This paper presents a summary of the principles and processes used to design a ski-jump ramp profile for the UK’s Future Aircraft Carrier (CVF) optimised for the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF).
The paper includes an overview of the CVF and JSF programs, a history and summary of the ski-jump ramp and the principles of its use in the shipborne Short Take-Off (STO) manoeuvre.
The paper discusses the importance of defining optimisation boundaries including specified objectives, aircraft configurations and environmental conditions. It then demonstrates the process of balancing the design drivers of air vehicle performance and landing gear loads to achieve an optimum profile. Comparisons are made between the proposed candidate CVF ramp profile and the current in service ski-jump design as designed for the Harrier family of aircraft.
The paper briefly covers some of the important issues and factors that have been experienced when a theoretical profile is translated into a physical ramp fitted to a ship, principally the effects on aircraft operations due to build and in-service variation from the nominal profile.