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Low Reynolds Number Flow Dynamics of a Thin Airfoil with an Actuated Leading Edge

Summary: Low Reynolds Number Flow Dynamics of a Thin
Airfoil with an Actuated Leading Edge
Kevin J. Drost
Heather Johnson
Sourabh V. Apte
James A. Liburdy
School of Mechanical Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331
Use of oscillatory actuation of the leading edge of a thin, flat, rigid airfoil, as a poten-
tial mechanism for control or improved performance of a micro-air vehicle (MAV), was
investigated by performing direct numerical simulations and experimental measurements
at low Reynolds numbers. The leading edge of the airfoil is hinged at 30% of the chord
length allowing dynamic variations in the effective angle of attack through specified oscilla-
tions (flapping). This leading edge actuation results in transient variations in the effective
camber and angle of attack that can be used to alleviate the strength of the leading edge
vortex at high angles of attack. A fictitious-domain based finite volume approach [Apte et
al., JCP 2009] was used to compute the moving boundary problem on a fixed background
mesh. The flow solver is three-dimensional, parallel, second-order accurate, capable of
using structured or arbitrarily shaped unstructured meshes and has been validated for a
range of canonical test cases including flow over cylinder and sphere at different Reynolds
numbers, and flow-induced by inline oscillation of a cylinder, as well as flow over a plunging


Source: Apte, Sourabh V. - School of Mechanical, Industrial, and Manufacturing Engineering, Oregon State University


Collections: Engineering