A number of in-flight breakups occur every year. The fundamentals of in-flight breakups reveal that there are only three root causes: fatigue of a key structural element, flutter, and overload. Each of these causes will be discussed and explained. An example of an in-flight breakup in which the experts disagreed as to the root cause will be discussed in detail. The discussion will include analysis of the aircraft wreckage, fundamental airplane fluid dynamics, trajectory analyses, and airplane performance. The presentation is supported with videos, demonstrations, and high-definition animations.
Dr. Winn is a mechanical/aeronautical engineer and Principal Emeritus of Engineering Systems Inc. (ESI). ESI provides a wide range of technical support capabilities, including metallurgical, materials, aeronautical, mechanical, structural, electrical, safety, automotive, and audio/visual services. He has been with ESI since 1994 and during that time has reconstructed hundreds of aircraft accidents. Dr. Winn retired from the U.S. Air Force in 1991 after a 22-year career. He was an instructor pilot in four different Air Force aircraft, taught aeronautical engineering at the USAF Academy, and served as Chief Scientist of the USAF European Office of Aerospace Research and Development in London, England. He is a Fellow of the AIAA and a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society. He has served as a member of the SAE AC-9C Subcommittee on Aircraft Icing Technology. Dr. Winn has directed research; published over 70 technical papers, technical reports, and articles; and has given numerous presentations on a wide variety of technical and educational topics.