Lift and Thrust Characteristics of Flapping Wing Aerial Vehicle with Pitching and Flapping Motion


Development of flapping wing aerial vehicle (FWAV) has been of interest in the aerospace community with ongoing research into unsteady and low Reynolds number aerodynamics based on the vortex lattice method. Most of the previous research has been about pitching and plunging motion of the FWAV. With pitching and flapping motion of FMAV, people usually study it by experiment, and little work has been done by numerical calculation. In this paper, three-dimension unsteady vortex lattice method is applied to study the lift and thrust of FWAV with pitching and flapping motion. The results show that: 1) Lift is mainly produced during down stroke, however, thrust is produced during both down stroke and upstroke. The lift and thrust produced during down stroke are much more than that produced during upstroke. 2) Lift and thrust increase with the increase of flapping frequency; 3) Thrust increases with the increase of flapping amplitude, but the lift decreases with the increase of flapping amplitude; 4) Lift and thrust increase with the increase of mean pitching angle, but the effect on lift is much more than on thrust. This research is helpful to understand the flight mechanism of birds, thus improving the design of FWAV simulating birds.

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Yu, C. , Kim, D. and Zhao, Y. (2014) Lift and Thrust Characteristics of Flapping Wing Aerial Vehicle with Pitching and Flapping Motion. Journal of Applied Mathematics and Physics, 2, 1031-1038. doi: 10.4236/jamp.2014.212117.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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