This paper deals with the use of photogrammetry for the experimental identification of structural and inertial properties of helicopter rotor blades4. The identification procedure is based upon theoretical/numerical algorithms for the evaluation of mass and flexural stiffness distributions which are an extension of those proposed in the past by Larsen, whereas the torsional properties (stiffness and shear center position) are determined through the Euler–Bernoulli beam theory. The identification algorithms require the knowledge of the blade displacement field produced by known steady loads. These data are experimentally obtained through photogrammetric detection technique, which allows the identification of 3D coordinates of labeled points (markers) on the structure through the correlation of 2D digital photos. Indeed, the displacement field is simply evaluated by comparing the markers positions on the loaded configuration with those on the reference one. The proposed identification procedure, numerically and experimentally validated in the past by the authors, has been here applied to the structural characterization of two main rotor blades, designed for ultra-light helicopters. Strain gauges measurements have been used to assess the accuracy of the identified properties through natural frequencies comparison as well as to evaluate the blades damping characteristics.
Bernardini, G., Serafini, J., Enei, C., Mattioni, L., Ficuciello, C., Vezzari, V. (2016). Structural Characterization of Rotor Blades Through Photogrammetry. MEASUREMENT SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY, 27(6), 1-13 [10.1088/0957-0233/27/6/065401].