• SARAH project,
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Improving aircraft safety in the event of emergency ditching

SARAH (Increased Safety & Robust Certification for ditching of Aircraft & Helicopters): a Horizon 2020 collaborative project

Published on April 15, 2019 Updated on July 4, 2022
The SARAH project aims to establish new simulation-based approaches to the analysis of aircraft and helicopter ditching. The project is coordinated by IBK-Innovation and its consortium involves several academic and industrial players, including the LHEEA lab at Centrale Nantes. Results of SARAH are expected to support the trustworthiness of aviation services.
The main expected outcomes of the project are:
  • more robust and reliable solutions for aircrafts and helicopters, based on a novel methodology and technologies;
  • an improved understanding of environmental phenomena as well as solutions to protect the aircraft/helicopter by analysing wave effects, ground effects and handling qualities;
The project combines three investigation methods: ditching tests; numerical simulation of ditching; ditching accident analysis.

This project develops methods to analyse emergency ditching. This will inform the design process of aircraft and helicopters, improve ditching procedures for pilots and ultimately enhance or develop European regulations in this area. - Professor David Le Touzé, Deputy Director of LHEEA.

Within SARAH, Centrale Nantes, with the Research Laboratory in Hydrodynamics, Energy and Atmospheric Environment (LHEEA), in collaboration with CNR-INSEAN, NextFlow Software and HydrOcean will further develop and validate the high fidelity software SPH-Flow.  In particular, it consists in adapting the software's (generic) coupling interface with an FEM solver to ditching purposes. Additional work is dedicated to the optimisation of the SPH-solver performance.

In addition, Centrale Nantes is tasked with the work package WP5 dedicated to building datasets for the validation of the physical models and of the computational tools developed in the other WPs.  LHEEA is in charge of the test campaign focused on helicopters to be carried out in the wave tank (50 m x 30 m x 5 m and equipped with 48 independent wave generator paddles). The aim is to achieve experimental conditions which, besides being useful for validation purposes, are as representative as possible of the actual ditching scenarios. 

The SARAH project began in October 2016 and will conclude its activities, having a lifespan of three years, in September 2019. The total budget of the project is approximately €6.6M, funded by the European Commission under H2020-EU.3.4. - SOCIETAL CHALLENGES - Smart, Green And Integrated Transport (Grant Agreement number 724139).
Published on April 15, 2019 Updated on July 4, 2022