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Stabilizing effect of flexibility in the wake of a flapping foil

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  11 September 2012

C. Marais
Affiliation:
Physique et Mécanique des Milieux Hétérogènes (PMMH) CNRS UMR7636, ESPCI ParisTech, UPMC (Paris 6), Univ. Paris Diderot (Paris 7), 10, rue Vauquelin, F-75005 Paris, France
B. Thiria
Affiliation:
Physique et Mécanique des Milieux Hétérogènes (PMMH) CNRS UMR7636, ESPCI ParisTech, UPMC (Paris 6), Univ. Paris Diderot (Paris 7), 10, rue Vauquelin, F-75005 Paris, France
J. E. Wesfreid
Affiliation:
Physique et Mécanique des Milieux Hétérogènes (PMMH) CNRS UMR7636, ESPCI ParisTech, UPMC (Paris 6), Univ. Paris Diderot (Paris 7), 10, rue Vauquelin, F-75005 Paris, France
R. Godoy-Diana*
Affiliation:
Physique et Mécanique des Milieux Hétérogènes (PMMH) CNRS UMR7636, ESPCI ParisTech, UPMC (Paris 6), Univ. Paris Diderot (Paris 7), 10, rue Vauquelin, F-75005 Paris, France
*
Email address for correspondence: ramiro@pmmh.espci.fr

Abstract

The wake of a flexible foil undergoing pitching oscillations in a low-speed hydrodynamic tunnel is used to examine the effect of chordwise foil flexibility in the dynamical features of flapping-based propulsion. We compare the regime transitions in the wake with respect to the case of a rigid foil and show that foil flexibility inhibits the symmetry breaking of the reverse Bénard–von Kármán wake reported in the literature. A momentum balance calculation shows the average thrust to be up to three times greater for the flexible foil than for the rigid foil. We explain both of these observations by analysing the vortex dynamics in the very near wake.

Type
Papers
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2012

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