Morphing wing with compliant aileron and slat for unmanned aerial vehicles

Alexander Menshchikov, Andrey Somov

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    5 Citations (Scopus)


    Aircraft perform flight in multiple regimes with different speeds, Angles of Attack (AoA), sideslip angles, and at different altitudes. Designers usually choose the airfoil having the best performance for the cruise mode only or being able to stay suboptimal for all the flight regimes. It leads to a reduction in the maximum lift-to-drag ratio for certain regimes, as well as deterioration in the overall performance. That is why the adaptive wing with its ability to stay optimal for any of the flight regimes is a promising technology which could significantly improve the performance and maneuverability of the aircraft during the flight. In this work, we assess the performance of the wing with the traditional and adaptive mechanization of the flap and slat using computer simulation followed by the experiments in the wind tunnel environment. This work also provides the design of an adaptive wing with an adaptive flap and slat. All the investigations were performed for the two-dimensional airfoil under different Reynolds numbers and AoA. This paper demonstrates that an adaptive wing improves the lift-to-drag ratio and maneuverability of the aircraft for different flight regimes. The application of the adaptive wing mechanization could improve the lift-to-drag ratio by 20%-30% for certain regimes, thereby improving the range and time of operation.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number037105
    JournalPhysics of Fluids
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2019


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