Membrane Wing Gust Response
During the last years there is a growing interest in the implementation of mem-
brane wings in micro air vehicles (MAVs), mainly due to their light weight and passive
shape adaptation to ight conditions. Since MAVs y with relatively low velocity, the
e_ect of atmospheric turbulence (gusts) on MAV performance can be considerable.
One of the most desirable characteristics of MAV wings is fast adaptation to gusts,
in a manner that preserves the aerodynamic characteristics even at high induced an-
gles of attack. While membrane wings are already used in MAV applications, the
aeroelastic response of a exible membrane wing to gusts has not yet been studied.
The main objective of the research is to study the dynamic response of an elastic
membrane to atmospheric gusts. This will be done by solving analytically and nu-
merically the nonlinear equations of motion of a membrane wing to various external
excitations and initial conditions, and by studying the e_ects of the membrane pa-
rameters (such as elasticity, inertial properties, and pretension), and ow conditions.
The goal of the parametric study is to gain greater physical understanding on the
.shape adaptation and resulting aerodynamic response of the membrane wing