LeRoy Junior Davis was a wonderful aerospace engineer. He developed a computer system program to keep birds from bringing down jets and a program to determine stress and strains on the B-2 stealth bomber.
In the early days of using computers in aerospace engineering there was a severe issue with jets. A jet would be flying miles above the earth at supersonic speeds. Suddenly a bird crashed through the windshield. The bird eliminated the pilot. The jet crashed to the earth. This was a loss of a million dollars or more. This was taking place over and over once again.
A messy option was used before computer systems. A frozen chicken or turkey was filled into a cannon. A jig was built to hold a windshield at a particular specified angle. The bird was shot out of the cannon at the windshield. If the bird went through the windshield, the windscreen was put at a various angle and the experiment was attempted again.
LeRoy was offered the project of establishing a computer program that would imitate the physical procedure. The qualities of the bird, the windshield and the angle were taken into the computer program. Immediately the computer simulated the bird strike thousands of times until the problem was solved. The program defined the right angle at which the windscreen could be put so that a bird would bounce off instead of crash through the windscreen.
LeRoy’s computer program is the basis for all computer programs utilized by aerospace companies to resolve this program. The report of this program is on file at the Wright Aerodynamics Laboratory. The report just lists the name of LeRoy Junior Davis one time.
A second computer program LeRoy developed was utilized in the style of the B-2 stealth bomber. The B-2 stealth bomber integrates advanced technologies for the world’s most advanced airplane. Due to the fact that it has a distinct flying wing configuration, it is a highly flexible multi-role bomber, efficient in providing both nuclear and traditional bombs.
A team was commissioned by the United States Air Force to build the B-2 Bomber. Northrop Corporation of California, and Boeing Corporation of Washington, were the two principal members of the group.
Boeing built the outboard part of the B-2 bomber wing, the aft center fuselage section, landing gears, fuel system and weapons delivery system. Northrop construct the rest.
The B-2 provided a big issue for engineers, specifically at Northrop. The skin of the B-2 was to be constructed of a brand-new material called composite material (www.whatengineers.com/what-do-aerospace-engineers-do). The reason for this was that the B-2 had to be a stealth bomber. It needed to be undetectable by radar.
Given that it was brand-new, the conventional approaches to identify the stresses and stress on the brand-new material did not work. In the beginning Northrop did not have the computer programs to do the stress analysis on the B-2. If Northrop might not produce the required results for the stress tests, Boeing would take over that work.
Northrop designated LeRoy to develop the computer system program to mimic dropping a 10,000 pound weight on the suggestion of the wing. His computer system program would have to predict how far the suggestion of the wing would deflect within one foot. If it the computer system program failed, Boeing would take control of the analysis.
By modifying his previous programs and utilizing some unique techniques he understood, he developed the computer program that passed the test.
The physical test was done. An actual 10,000 pound weight was dropped on a mockup of the B-2 wing. The amount of deflection was within inches of exactly what took place in the physical test.
Because of LeRoy Junior Davis, Northrop was able to keep the engineering analysis of the B-2 bomber.
LeRoy Junior Davis was a great aerospace engineer because of the significant programs he established to solve the bird strike problem and to supply analysis for the B-2 bomber.