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Pressure contours on helicopter surface in forward flight.
Application: Simulating the Flowfield Around Helicopters
Posted Thu July 24, 2003 @09:36AM
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Application CFD (computational fluid dynamics) has for many years been at the heart of helicopter design, with steady state simulation of aerodynamics providing engineers with more design guidance than could ever be achieved from wind tunnel experiments alone. With deeper understanding of the complex flows involved, it has become clearer that new techniques are required to fully capture the true nature of the flow field. The key lies in developing flow field simulation technology to handle the transient affects associated with rotor motion, including, for example, pitching of the blades.

The Defence Aeronautics Programme at the CSIR (Council for Scientific and Industrial Research), in South Africa has been a key technology solution provider to the South African Air Force (SAAF) for the past five decades. Considerable resources have been dedicated to Helicopter Technology in particular. The programme’s CFD modeling and simulation, aeroelasticity, advanced structures and wind tunnel facilities, are being used to advance aeronautical technology relevant to helicopters in support of helicopter acquisition, operations, aerodynamic analysis and optimization, flight simulator development, hardware development and improvement.

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