Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
This research investigates the efficiency of a vane-based thrust vectoring system set in the wake of a propeller, supporting forward force at a minimum loss in net thrust. The vectoring system itself is placed in both a standalone propeller configuration and a propeller-in-wing configuration. Both static and wind-on force-based experiments are conducted at the University of Dayton Low Speed Wind Tunnel (UD-LSWT) with off-the-shelf R/C propellers. Sensitivity analysis determines both the effect of vane deflection angle on thrust vectoring and the effect of propeller placement with respect to the upper surface of the integrated wing on system performance. Static test results indicate notable improvement in vane performance when the vectoring design is placed in a wing. Thrust vectoring is achieved, along with subsequent changes in pitching moment, with incremental increases in vane deflection angle for two propeller pitch cases: 75° and 90°. Wind tunnel test results of the integrated propeller-in-wing system for the standard 90°-pitch orientation show successful thrust vectoring below the advance ratio of 0.3, which is practical for most relevant applications; the 75°-pitch orientation of the propeller-vane system observes thrust vectoring capabilities extending to an advance ratio of 0.7. Sensitivity analysis reveals that the overall efficiency of the propeller exposed to the flow freestream is greater than that of the propeller fully embedded in the mock wing though the embedded case features a better thrust vectoring capability.
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Culpepper, Grace G., "Propeller and Propeller-In-Wing Thrust Vectoring" (2021). Honors Theses. 311.