A computer solution to parachute design problems
In this thesis a Pascal computer program is presented which calculates a proposed design of parachute from some simple input parameters, of the type specified by a customer to a parachute company. The program reduces by a significant degree time spent by parachute engineers in the preliminary design stages. Parachute design is a process which (in common with much engineering design) can be regarded as consisting of a number of separate calculations. The most suitable method (or methods) for each calculation were selected after a thorough investigation of parachute design techniques. The chosen methods must be sufficiently accurate and readily conform to a computer treatment. The data required by the program have been collected from various sources and are stored in a number of files on a floppy disk. The program is applied to requirements received by a parachute company and results obtained compared with the actual parachutes designed. The program is highly interactive with the user who is able to dispute its selection of values for various parameters. Because the designer can make a rapid and objective choice between a number of methods for various calculations, the existence of this program contributes to his knowledge of the relevance of the parameters involved in, and his understanding of, parachute design. Examples of these techniques are given in the text. Possibilities for expanding and improving the program exist in a number of areas. In some cases the data required for a particular parachute or particular design methods are not available or do not exist. Provision has been made for such data to be included in the program when they are received.