Unsteady aerodynamics of flapping flight - A fluid-structure interaction study of fore-hind wing phase difference

Mohammad Rasidi Mohammad Rasani, A. Shamsudeen, M. N. Sulaiman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Flights of dragonflies, various insects and birds have been a subject of active research that may offer insight towards enhanced aerodynamic performance at low Reynolds numbers. To that end, we mimick the flapping biomechanics of a dragonfly by two thin flat airfoils plunging in tandem with each other. In the present study, we aim to investigate the effect of difference in flapping phase between fore and hind wings towards their aerodynamic performances. We computationally simulate incompressible, viscous, laminar flow around two thin flat airfoils that are purely plunging, at a Strouhal number of 0.25 and Reynolds number of 6500, using a flow solver in an Arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian framework. Kinematics of both fore and hind wing flapping followed a similar sinusoidal function but with relative phase angle difference to each other, that were varied between -50° to +50° including two cases were phase difference is 0° (i.e. in-phase fore-hind wing flapping) and +90° (i.e. fore wing lags hind wing by 90°). Numerical results indicate that maximum lift and drag forces for each fore and hind wings occur at phase angle of -40° and that power efficiency of tandem wings are better at phase angles when hind wing leads the fore wing, with maximum power efficiency occurring at a fore-hind wing phase difference of +30°. The complex fore-hind wing vortex interaction indicate likely benefit on the hind wing as it interacts with the fore wing at different phase angles.

Original languageEnglish
Article number012024
JournalIOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering
Volume160
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2016

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Fluid structure interaction
Aerodynamics
Airfoils
Reynolds number
Strouhal number
Biomechanics
Birds
Laminar flow
Drag
Kinematics
Vortex flow

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Engineering(all)

Cite this

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abstract = "Flights of dragonflies, various insects and birds have been a subject of active research that may offer insight towards enhanced aerodynamic performance at low Reynolds numbers. To that end, we mimick the flapping biomechanics of a dragonfly by two thin flat airfoils plunging in tandem with each other. In the present study, we aim to investigate the effect of difference in flapping phase between fore and hind wings towards their aerodynamic performances. We computationally simulate incompressible, viscous, laminar flow around two thin flat airfoils that are purely plunging, at a Strouhal number of 0.25 and Reynolds number of 6500, using a flow solver in an Arbitrary Lagrangian-Eulerian framework. Kinematics of both fore and hind wing flapping followed a similar sinusoidal function but with relative phase angle difference to each other, that were varied between -50° to +50° including two cases were phase difference is 0° (i.e. in-phase fore-hind wing flapping) and +90° (i.e. fore wing lags hind wing by 90°). Numerical results indicate that maximum lift and drag forces for each fore and hind wings occur at phase angle of -40° and that power efficiency of tandem wings are better at phase angles when hind wing leads the fore wing, with maximum power efficiency occurring at a fore-hind wing phase difference of +30°. The complex fore-hind wing vortex interaction indicate likely benefit on the hind wing as it interacts with the fore wing at different phase angles.",
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