Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

First Advisor

Curtis H. Spenny, PhD


This study investigated the eligibility of the KC-135 air refueling boom for improved capabilities in the areas of control and performance. By using a thick airfoil cross-section for the boom tube, rather than the current circular cross-section, the ability to increase the lift characteristics was verified Prior compiled test data was used for comparison against analytical computer solutions. The possibility and effects of control frequency oscillations were also examined due to the unstable nature of the flow at test conditions. Additionally, the effect of other cross-section shapes, such as the blunt fairing, on the size of the flyable envelope for the trailing aircraft was investigated by using FORTRAN coding. Results show that the KC-135 air refueling boom can be modified for better lift and performance envelope capabilities.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number