Aircraft and Helicopter Aerodynamics

Model of BLUECOPTER configuration mounted in the text section of wind tunnel A.

Motivation and Objectives

The long-term research agenda is based on the continues improvement of flow simulation and analysis capabilities in the context of aircraft and helicopter performance enhancement and drag reduction. Specific research activities are dedicated to the reliable prediction of flow separation onset and progression in the context of vortex dominated flow and control of leading edge vortex systems, development of a novel ROM framework for aeroelastic analysis, helicopter drag reduction of rotor hub and engine intake by shape optimization and flow control, development of propeller performance and optimization tool chain with respect to electrically driven flight vehicles and fluid-structure interaction of membrane type lifting surfaces applied to wind turbine rotors.

Approach to Solution

The investigations have been performed using both wind tunnel experiments and state-of-the art numerical simulations. In-house codes are continously further elaborated in the context of aeroelasticity analysis with respect to time accurate fully coupled simulations as well as the application of novel neuro-fuzzy based reduced order models. Commercial CFD codes are applied to flow control problems and helicopter aerodynamics addressing unsteady loads analysis and aeroacoustics.

Test bed of an elasto-flexible membrane wing configuration mounted in the test section of wind tunnel A