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Dynamic Motion of Appendages/ Flippers of Marine Mammals: Basis for New Concepts of Control Surfaces, Hydrofoils and Wings During Extreme Maneuvers
Navy SBIR 2009.2 - Topic N092-143
NAVSEA - Mr. Dean Putnam -
Opens: May 18, 2009 - Closes: June 17, 2009

N092-143 TITLE: Dynamic Motion of Appendages/ Flippers of Marine Mammals: Basis for New Concepts of Control Surfaces, Hydrofoils and Wings During Extreme Maneuvers

TECHNOLOGY AREAS: Ground/Sea Vehicles


OBJECTIVE: The overall objective of this investigation is to explore new concepts that can lead to fundamental modifications of Naval submarines, submersibles and surface vessels and their control surfaces (e.g hulls, rudders and planes)

DESCRIPTION: Design of new control surfaces, hydrofoils, and planes for steady performance, highly unsteady maneuvers, and exposure to incident gusts and turbulence can benefit from an in-depth understanding of the quantitative, unsteady flow structure associated with appendages, flippers, and fins of highly evolved marine mammals and fish. The highly unsteady motion of distinctive plan forms of marine mammal appendages/flippers, in conjunction with surface modifications such as leading-edge protuberances, should provide time shifting of the unsteady onset of flow separation and vortex formation at high angle of attack, such that the loading on these configurations is optimized to allow severe maneuvers. These physical concepts can be extended to Naval submersible/surface vehicle configurations such as control surfaces/hydrofoils/planes undergoing severe maneuvers. Furthermore, such concepts may allow control surfaces/hydrofoils/planes to withstand large amplitude gusts and turbulence. Newly-developed techniques of laser-based, quantitative space-time imaging can define new types of three-dimensional flow patterns, in conjunction with loading characteristics.

This project will: (a) classify various types of appendages, flippers, and fins primarily of mammals, but also of fish; (b) subject generic configurations to basic types of unsteady motion; (c) quantitatively determine new types of complex flow patterns in relation to steady and unsteady loading; (d) relate findings to projected Navy submersible/surface vehicle configurations.

PHASE I: Study and formulate geometrical modifications of a generic control surfaces/hydrofoil/ planes that will yield favorable relationships between highly unsteady motion, flow structure, and loading. Implement an experimental or experimental-numerical approach that provides quantitative, instantaneous definition of the unsteady flow structure in relation to the loading. Develop a plan for subsequent phases of the program, including cost, schedule, and required support.

PHASE II: Investigate the effects of mode of motion (plunging, pitching and their combination), dimensionless amplitude, and reduced frequency, for different geometrical modifications of a generic control surface/hydrofoil/ wing. Such modifications should be grounded in the state of knowledge of mammals and fish undergoing unsteady maneuvers. Finalize the optimal geometrical modification and make recommendations for the design for Phase III.

PHASE III: Identify a full-scale configuration in the category of ground and sea vehicles fabricate and implement the optimal geometrical modification defined in Phase II, and perform full-scale testing. Transition the technology to one of the foregoing categories, and identify applications in the private/commercial sector. Transition the technology to the assigned program office.

PRIVATE SECTOR COMMERCIAL POTENTIAL/DUAL-USE APPLICATIONS: Commercial/industrial firms concerned with the performance and durability of the wings of large-scale aircraft and small-scale aircraft, including micro-aerial vehicles, blades of wind turbines, and compressor and fan blades in rotating machinery could exploit the results of this program. All of these organizations are concerned with unsteadiness associated with motion of the body, as well as unsteadiness associated with incident gusts and turbulence.

1. Lauder, G.V. and Madden, P.G.A. 2007 Fish locomotion: kinematics and hydrodynamics of flexible foil-like fins Experiments in Fluids Vol. 43: 641653.

2. Fish, F.E. and Lauder, G.V. 2006 Passive and active control by swimming fishes and mammals Annual Review of Fluid Mechanics Vol. 38: 193-224.

3. Yaniktepe, B. and Rockwell, D. 2004 Flow Structure on a Delta Wing of Low Sweep Angle AIAA Journal, Vol. 42, No. 3, , pp. 513-523.

4. Rockwell, D. 2000 Imaging of unsteady separated flows: global interpretation with particle image velocimetry Experiments in Fluids Vol. 29 No.7, pp. S255-27.

KEYWORDS: Maneuver; unsteady; mammals; lift; drag; vortices, control surfaces;

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