Nonlinear analysis of 2D flexible flapping wings

Mohammad H. Abedinnasab, Hassan Zohoor, Yong Jin Yoon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Natural flyers have flexible wings, which deform significantly under the combined inertial and aerodynamic forces. In this study, we focus on the role of chord wise flexibility in 2D pitch and plunge motions. We derive the exact nonlinear 2D equations of motion for a flexible flapping wing with flying support. In achieving the closed-form equations, we use the exact strain field concerning considerable elastic deformations. After numerically solving the novel equations, we validate them in simulations with highly deformable wings. By coupling the derived equations of motion with fluid flow, we study the aerodynamic performance of the geometrically nonlinear flexible flapping wing. Through numerical simulations, we see that a flexible wing generates much lower drag with increasing flexibility. While at angles of attack >50∘ more lift is generated by flexible wings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-310
Number of pages12
JournalNonlinear Dynamics
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - Jul 10 2015
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Ocean Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


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