Course Title: Advanced Aircraft Structural Analysis

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Advanced Aircraft Structural Analysis

Credit Points: 12.00

Important Information:

Please note that this course may have compulsory in-person attendance requirements for some teaching activities.

To participate in any RMIT course in-person activities or assessment, you will need to comply with RMIT vaccination requirements which are applicable during the duration of the course. This RMIT requirement includes being vaccinated against COVID-19 or holding a valid medical exemption.

Please read this RMIT Enrolment Procedure as it has important information regarding COVID vaccination and your study at RMIT:

Please read the Student website for additional requirements of in-person attendance:

Please check your Canvas course shell closer to when the course starts to see if this course requires mandatory in-person attendance. The delivery method of the course might have to change quickly in response to changes in the local state/national directive regarding in-person course attendance.


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


115H Aerospace, Mechanical & Manufacturing Engineering


Sem 2 2016


City Campus


172H School of Engineering


Sem 2 2017,
Sem 2 2018,
Sem 2 2019,
Sem 1 2020,
Sem 1 2021,
Sem 1 2022

Course Coordinator: Prof. Adrian Orifici

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 6092

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 251.03.044

Course Coordinator Availability: by appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

This course aims to advance the skills of aerospace professional engineers in the area of aircraft structures, building upon the topics covered in typical aerospace (or equivalent) undergraduate engineering programs. You will be provided with an introduction to the design process of advanced aircraft structures followed by stress/strain analyses of thin-walled structures including non-linear deformation and failure theories for lightweight metallic and composite structures. In addition, you will study fatigue and fracture mechanics of aircraft structures. Furthermore, you will have an opportunity to gain professional experience in utilisation of computational stress analyses of lightweight structures using finite element method.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes of the Master of Engineering:

1. Needs, Context and Systems

  • Exposit legal, social, economic, ethical and environmental interests, values, requirements and expectations of key stakeholders
  • Identify and assess risks (including OH&S) as well as the economic, social and environmental impacts of engineering activities

2. Problem Solving and Design

  • Develop and operate within a hazard and risk framework appropriate to engineering activities

3. Analysis

  • Comprehend and apply advanced theory-based understanding of engineering fundamentals and specialist bodies of knowledge in the selected discipline area to predict the effect of engineering activities
  • Apply underpinning natural, physical and engineering sciences, mathematics, statistics, computer and information sciences.

4. Professional Practice

  • Understand the scope, principles, norms, accountabilities and bounds of contemporary engineering practice in the specific discipline
  • Display a personal sense of responsibility for your work

5. Research

  • Be aware of knowledge development and research directions within the engineering discipline

Course Learning Outcomes (CLOs)

On completion of this course you should be able to:

  1. Explain the design process of lightweight structures based on aircraft design requirements
  2. Implement advanced technical concepts, analyse and assess the structural behaviour of aircraft structures using analytical and numerical methods.
  3. Analyse fatigue/fracture behaviour of aerospace structures
  4. Determine mechanical properties of composite materials.  
  5. Develop and validate finite element models to investigate advanced structural analysis problems relevant to aerospace structures.

Overview of Learning Activities

Learning activities can include lectorials (combined lectures and tutorials) and assignments. 

Overview of Learning Resources

Course-related resources will be provided on the course Learning Management System (Canvas), which is accessed through myRMIT. This can include lecture material, tutorials, supplementary course notes, problem sheets and solutions, and references.

Overview of Assessment

This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment tasks 

Assessment Task 1: Assignment 1
Weighting 20%
This assessment task supports CLO 2

Assessment Task 2: Assignment 2
Weighting 30% 
This assessment supports CLO 5

Assessment Task 3: End-Semester Assessment 
Weighting 50% 
This assessment supports CLOs 1- 4