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Analytical Results on the Role of Flexibility in Flapping Propulsion

Title: Analytical Results on the Role of Flexibility in Flapping Propulsion.
Name(s): Moore, Nicholas, author
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Issuance: serial
Date Issued: 2014
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Wing or fin flexibility can dramatically affect the performance of flying and swimming animals. Both laboratory experiments and numerical simulations have been used to study these effects, but analytical results are notably lacking. Here, we develop small-amplitude theory to model a flapping wing that pitches passively due to a combination of wing compliance, inertia and fluid forces. Remarkably, we obtain a class of exact solutions describing the wing's emergent pitching motions, along with expressions for how thrust and efficiency are modified by compliance. The solutions recover a range of realistic behaviours and shed new light on how flexibility can aid performance, the importance of resonance, and the separate roles played by wing and fluid inertia. The simple robust estimates afforded by our theory may prove valuable even in situations where details of the flapping motion and wing geometry differ.
Identifier: FSU_migr_math_faculty_publications-0002 (IID), 10.1017/jfm.2014.533 (DOI)
Keywords: propulsion, swimming/flying, vortex shedding
Note: This is the author's accepted manuscript as accepted for publication. Minor changes may have occurred between this and the version of record, which may be found at:'>">
Citation: Moore, M. Nicholas J. (2014). Analytical results on the role of flexibility in flapping propulsion. Journal of Fluid Mechanics, 757, pp 599-612 doi:10.1017/jfm.2014.533
Subject(s): Mathematics
Physical sciences
Persistent Link to This Record:
Host Institution: FSU
Is Part of Series: Department of Mathematics Faculty Publications.
Is Part Of: Journal of Fluid Mechanics.
Issue: 757

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Moore, N. (2014). Analytical Results on the Role of Flexibility in Flapping Propulsion. Journal Of Fluid Mechanics. Retrieved from