An instability in the form of a self-excited, bounded longitudinal oscillation may occur in aircraft landing gear when one or more wheels lock due to excessive braking. The instability usually appears at ground speeds below 40 knots (20 m/s) and results from interaction between structural elasticity and the nonlinear characteristics of tire-runway friction. A nonlinear mathematical model is developed to study the dynamics of this divergence in a braked, dual tire landing gear. Analytical methods are presented to determine critical ground speeds in terms of runway friction characteristics and to predict the amplitude of steady-state oscillations. The effect of design variables on longitudinal stability is evaluated and design guidelines are presented which insure reduction of the severity of this divergent dynamic behavior.

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