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Piezo-Polymer-Composite Unimorph Actuators for Active Cancellation of Flow Instabilities Across Airfoils

Haller, Daniel; Pätzold, A.; Losse, N.; Neiss, S.; Peltzer, Inken; Nitsche, W.; King, Rudibert; Woias, P.

This article presents a smart device for active cancellation of flow instabilities. An array of two piezo unimorph actuators fabricated in piezo-polymer-composite technology is combined with a thin silicone membrane to mimic a movable wall with a closed surface. By locally displacing the thin membrane, a surface wave is generated that interferes with naturally occurring flow instabilities within the boundary layer of an airfoil. Using flow sensors and an intelligent control enables a destructive interference and therefore, an attenuation of natural flow instabilities. This leads to a delay of transition. The boundary layer remains laminar which means drag is reduced. Within the next pages, the setup of the device with actuators, membrane, sensors, and control is introduced. The main focus of this article is on actuator design, modeling, and implementation for wind tunnel experiments. Results of actuator characterization are presented. The non-linear behavior of the piezoactuator (harmonic distortions and impact of high electric fields) is investigated in detail. This study concludes with the results obtained in wind tunnel experiments which prove the functionality of the presented approach. A maximal attenuation of natural occurring flow instabilities of 80% is achieved.
Published in: Journal of Intelligent Material Systems and Structures, 10.1177/1045389X10395794, SAGE Publications
  • Dieser Beitrag ist mit Zustimmung des Rechteinhabers aufgrund einer (DFG geförderten) Allianz- bzw. Nationallizenz frei zugänglich.
  • This publication is with permission of the rights owner freely accessible due to an Alliance licence and a national licence (funded by the DFG, German Research Foundation) respectively.