Table of Contents
Advances in Aerospace Engineering
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 504049, 7 pages
Research Article

A Computational Investigation of Unsteady Aerodynamics of Insect-Inspired Fixed Wing Micro Aerial Vehicle’s 2D Airfoil

Department of Aeronautical Engineering, Visvesvaraya Technological University, Belgaum, Karnataka 590018, India

Received 24 January 2014; Revised 16 May 2014; Accepted 19 May 2014; Published 17 June 2014

Academic Editor: Hamid M. Lankarani

Copyright © 2014 Somashekar V. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


A Micro air vehicle (MAV) is defined as class of unmanned air vehicle (UAV) having a linear dimension of less than 15 centimeters and a mass of less than 100 grams with flight speeds of 6 to 12 meters per second. MAVs fall within a Reynolds number (Re) range of 50,000 and 120,000, in which many causes of unsteady aerodynamic effects are not fully understood. The research field of low Reynolds number aerodynamics is currently an active one, with many defence organizations, universities, and corporations working towards a better understanding of the physical processes of this aerodynamic regime. In the present work, it is proposed to study the unsteady aerodynamic analysis of 2D airfoil using CFD software and Xfoil panel code method. The various steps involved in this work are geometric modelling using CATIA V5R17, meshing using ICEM CFD, and solution and postprocessing through FLUENT. The finite control volume analysis and Xfoil panel code method has been carried out to predict aerodynamic characteristics such as lift coefficients, drag coefficients, moment coefficients, pressure coefficients, and flow visualization. The lift and drag coefficients were compared for all the simulations with experimental results. It was observed that for the 2D airfoil, lift and drag both compared well for the midrange angle of attack from −10 to 15 degree AOA.