Aerodynamic Investigation of Inverted Gull-Wing Aircraft verses Conventional Wing Aircraft with Application of Computational Fluid Dynamics

by David Paul Pittari

Institution: Central Connecticut State University
Department: Department of Engineering Technology
Year: 2015
Keywords: Airplanes – Wings.; Aerodynamics.; Computational fluid dynamics.
Record ID: 2059520
Full text PDF: http://content.library.ccsu.edu/u?/ccsutheses,2068


The objective of this study was to verify if inverted gull-wing configured aircraft have increased aerodynamic performance characteristics compared with planar wings of the same aspect ratio. The conventional theory is that lift and drag values are dependent on the projected area of a wing, however the hypothesis is that an inverted gull-wing will generate lift and drag values of a larger aspect ratio wing than what the conventional calculated aspect ratio assumes. The method of experimentation examined three wing configurations based on the design of a classic inverted gull-wing fighter aircraft: the original inverted gull-wing with anhedral and dihedral, a zero dihedral wing, and a dihedral wing, all with the same wing span, airfoil profiles, and taper. Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) software was utilized in this study to analyze these three wing configurations in two flight conditions: Mach 0.3 to 0.7 at level flight and Mach 0.5 from 14o to 20o Angle of Attack. Values of lift, drag, turbulent kinetic energy, wall shear stress, pressure, and Mach number were generated from this CFD software and compared between each configuration. The results of this study showed a noticeable increase of aerodynamic performance for the inverted gull-wing verses the other two configurations. However this is limited by the critical Mach number unique to each wing. Critical Mach number could be controlled by the use of laminar airfoil profiles and swept wing geometry, thus validating the inverted gull-wing as a prudent efficient design in commercial and military aerospace applications. "Submitted in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Engineering Technology."; Thesis advisor: Alfred Gates.; M.S.,Central Connecticut State University,,2015.;