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Radial Flow Effects On A Retreating Rotor Blade

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Technical Report

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Georgia Tech Research Corporation Atlanta United States

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This work studies the effects of radial flow on the aerodynamic phenomena occurring on a retreating blade with a focus on dynamic stall and reverse flow as applied to a helicopter rotor in forward flight and a wind turbine operating at a yaw angle. While great progress has been made in understanding the phenomenon of two-dimensional dynamic stall, the effect of rotation on the dynamic stall event is not well understood. Experiments were conducted on a rigid two bladed teetering rotor at high advance ratios in a low speed wind tunnel. Particle image velocimetry PIV measurements were used to quantify the flow field at several azimuthal angles on the rotating blade during the dynamic stall event. The effect of predominant centrifugal forces induced radial velocity on the dynamic stall event was studied in detail. Further investigation of the radial flow field suggested that the mean radial velocity attenuated on moving outboard due to an apparent shear layer instability and it was demonstrated to be of first order importance in the flow field. These radial flow results prompted an exploration of the flow over a rotating disk to establish similarities of the radial flow over rotating blade in separated flow to that over a rotating disk in separated flow. While a greater part of this work focused on aspects of dynamic stall on the retreating blade, the final parts focus on the exotic flow regime of reverse flow characterized by flow from the trailing edge to the leading edge of the blade. Aerodynamic loads measurement and surface flow visualization via tufts are used to first quantify the behavior of astatic yawed blade in reverse flow. PIV measurements are then used on a static yawed blade and a rotating blade in reverse flow conditions to ascertain the effects of rotation on reverse flow.

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