[2019-Vol.16-Issue 2]Numerical Simulation of Flapping Wing MAVs in V-formation
Time: 2019-05-17 16:40  Click:205

Journal of Bionic Engineering

March 2019, Volume 16, Issue 2, pp 264–280| Cite as

Wee-Beng Tay,Kishen Raj Murugaya,Woei-Leong Chan,Boo-Cheong Khoo

1.Temasek LaboratoriesNational University of SingaporeSingaporeRepublic of Singapore

2.Department of Mechanical EngineeringNational University of SingaporeSingaporeRepublic of Singapore


The purpose of this research is to understand the aerodynamics of Flapping wing Micro Aerial Vehicles (FMAVs) flying in V-formation and how V-formation can improve the endurance of FMAVs. We tested FMAVs with two types of flapping kinematics: (1) idealized sinusoidal flapping/pitching motion, (2) actual FMAV wing deformation capture. Using the design of experiment methodology, together with an immersed boundary method numerical solver, we investigate the effects of phase angle and x, y, z separation between the wings on the FMAVs’ performance. Results show that it is possible to obtain an overall thrust and lift improvement of up to 25% and 14% respectively, or a reduction of both 19%, compared to the single wing configuration. Lastly, for certain cases, we extend another row, leading to a total of five wings. Results show that in general, the additional thrust or lift experienced by the second row of wings is also experienced by the third row of wings. Hence, this may apply to subsequent rows too.


flapping wing V-formation immersed boundary methods MAV design of experiment 

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