Effects of the Propeller Advance Ratio on Delta Wing UAV Leading Edge Vortex
Delta wing is a triangular-shaped platform that can be applied into the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or drone applications. However, the flow above the delta wing is governed by complex leading-edge vortex structures which result in complicated aerodynamics behaviour. At higher angles of attack, the vortex burst can take place when the swirling flow is unable to sustain the adverse pressure gradient. More studies are needed to understand these vortex phenomena. This paper addresses an experimental study of active flow control called propeller on a generic 55° swept angle sharp-edged delta wing model. In this experiment, a propeller was placed at two different locations. The first location was at the apex of the wing while the second position was at the rear of the wing. The experiments were conducted in a 1.5 × 2.0 m2 closed-loop wind tunnel facility at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia. The freestream velocities were set at 20 m/s and 25 m/s. The research consisted of an intensive surface pressure measurement above the wing surface to investigate the effects of rotating propeller towards the leading-edge vortex. The experiments were divided into four configurations. The clean wing configuration was performed without the propeller and followed by pusher-propeller configuration using 10-inch 9-inch propellers. The final configuration was the tractor-propeller with a 10-inch propeller. The results emphasise the influences of the propeller size and its location corresponding to vortex properties above the delta-winged UAV model. The findings had indicated that the vortex peak is increased when the propeller is installed for both pusher and tractor configurations. The results also indicate that the pressure coefficient is increased when the propeller advance ratio increases.
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