Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Numerical analyses of passive and active flow control over a micro air vehicle with an optimized airfoil
by Gada, Komal Kantilal, M.S., California State University, Long Beach, 2015, 57; 1606060
Abstract (Summary)

Numerical investigations of an optimized thin airfoil with a passive and an active flow control device (riblets and rotary cylinder) have been performed. The objectives of the thesis were to investigate the tip vortices reduction using riblets and decrease in flow separation, using a rotary cylinder for improved lift-to-drag ratio. The investigations has application potentials in improving performances of Micro Air Vehicles (MAVs). The airfoil has a chord length of 19.66 cm and a span of 25 cm. with the free stream mean velocity was set at 20 m/s. The Reynolds number was calculated as 3 × 10 4. Investigations with base model of the airfoil have shown flow separation at approximately 85% chord length at an angle of attack of 17 degrees. For investigation using passive flow control device, i.e. riblets, investigations were performed for different radial sizes but at a fixed location. It was found that with 1 mm radial size riblet, the tip vortices were reduced by approximately 95%, as compared to the baseline model. Although negligible lift-to-drag improvement was seen, a faster dissipation rate in turbulent kinetic energy was observed. Furthermore, investigations were carried out using the active flow control device. The rotary cylinder with a 0.51 cm in diameter was placed slightly downstream of the location of flow separation, i.e. at x/c = 0.848. Investigations were performed at different cylinder's rotations, corresponding to different tangential velocities of being higher than, equal to and less than the free stream mean velocity. Results have shown approximately 10% improvement in lift to drag ratio when the tangential velocity is near the free stream mean velocity. Further investigation may include usage of the riblets and the rotary cylinder combined, to increase the stability as well as the lift-to-drag ratio of the MAVs.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Rahai, Hamid
Commitee: Shankar, Praveen, Taherian, Shahab
School: California State University, Long Beach
Department: Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 55/03M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Aerospace engineering, Mechanical engineering
Keywords: Micro air vehicle, Optimised airfoil, Riblets, Rotating cylinder
Publication Number: 1606060
ISBN: 9781339362205
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