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Effect of Clap-fling in an Insect-like Tailless Flapping-wing Micro Air Vehicle

Hoang Vu Phan, Hoon Cheol Park, Sue Yeon Park


We report recent research progress in developing a tailless flapping-wing micro air vehicle (FW-MAV) by mimicking the flight of a beetle, Allomyrina Dichotoma. The flapping-wing mechanism was improved to create large flapping wing motions up to 190 degrees by a combination of the four-bar linkage and the pulley-string mechanism. It was able to generate a thrust of 10 to 15 grams while flapping the wings at a flapping frequency of 18 to 22 Hz with a wing area of 17cm2. The measured thrust was about 35-42% larger than the estimated thrust based on the unsteady blade element theory (UBET). The clap-flings at the end of upstrokes and downstrokes were the main source of enhancement in the thrust. Due to the increased thrust, the FWMAV was able to fly by remote control with two sets of fixed stabilizers installed at the top and bottom.

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