Thick-walled composite cylinder fabrication to support composite rotor shaft development for CH-47 chinook

Patrick R. Darmstadt, Anthony Hendrickson, Jeron Moore, Kelli Barbato, Robert Vitlip, Zhenning Hu

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Modifications are being made to the CH-47 Drive System in order to increase power capacity and lower operating costs. In addition to designing in capacity improvements to the CH-47 Drive System, Boeing is investigating weight reduction technologies for the CH-47F Block II Program. One opportunity is focused on advancing the Manufacturing Readiness Level (MRL) and Technology Readiness Level (TRL) of a Fiber-Reinforced Polymer (Composite) Section of the Chinook's Aft Rotor Shaft. The Composite Section is calculated to save over 50 pounds in the Aft Section of the aircraft. The Hybrid Steel/Composite Aft Rotor Shaft Development was split into a phased program to advance the MRL and TRL while keeping program risk low. Early phases defined component requirements and developed a preliminary ply table to validate weight predictions. The development then moved into manufacturability studies, revising the preliminary ply table and fabricating and inspecting a Half-Length Composite Shaft (Half-Shaft). As the design matures, future phases will encompass full-scale shaft fabrication and risk-reduction and qualification tests. This paper summarizes the interim design considerations of a full-scale hybrid composite shaft and fabrication and inspection of a thick-walled composite tube to develop the technology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1760-1769
Number of pages10
JournalAnnual Forum Proceedings - AHS International
StatePublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes
Event73rd American Helicopter Society International Annual Forum and Technology Display 2017 - Fort Worth, United States
Duration: May 9 2017May 11 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Engineering(all)


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