Arguably a spacecraft as well as an aircraft, the Perlan 2 glider is part of a mission to fly higher than any plane ever before, and reach an altitude of 90,000 feet. To reach that altitude, the Perlan 2 will essentially surf the skies on stratospheric mountain waves. Watch the wired.com video to learn more about this amazing mission.
Siemens PLM partner ATA Engineering was involved in helping prove the design. With an 85 foot wingspan, Perlan’s long flexible wings are more susceptible to flutter than most gliders, and ATA used simulation software (including Femap and NX Nastran) to help predict the flutter behavior of the aircraft. The glider was brought to ATA’s testing facility in San Diego, CA where engineers performed ground vibration testing and FE analysis on the aircraft structure.