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Aerospace 2016, 3(1), 4; doi:10.3390/aerospace3010004

The Effect of the Phase Angle between the Forewing and Hindwing on the Aerodynamic Performance of a Dragonfly-Type Ornithopter

1
Department of Mechano-Informatics, Graduate School of Information Science and Technology, The University of Tokyo, 7-3-1 Hongo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8654, Japan
2
Reconfigurable Robotics Laboratory, Institute of Mechanical Engineering, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Lausanne (EPFL) MED 11236 Station 9, Lausanne CH-1015, Switzerland
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Sutthiphong Srigrarom
Received: 4 November 2015 / Revised: 28 December 2015 / Accepted: 19 January 2016 / Published: 25 January 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Flapping Wings)
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Abstract

Dragonflies achieve agile maneuverability by flapping four wings independently. Different phase angles between the flapping forewing and hindwing have been observed during various flight modes. The aerodynamic performance depends on phase angle control, as exemplified by an artificial flying ornithopter. Here, we present a dragonfly-like ornithopter whose phase angle was designed to vary according to the phase lag between the slider-cranks of the forewing and hindwing. Two microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) differential pressure sensors were attached to the center of both forewing and hindwing to evaluate the aerodynamic performance during flapping motions when the phase angle was changed. By varying the phase angle in both the tethered condition and free-flight, the performance of the forewing remained approximately constant, whereas that of the hindwing exhibited obvious variations; the maximum average value was two-fold higher than the minimum. The experimental results suggest that simple phase angle changes enable a flying ornithopter to control flight force balance without complex changes in the wing kinematics. View Full-Text
Keywords: dragonfly; ornithopter; phase angle; MEMS; differential pressure sensor dragonfly; ornithopter; phase angle; MEMS; differential pressure sensor
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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. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Takahashi, H.; Concordel, A.; Paik, J.; Shimoyama, I. The Effect of the Phase Angle between the Forewing and Hindwing on the Aerodynamic Performance of a Dragonfly-Type Ornithopter. Aerospace 2016, 3, 4.

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