Investigation of the three-dimensional flow over a 40° swept wing

S Zhang, AJ Jaworski, JT Turner, NJ Wood

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Three-component laser Doppler anemometry (LDA) has been used to measure the complex flow distributions over the suction surface of a symmetrical 40°swept wing model at an angle of incidence of 9° and for the relatively low Reynolds number (based on the root chord) of 2·1 × 105. Emphasis was placed on the separation and reattachment of the boundary-layer flow, and the formation of vortical structures.

The experimental programme now described utilised a large wind tunnel and several advanced measurement techniques to produce an unusually detailed collection of results. Thus, data are presented here for the behaviour of the three-dimensional boundary layer developing on the suction surface at positions from 30% to 90% semi-span. These results show the spatial variations of the time-averaged mean and fluctuating velocity components in three orthogonal directions, including the distributions of the normal and shear stress levels. Further analysis has enabled the time-averaged vortical structures to be identified and compared with the results of surface flow visualisation.

Flow over a swept wing poses many challenges for the computational modeller. The underlying aim, here, therefore, was to produce a data archive for the validation of computer predictions. As will be shown, some of the experimental results have already been used in this way and the data base is available for use by other workers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)441-449
Number of pages9
JournalAeronautical Journal
Issue number1169
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2011
Externally publishedYes


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