Accession Number : ADA584203


Title :   Finite Element Analysis of a Highly Flexible Flapping Wing


Descriptive Note : Master's thesis


Corporate Author : AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH GRADUATE SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING AND MANAGEMENT


Personal Author(s) : Mason, Justin K


Full Text : http://www.dtic.mil/get-tr-doc/pdf?AD=ADA584203


Report Date : Mar 2013


Pagination or Media Count : 122


Abstract : Small unmanned aerial systems are being designed to emulate the flapping kinematics of insects and birds which show superior control in slow speed regimes compared to fixed wing or rotorcraft aircraft. The flight of flapping wing vehicles is characterized by aeroelastic effects. Most research has been dedicated towards understanding the aerodynamic side of the aeroelastic response with minimal effort spent towards validating the structural response. A finite element model of a wing from a commercial flapping wing vehicle was created to validate the structural response. Vacuum testing allowed the isolation of the inertial response for a direct comparison to the finite element model. Wing tip displacement amplitude was matched to within 8%. The membrane kinematics of the finite element model were similar to the vacuum test article but overall membrane deflections predicted by the finite element solver were less than observed deflections seen in the vacuum. This research shows that significant focus must be placed on validating the structural side of a flexible structure in order to correctly model the complete aeroelastic response.


Descriptors :   *FINITE ELEMENT ANALYSIS, *FLEXIBLE STRUCTURES, *WINGS, AERODYNAMICS, AEROELASTICITY, UNMANNED, VACUUM


Subject Categories : Aircraft
      Numerical Mathematics
      Structural Engineering and Building Technology


Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE