Virginia Tech has been a world leader in electronic theses and dissertation initiatives for more than 20 years. On January 1, 1997, Virginia Tech was the first university to require electronic submission of theses and dissertations (ETDs). Ever since then, Virginia Tech graduate students have been able to prepare, submit, review, and publish their theses and dissertations online and to append digital media such as images, data, audio, and video.
University Libraries staff are currently digitizing thousands of pre-1997 theses and dissertations and loading them into VTechWorks. Most of these theses and dissertations are fully available to the public, but we will, in general, honor requests by the item's author to restrict access to Virginia Tech only. See our process for Requesting that Material be Amended or Removed.
Materials that are restricted to Virginia Tech only may be requested via your own university or public library's Interlibrary Loan program or through the VTechWorks request form that appears when you try to access the item. You might also be able to obtain a copy of the work through ProQuest's database of theses and dissertations. If you are on a Virginia Tech campus but are unable to find the pre-1997 thesis or dissertation you are seeking in VTechWorks, you may also be able to order a physical copy from library storage. Please check the library catalog at http://www.lib.vt.edu/ for physical copies.
The development and implementation of a flight test program for an unmanned aircraft is a multidisciplinary challenge. This thesis presents the development and implementation of a rigorous test program for the flight test of a Geometrically Scaled Joined Wing SensorCraft Remotely Piloted Vehicle from concept through successful flight test. The design methodology utilized in the development of the test program is presented, along with the extensive formal review process required for the approval of the test plan by the Air Force Research Laboratory. The design, development and calibration of a custom instrumentation package is also presented along with the setup, procedure and results from all testing. Results are presented for a wind tunnel test for air data boom calibration, propulsion system static thrust testing, a bifilar pendulum test for experimental calculation of mass moments of inertia, a static structural loading test for structural design validation, a full taxi test and a successful first flight.