Aircraft Conceptual Design Training

Commitment 5 days, 7-8 hours a day.
Language English
User Ratings Average User Rating 4.8 See what learners said
Delivery Options Instructor-Led Onsite, Online, and Classroom Live


Aircraft Conceptual Design Training has been attended by almost 3,000 people to date and has been presented at Lockheed, Boeing, NASA Langley, Rockwell, British Aerospace, the Swedish Royal Institute of Technology (KTH), SAAB Aircraft, Linkoping University (Sweden), Samsung Aerospace, and the Chilean Aeronautical Academy (APA), as well as numerous public presentations through AIAA. Aimed at the working engineer in an industry or government aircraft design department, the Aircraft Conceptual Design course is also highly useful for those teaching aircraft design and offers a broad overview of the entire subject of Aircraft Conceptual Design in an integrated, cohesive, and enjoyable set of lectures. All required theoretical methods are covered in the course, but the biggest strength of the Aircraft Conceptual Design Training course is that it provides a “real-world” insight into the actual practice of aircraft design. Numerous interesting and informative examples are given including design failures!

The Aircraft Conceptual Design Training course covers both the analytical and design layout skills required for the initial design of new aircraft concepts and emphasizes practical aircraft design including configuration layout development and design “rules-of-thumb” as well as the analytical tasks of design such as aerodynamic analysis and vehicle sizing. Special topics of interest include stealth design, VSTOL and helicopter design, design optimization, carpet plotting, and the use of computers and CAD in conceptual design.

  • 5 days of Aircraft Conceptual Design Training with an expert instructor
  • Aircraft Conceptual Design Electronic Course Guide
  • Certificate of Completion
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee



Upon completing this Aircraft Conceptual Design Training course, learners will be able to meet these objectives:

  • Developing a design in response to requirements
  • Laying out the design on a drafting table or CAD screen
  • Analyzing it for aerodynamics, propulsion, structure, weights, stability, cost, and performance
  • Calculation of range or sizing to a specified mission
  • Trade Studies, carpet plots, multivariable/multidisciplinary optimization, and……
  • Learning from your work to make the next design version better!
  • We can adapt this Aircraft Conceptual Design Training course to your group’s background and work requirements at little to no added cost.
  • If you are familiar with some aspects of this Aircraft Conceptual Design course, we can omit or shorten their discussion.
  • We can adjust the emphasis placed on the various topics or build the Aircraft Conceptual Design around the mix of technologies of interest to you (including technologies other than those included in this outline).
  • If your background is nontechnical, we can exclude the more technical topics, include the topics that may be of special interest to you (e.g., as a manager or policy-maker), and present the Aircraft Conceptual Design course in a manner understandable to lay audiences.

The target audience for this Aircraft Conceptual Design Training course:

  • All

The knowledge and skills that a learner must have before attending this Aircraft Conceptual Design  course are:

  • Basic technical knowledge


  • INTRODUCTION: Overview of the design process, requirements definition, and end products of design.
  • QUICK DESIGN & SIZING TECHNIQUES: Methods to quickly determine aircraft weight and size required to meet mission requirements, rapid aero/weights/propulsion methods, and design trade studies.
  • WING/TAIL GEOMETRY SELECTION: Selection of wing geometry and tail arrangement.
  • THRUST-TO-WEIGHT AND WING LOADING, INITIAL SIZING: Initial selection of wing loading and thrust-to-weight (or horsepower-to-weight) ratio to satisfy requirements such as stall speed, climb rate, and maneuverability. Refined estimation of aircraft takeoff weight and fuel weight to attain the design mission, and determination of the required fuselage, wing, and tail sizes.
  • CONFIGURATION LAYOUT AND LOFT: Design layout of a credible aircraft configuration arrangement including external geometry, conic lofting, flat-wrap development, smoothness verification, cross-section definition, and internal layout. Design layout of wings and tails including airfoil interpolation, trapezoidal and non-trapezoidal geometries, and wing location guidelines.
  • AERO & STRUCTURES CONSIDERATIONS: Design guidance and rules-of-thumb for the creation of configuration layouts with good aerodynamics and structural arrangement.
  • SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS: Design impacts of observability (radar, IR, visual, and aural), vulnerability, producibility, and maintainability.
  • SYSTEMS INTEGRATION: Design integration of landing gear, hydraulics, electrics, pneumatics, and avionics.
  • PAYLOAD, PASSENGERS, & CREW: Design layout of the crew station, passenger compartment, cargo bays, and weapons integration.
  • PROPULSION INTEGRATION: Jet engine integration including engine selection, engine scaling, engine location considerations, inlet geometry and location, and nozzle geometry. Propeller engine integration includes engine selection and location considerations, cowling geometry, and propeller sizing. Aircraft fuel system considerations.
  • AERODYNAMIC ANALYSIS: Methods for estimating the aerodynamic lift and drag from low subsonic through supersonic speeds. Methods discussed include the equivalent skin friction method, the component drag build-up method, Oswald’s efficiency factor, the leading edge suction method, and the Sears-Haack wave drag method. Introduction to Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD).
  • STABILITY AND CONTROL ANALYSIS: Methods for determining if the design satisfies essential stability and control requirements including trim, nosewheel liftoff, static stability, departure susceptibility, and spin recovery.
  • PROPULSION ANALYSIS: Methods for calculation of the installed net propulsive force for jet or propeller-driven aircraft, including installation corrections, inlet drag, nozzle drag, and propeller thrust calculation.
  • LOADS, STRUCTURES, AND WEIGHTS: Aircraft loads, aerospace materials, and properties. Introduction to the Finite Element Method (FEM). Estimation of aircraft weights and mass moments using statistical models and corrections for advanced materials.
  • PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS: Performance analysis methods for level flight, climb, glide, takeoff, landing, and maneuver. Energy maneuverability methods for combat analysis and minimum time/fuel to climb. Fighter measures of merit include agility and post-stall maneuver.
  • TRADE STUDIES AND COST ANALYSIS: Refined sizing techniques and discussion of industry methods. Sizing matrix and carpet plot optimization techniques. Use of performance constraint curves to determine the optimal aircraft. Life Cycle Cost analysis using statistical and operational data. Airline economic analysis.
  • COMPUTER-AIDED CONCEPTUAL DESIGN: Use of CAD in the conceptual design environment. Overview of computer graphics methods and mathematics for aircraft design. Demonstration of conceptual design CAD and integrated analysis and optimization (RDS-Professional).
  • VTOL, HELICOPTER, AND DERIVATIVE AIRCRAFT DESIGN: Overview of jet VSTOL design and analysis including concepts and integration issues. Helicopter aerodynamics, performance, controls, design, and sizing techniques. Design considerations for the development of derivatives of existing aircraft, including performance, weight, and cost estimation.
  • INNOVATIVE DESIGN CONCEPTS: Overview of innovative design concepts including Canard, Flying Wing, Joined-Wing, Blended Wing Body, UAV, Asymmetric, Hypersonic, etc.
  • DESIGN EXAMPLES: Review of prior lessons by step-by-step design examples from initial requirements and first sketch to completed configuration layout and optimization carpet plot, including a This class can optionally be taught as a two-week intensive in-house course with substantial student participation including seminar discussions and an in-class project in aircraft conceptual design.
Aircraft Conceptual Design TrainingAircraft Conceptual Design Training Course Wrap-Up