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11.

3 Airfoils
cfi-ground

Last update: 11-23-2009

preperation
objective
schedule

The student knows the different Terms related to airfoils and the Lift/Drag produced with them.
5min Introduction
Whiteboard
30min Development
training aids
dry erase markers
5min Conclusion
Part of an Airfoil

introduction
attention
motivation
overview

What does a wing, a rotor blade, a fan and a sail doe have in common?
Can you imagine other airfoils ?
It is important to understand the different Terms used to describe an airfoil. So everybody talks about the same stuff.
Different terms used on an airfoil
Different Airfoils
Lift/Drag on an Airfoil

development
1. Different terms used on an airfoil
draw a huge picture of an airfoil to describe all parts of it
Leading Edge
The most forward point of an airfoil
Trailing Edge
The most rearward point of an airfoil
chord Line
straight line connecting leading and trailing edge
Mean Camber Line
line in the middle of the airfoil
straight in a symetrical airfoil
center of Pressure
Imaginary point
all forces are considered to act there
on the chord line
plane of rotation
imaginary circular plane
outlined by rotor blade tips in the circle of rotation
feathering / feathering axis
axis used to rotate blades to change pitch angle
straight line between root of blade and tip
pitch angle
angle between chord line and
reference plane of the main rotor hub
or the plane of rotation
relative wind
wind moving past the airfoil
parallel and opposite to the flight path of airfoil
not affected by pitch angle
induced flow
is the mass of air forced down by the rotor action
the vertical component of relative wind ( flapping = 2nd vertical component)
horizontal airflow
speed of the blade
movement of the helicopter
wind speed and direction
angle of attack
angle between chord line and relative wind
determines the amount of lift produced

2. Different airfoils
draw a symetrical and an asymetrical airfoil on the board
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Lukas Kb

11.3 Airfoils
cfi-ground

Last update: 11-23-2009

Symetrical
same upper/lower camber
most common in Helicopters
cheaper
center of Pressure hardly moves if angle of atack chnages
Asymetrical
more lift
center of pressure moves if angle of attack is change
angle of atacks changes during the whole rotation, tendence to flap, feather and lag
more
more difficult to build
expensive
The Main rotor in an R22
Stainless steel leading edge
Aluminum skins
Aluminum Honeycomb centre

3. Lift/Drag on an Airfoil
lift on an airfoil
The direction of lift, is always perpendicular to the relative wind
Lift formula: Lift = 1/2 pressure x Coificent of Lift x Surface area x velocity
L=1/2p CL S v
drag on an airfoil
is the resistance to motion
same formula as lift, but with the coificent of drag
three types of drag
Profile drag
frictional resistance of the blades
does not change much with change in angle of attack
increases moderately with increased airspeed
form drag is the wake caused by the seperation of airflow of a structure
skin friction is caused by the surface roughness
Induced drag
rotor blades develop lift -> causes a vortex trails behind each blade
major cause of drag at lower airspeeds
decreases at higher airspeeds
parasite drag
non lifting components of the helicopter (cabin, mast, tail, gear) against the wind
major cause of drag at higher airspeeds.
Why/how to overcome drag ?
Why ?
to maintain airspeed
to maintain proper rpm
how in normal powered flight
by power of the engine
how in autorotation
by airflow enters the disc from below
no induced or profile drag, only parasite
lift vector couples
Thrust and Lift work "together"
Weight and drag work "together" in the opposite direction
Total thrust
use picture one
effective Thrust produced by the rotor system
first determine lift produced and drag to get the total reaction
determine rotor thrust
see how the total thrust is acting in a horizontal plane --> total lift and total thrust

conclusion
2/4

Lukas Kb

11.3 Airfoils
cfi-ground

Last update: 11-23-2009

This lesson will be complete when, during oral quizzing, the student demonstrates a thorough understanding of
the subjects discussed.
What is the difference between symmetrical and asymmetrical airfoils and what are the pros and cons?
What parts do we have on an airfoil?
student evaluation
What angles do we use on an airfoil?
What forces act on an airfoil?
What forces act on a helicopter?
summary
We heared about different Airfoils, the parts of the Airfoils, and all related terms to lift/drag production.
references / further study Rotorcraft Flying Handbook Chapter 2, 3
completion standards

3/4

Lukas Kb

11.3 Airfoils
cfi-ground

Last update: 11-23-2009

pic 1 : Angles and total thrust

pic 1 : Angles and total thrust

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Lukas Kb