Formation Parameter Applied to Flat Plates and Insects

Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date


Publication Source

46th AIAA Aerospace Sciences Meeting and Exhibit


The formation parameter concept has been applied to insects using simplifying assumptions, and subsequently used to describe the flow around a flat plate with a sinusoidal velocity profile. 1) The formation parameter was applied to 49 species of insect and was found to yield a formation number of roughly 4 when normalized by span instead of chord, indicating a preference for the spanwise direction in the importance of vortex formation in insects. Conclusions drawn from the parametric study require further investigation. 2) A DPIV study was conducted on the formation parameter for a stainless steel flat plate with a sinusoidal velocity profile. The formation number was found to be in the range of 0.5 to 1 for a flapping Reynolds number of 2300. Physical specifications of the flat plate were an aspect ratio of 6 and thickness to chord ratio of 3.125%.




Permission documentation is on file.


American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics

Place of Publication

Reno, NV