Rubber on the Runway – The Aircraft Dynamic Loads Facility
Robert Doggett, Jr. & Thomas Yager
Tuesday, May 5, 2015 at 2:00 P.M. in Reid 1 auditorium in the Integrated Services Building
(video) within the Langley firewall only
This lecture will provide the “inside story” of how the one-of-a-kind Aircraft Dynamic Loads Facility was conceived, designed and built in the late 40’s and early 50’s and the many activities and tests aimed at improving not only aircraft ground handling performance but also better control of ground vehicles. These activities included a variety of aircraft landing gear tests at the ALDF, development of special ground friction measuring vehicles, better understanding of tire hydroplaning, many joint programs involving specially instrumented aircraft, 15-year Annual Tire/Runway Friction Workshop at NASA Wallops Flight Facility, Space Shuttle landing gear and runway surface evaluations, and support of aircraft accident investigations when loss of traction is suspected as a contributing cause. In conclusion, this unique facility is scheduled for demolition this calendar year due to lack of customers and to further justify building newer, better test facilities to solve future aeronautical and space problems.
Robert V. (Bob) Doggett, Jr. began his combined NACA/NASA career in June 1957 following his graduation from Randolph-Macon College. He was assigned to the Dynamic Loads Division where he embarked on an almost thirty-eight year career at Langley working in structural dynamics with an emphasis on aeroelasticity. He authored more than fifty technical papers and is co-holder of two patents on divergence testing. In addition to being a researcher, he held several supervisory positions, including head of the Aeroelasticity Branch and assistant chief of the Structural Dynamics Division. He received a number of awards including the NASA Exceptional Service Medal. He maintains a connection to NASA Langley as a Distinguished Research Associate.
Thomas J. Yager earned his bachelor’s degree in engineering science from the University of Portland in Portland, Oregon in June 1963, two weeks prior to starting work at NASA Langley. His NASA career has involved many evaluations of aircraft landing gear systems in tests at the Aircraft Landing Dynamics Facility and a variety of instrumented aircraft ground handling performance studies. He authored or co-authored over 150 technical reports, articles and presentations describing the results of his studies. He has supported over 40 aircraft accident investigations when loss of traction is suspected to be a contributing cause. He received a number of awards including the NASA Exceptional Engineering Achievement Medal. Tom retired from civil service in January 2007 but maintains a connection to NASA Langley as a Distinguished Research Associate. When not at his NASA office, he likes to participate in several charity organizations, playing with his seven grandchildren, traveling with his wife, Susan, giving conference/workshop presentations and doing some consulting work.