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Evolutionary shape optimisation enhances the lift coefficient of rotating wing geometries

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 April 2019

Shantanu S. Bhat
Affiliation:
Fluids Laboratory for Aeronautical and Industrial Research (FLAIR), Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC 3800, Australia
Jisheng Zhao
Affiliation:
Fluids Laboratory for Aeronautical and Industrial Research (FLAIR), Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC 3800, Australia
John Sheridan
Affiliation:
Fluids Laboratory for Aeronautical and Industrial Research (FLAIR), Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC 3800, Australia
Kerry Hourigan
Affiliation:
Fluids Laboratory for Aeronautical and Industrial Research (FLAIR), Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC 3800, Australia
Mark C. Thompson
Affiliation:
Fluids Laboratory for Aeronautical and Industrial Research (FLAIR), Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Monash University, Melbourne, VIC 3800, Australia
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

Wing shape is an important factor affecting the aerodynamic performance of wings of monocopters and flapping-wing micro air vehicles. Here, an evolutionary structural optimisation method is adapted to optimise wing shape to enhance the lift force due to aerodynamic pressure on the wing surfaces. The pressure distribution is observed to vary with the span-based Reynolds number over a range covering most insects and samaras. Accordingly, the optimised wing shapes derived using this evolutionary approach are shown to adjust with Reynolds number. Moreover, these optimised shapes exhibit significantly higher lift coefficients ( ${\sim}50\,\%$ ) than the initial rectangular wing forebear. Interestingly, the optimised shapes are found to have a large area outboard, broadly in line with the features of high-lift forewings of multi-winged insects. According to specific aerodynamic performance requirements, this novel method could be employed in the optimisation of improved wing shapes for micro air vehicles.

Type
JFM Papers
Copyright
© 2019 Cambridge University Press 

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