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Ice Accretion on Aircraft

This project required our experts to analyze aircraft the ice accretion that would have occurred on a business jet given the meteorological conditions that existed at the time of the aircraft loss of control and accident while on approach to landing.  As assessment was also made as to whether the amount of ice buildup would have been sufficient to result in the aircraft upset and accident at the flight conditions of the aircraft which were determined from both the recorded radar data and flight data recorder data.

The project required expertise in the use and limitations of the NASA aircraft ice accretion code, LEWICE.  Critical to the accurate determination of the ice accretion was the determination of the correct LEWICE meteorological and flight parameters throughout the aircraft's approach while in icing conditions.  These inputs was obtained from both the flight data recorder information and a reconstruction from the recorded radar data.  Results of the icing analysis was compared to experimental data in order to understand the effect of the ice buildup on aircraft stall.

The analysis calculated the amount and shape of the buildup of ice on the aircraft's lifting surfaces at different positions along the span.  The presence of ice on the lifting surfaces and the conditions that the aircraft was operating in at the time indicate that the pilot should have activated the ice protection system upon entering the icing conditions and should have maintained a higher airspeed.

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