Correlation between vortex structures and unsteady loads for flapping motion in hover

Correlation between vortex structures and unsteady loads for flapping motion in hover During the past decade, efforts were made to develop a new generation of unmanned aircrafts, qualified as Micro-Air Vehicles. The particularity of these systems resides in their maximum dimension limited to 15 cm, which, in terms of aerodynamics, corresponds to low Reynolds number flows (Re ≈ 102 to 104). At low Reynolds number, the concept of flapping wings seems to be an interesting alternative to the conventional fixed and rotary wings. Despite the fact that this concept may lead to enhanced lift forces and efficiency ratios, it allows hovering coupled with a low-noise generation. Previous studies (Dickinson et al. in Science 284:1954–1960, 1999) revealed that the flow engendered by flapping wings is highly vortical and unsteady, inducing significant temporal variations of the loads experienced by the airfoil. In order to enhance the aerodynamic performance of such flapping wings, it is essential to give further insight into the loads generating mechanisms by correlating the spatial and temporal evolution of the vortical structures together with the time-dependent lift and drag. In this paper, Time Resolved Particle Image Velocimetry is used as a basis to evaluate both unsteady forces and vortical structures generated by an airfoil undergoing complex motion (i.e. asymmetric flapping flight), through the momentum equation approach and a multidimensional wavelet-like vortex parameterization method, respectively. The momentum equation approach relies on the integration of flow variables inside and around a control volume surrounding the airfoil (Noca et al. in J Fluids Struct 11:345–350, 1997; Unal et al. in J Fluids Struct 11:965–971, 1997). Besides the direct link performed between the flow behavior and the force mechanisms, the load characterization is here non-intrusive and specifically convenient for flapping flight studies thanks to its low Reynolds flows’ sensitivity and adaptability to moving bodies. Results are supported by a vortex parameterization which evaluates the circulation of the multiple vortices generated in such complex flows. The temporal evolution of the loads matches the flow behavior and hence reveals the preponderant inertial force component and that due to vortical structures. Experiments in Fluids Springer Journals

Correlation between vortex structures and unsteady loads for flapping motion in hover

Loading next page...
Copyright © 2009 by Springer-Verlag
Engineering; Engineering Thermodynamics, Heat and Mass Transfer; Fluid- and Aerodynamics; Engineering Fluid Dynamics
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site


You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.

DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 12 million articles from more than
10,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Unlimited reading

Read as many articles as you need. Full articles with original layout, charts and figures. Read online, from anywhere.

Stay up to date

Keep up with your field with Personalized Recommendations and Follow Journals to get automatic updates.

Organize your research

It’s easy to organize your research with our built-in tools.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

Monthly Plan

  • Read unlimited articles
  • Personalized recommendations
  • No expiration
  • Print 20 pages per month
  • 20% off on PDF purchases
  • Organize your research
  • Get updates on your journals and topic searches


Start Free Trial

14-day Free Trial

Best Deal — 39% off

Annual Plan

  • All the features of the Professional Plan, but for 39% off!
  • Billed annually
  • No expiration
  • For the normal price of 10 articles elsewhere, you get one full year of unlimited access to articles.



billed annually
Start Free Trial

14-day Free Trial