle cost modelling as an aircraft design decision support tool

Thokala, Praveen (2009) Life cycle cost modelling as an aircraft design decision support tool University of Southampton, School of Engineering Sciences, Doctoral Thesis , 205pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)


This report summarizes the work that has been carried out as part of the FLAVIIR project, a 5 year research program looking at technologies for future unmanned air vehicles. A novel classification of aircraft product definition is utilised and a framework to estimate the life cycle cost of aircraft using the product definition is presented. The architecture to estimate the life cycle cost and the associated models are described.
The acquisition costs are estimated using a hierarchical structure and a discrete simulation model is used to estimate the maintenance and operation costs. The acquisition cost model uses an object oriented approach with libraries of materials and processes integrated into the cost model. Risk analysis is performed to identify the important design parameters and uncertainty in the model. The acquisition cost model developed has the capability to estimate the costs of aircraft structures manufactured using metal-based materials as well as non-metal-based materials.
The discrete event simulation model estimates the operation and maintenance costs of a fleet of aircraft using the mission characteristics, aircraft performance and the logistics data as input. The aircraft performance parameters are calculated by using aerodynamic analysis along with performance analysis models and the simulation model utilises a novel methodology to link aircraft performance with survivability analysis for estimating the maintenance costs.
A framework is presented in which the cost models developed can be integrated into the conceptual design process to facilitate the comparison between different configurations. The usage of the life cycle cost framework as a decision support tool is outlined and three case studies are presented which include composites vs metals trade-off analysis, optimisation studies and web deployment for real time cost estimation. The novel contributions of this research are outlined and interesting avenues for future research that can be pursued are identified.

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Published date: September 2009
Organisations: University of Southampton


Local EPrints ID: 72021
PURE UUID: 650d1ea1-2d8f-424f-b664-2ef75d0f3a7e

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Date deposited: 15 Jan 2010
Last modified: 18 Jul 2017 23:56

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