Murray B. Anderson, Sverdrup Technology, Inc., USA
With the advent of streamlined acquisition processes, such as simulation-based acquisition, the need for superior weapon simulation capability is critical to developing launch and jettison envelops. Given the limited test assets allocated to envelop development, certification agencies are today being asked by new weapons programs to develop the same large envelops produced 10 years ago with only 10 percent of the assets. An additional complication is that weapon systems are becoming increasingly complex: nonaxisymmetric, unstable or nearly unstable at launch, employed from weapons bays, employed at very high angles of attack. Given these complexities, it is becoming increasing common for weapons to exhibit non-linear and/or highly coupled behavior during launch or jettison events. For the engineer, having a system that behaves in a non-linear fashion greatly complicates post-flight analysis. It is critical, therefore, to have tools available that can optimize a large number of independent variables to produce the desired output. This paper introduces one such tool and shows its application to sample flight test data.