1932

Abstract

In this review we describe the aerodynamic problems that must be addressed in order to design a successful small aerial vehicle. The effects of Reynolds number and aspect ratio (AR) on the design and performance of fixed-wing vehicles are described. The boundary-layer behavior on airfoils is especially important in the design of vehicles in this flight regime. The results of a number of experimental boundary-layer studies, including the influence of laminar separation bubbles, are discussed. Several examples of small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in this regime are described. Also, a brief survey of analytical models for oscillating and flapping-wing propulsion is presented. These range from the earliest examples where quasi-steady, attached flow is assumed, to those that account for the unsteady shed vortex wake as well as flow separation and aeroelastic behavior of a flapping wing. Experiments that complemented the analysis and led to the design of a successful ornithopter are also described.

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/content/journals/10.1146/annurev.fluid.35.101101.161102
2003-01-01
2024-04-22
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  • Article Type: Review Article
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