Towards locust-inspired gliding wing prototypes for micro aerial vehicle applications

Isakhani, Hamid, Xiong, Caihua, Chen, Wenbin and Yue, Shigang (2021) Towards locust-inspired gliding wing prototypes for micro aerial vehicle applications. Royal Society Open Science, 8 (6). p. 202253. ISSN 2054-5703

Full content URL: https://doi.org/10.1098/rsos.202253

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Towards locust-inspired gliding wing prototypes for micro aerial vehicle applications
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Abstract

In aviation, gliding is the most economical mode of flight explicitly appreciated by natural fliers. They achieve it by high-performance wing structures evolved over millions of years in nature. Among other prehistoric beings, locust (Schistocerca gregaria) is a perfect example of such natural glider capable of endured transatlantic flights that could inspire a practical solution to achieve similar capabilities on micro aerial vehicles. This study investigates the effects of haemolymph on the flexibility of several flying insect wings further showcasing the superior structural performance of locusts.
However, biomimicry of such aerodynamic and structural properties is hindered by the limitations of modern as well as conventional fabrication technologies in terms of availability and precision, respectively. Therefore, here we adopt finite element analysis (FEA) to investigate the manufacturing-worthiness of a 3D digitally reconstructed locust tandem wing, and propose novel combinations of economical and readily-available manufacturing methods to develop the model into prototypes that are structurally similar to their counterparts in nature while maintaining the optimum gliding ratio previously obtained in the aerodynamic simulations. Latter is evaluated in the future study and the former is assessed here via an experimental analysis of the flexural stiffness and maximum deformation rate.
Ultimately, a comparative study of the mechanical properties reveals the feasibility of each prototype for gliding micro aerial vehicle applications.

Keywords:bioinspired gliding wing prototypes, finite element analysis, flexural stiffness, additive manufacturing, vacuum thermoforming
Subjects:H Engineering > H141 Fluid Mechanics
G Mathematical and Computer Sciences > G400 Computer Science
H Engineering > H440 Aerodynamics
H Engineering > H130 Computer-Aided Engineering
H Engineering > H410 Aeronautical Engineering
Divisions:College of Science > School of Computer Science
ID Code:47017
Deposited On:08 Nov 2021 12:41

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