MEng Aerospace Engineering / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Flight Dynamics

Course unit fact file
Unit code AERO32202
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 3
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? No


This course unit detail provides the framework for delivery in 20/21 and may be subject to change due to any additional Covid-19 impact.  Please see Blackboard / course unit related emails for any further updates

Flight dynamics is the study of the performance, stability, and control of a wide range of airborne vehicles. It is a subject which underpins the performance and safe operation of such vehicles. This course deals with the dynamic stability and control of aircraft, especially the dynamic response of aircraft to atmospheric disturbances and pilot control input. It provides the necessary ground-work to the students to understand the principles of flight dynamics which are essential in the design of aircraft. The intended learning outcomes are focussed on the understanding of flight dynamic principles and the development of skills for the analysis and evaluation of the stability and control characteristics of aircraft. The course is delivered via a combination of lectures, workshops, tutorials and flight simulator lab session. 


Impart an in-depth understanding of the behaviour of longitudinal and lateral dynamic stability modes and key aircraft parameters which affect the characteristics of these modes

Develop an ability to analyse the longitudinal and lateral dynamic stability characteristics of aircraft

Enhance the understanding of principles of flight dynamics using flight simulators


Systems of axes, Variable notation, Aircraft reference geometry, 1h

Derivation of aircraft equations of motion, 2h  

Derivation of linearized equations of motion, 1h

Aerodynamic derivatives and control derivatives, 5h

The dynamics of 2nd order systems, 1h

Longitudinal dynamics stability and response, 2h

Lateral dynamics stability and response, 2h

Assessment methods

Method Weight
Other 10%
Written exam 80%
Report 10%

Other - Online quiz

Feedback methods

Marks of online quiz will be returned to the students at the end of the test. The lab worksheet will be marked and returned with feedback in Week 12.

Recommended reading


Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 15
Practical classes & workshops 8
Tutorials 3
Independent study hours
Independent study 74

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Shan Zhong Unit coordinator

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