Abstract

Various concepts have been introduced in the literature to recreate avian wings’ flapping motion since natural flight has advantages for certain flight regimes, such as more maneuverability, efficiency, and agility, over fixed-wing aircraft. Similarly, the so-called solid-state ornithopter is designed to achieve a flapping wing motion; however, also achieves to use the minimum number of components. It utilizes an active layer of piezoelectric actuators over a composite substrate, and the flapping motion is generated through the induced strain from the piezoelectric actuators. Previously, a simplified rectangular plate-like design was studied for the variations of important geometric parameters. In this paper, more complicated and realistic geometries are investigated. The flapping performance is studied using a structural finite element model represented by parameters related to the wing’s motion such as tip displacement, bending curvature, and lateral slope. Furthermore, a set of experiments are conducted to verify the simulation results. During the experiments, the wing’s three-dimensional motion is recorded via a camera based motion-capture system. After that, the acquired data are processed using mathematical models to obtain the displacements, and parameters related to curvature, twist, and slope.

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