UNIVERSITY OF SYDNEY DEPARTMENT OF AERONAUTICAL ENGINEERING
ROTOR WAKE INVESTIGATION USING THE SMOKE FLOW VISUALISATION TECHNIQUE
Osvaldo Maximo Querin March 1993
This thesis is submitted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Engineering (Research)
Experiments were carried out on a small four bladed rotor at different climb rates. The smoke-filament technique was used to visualise the rotor tip vortices; video equipment was then used to record the images produced. The recorded images were digitised and enhanced to assist in the identification of the vortex location. The vortex trajectories were compared with established data and with the paths generated by the general tip vortex path equations. It was found that these equations oversimplified the vortex trajectories, modelling neither the interaction between vortices nor their meandering.
The wakes studied showed evidence of vortex interaction. It was found that vortices close to one another combined in pairs and spun about a common centre as they moved downstream. A new mean path equation was thus defined which could model this type of behaviour. An exponential equation was selected to model the mean path. To assist in the determination of the order which best suited the curve, the least squares method was used. The meandering of the vortex trajectory about its mean path was studied and the types of instability present were determined. Three types of instability were found in tip vortices; short-wave, mutual-inductance and longwave. It was discovered that the helical path followed by a hovering rotor’s tip vortex was unstable under most flight conditions and that fluid damping suppressed the magnitude of these instabilities.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the members of staff in the Department of Aeronautical Engineering for their support and guidance over the past few years, with special mention to Mr John Blackler and Mr John Curtis for those words of wisdom when I most needed them. I would also like to give special thanks to K.C. Wong and Alex Tan for putting up with me.
I also want to thank my parents for their support and guidance, and Abbie for her support, understanding and patience.
5 2.5 Background Wake Path Equations Flow Visualisation Techniques Aim of this Research Outline of Research Presentation 1 4 5 5 6
2.3 1.3 2.
ROTOR WAKE VISUALISATION
2.4 2.6.1 2.6 Introduction Smoke Filament Technique Water Towing Tank Technique Small Particles Technique Schlieren Technique Shadowgraph Technique Shadowgraph and Schlieren Applications for Rotors Operating at Low Mach Numbers 2.1 1.4 1.2 2.0 2.CONTENTS
Page Abstract ii
List of Figures
List of Tables
1.2 1.2 Hot-Wire Technique Spark Technique 17 17 19 iv 7 7 10 12 13 15
22.214.171.124.2 5.1.2 3.4.
FLOW VISUALISATION EXPERIMENT
3.1 Experimental Equipment 3.4 3.4 Introduction Wake Results Wake Features Wake Instabilities Generalised Wake Geometries 5.1 5.2 Image Digitising Image Enhancement 30 31
5.3 Atmospheric Water Vapour Condensation Hot-Wire Anemometer Tracking Laser Velocimeter Tracking
20 20 20 22 23
ROTOR WAKE GEOMETRY RESULTS
Alternative Visualisation Techniques 2.3 Model Test Rotor Rotor Test Stand Wind Tunnel Facilities Synchronisation Equipment 24 24 25 26 27 28 29
Experimental Procedure Discussion
4.3 3.1 5.
4.2 3.4.0 5.4.1 4.1.8
3.4 Tip Vortex Mean Axial Path Equation Axial Path Instability Criterion Tip Vortex Mean Radial Path Equation Radial Path Instability Criterion 34 34 35 49 53 53 56 63 64
.2 2.3 5.7.3 5.2 5.
Position of video camera in relation to rotor. Double-pass Schlieren system. Typical arrangement for a radially traversing hot-wire probe spinning with the rotor. Spark shadowgraph photograph of flow behind a propeller. vortex sheets and rotor blade. Figure 15 21 17 18 19 15 16 12 13 14 14 9 10 11 8
Typical data indicating the position when the vortex core strikes the hot-wire probe. Dye-layer visualisation technique illuminated with laser sheet. 21 22 26 26 28 28
Figure 16 Figure 17 Figure 18 Figure 19 Figure 20 Figure 21
Typical tip vortex path determination data. (b) parallel light rays. Schematic diagram of the ’Z’ configuration Schlieren system. with dye discharged from blade tips and illuminated with laser sheet. Dimensioned diagram of the test rotor stand. Smoke-flow visualisation of tip vortices with two vortex cores shown. Figure 3 Figure 4 Figure 5 Dye-layer visualisation technique illuminated with flood lights. (a) divergent light rays. Digitised black and white video picture showing tip vortices. Improved wide-field shadowgraph set-up using a single beam splitter. Localised-dye visualisation technique. Schematic diagram of the synchronisation equipment. Figure 10 Figure 11 Typical Shadowgraph set-up for rotor wake visualisation.List of Figures
Figure 1 Figure 2 Typical oil smoke generator. Arrangement of smoke rake and test stand in wind tunnel. Shadowgraph systems.
. Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8 Figure 9 The Schlieren system. Figure 12 Figure 13 Figure 14 Hot-wire shadowgraph photograph of flow behind a propeller.
Instability mode shapes. (b) axial. (b) axial. (a) radial. (Ct = 0. (a) radial. The dark portions are outside the cylinder on the near side. 32
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries.0074) 43
Comparison between the experimental wake of Swanson et al (1992) and predicted wake geometries. (a) radial. (a) radial.0063) 41
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries.Figure 22
Digitised video picture with enhanced false colour imaging. (Ct = 0.0018) 38
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries. Reproduced from Widnall (1972). (Ct = 0.0042) 39
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries. (a) radial. (a) radial. (b) axial. (a) radial. (Ct = 0. 46
Individual vortex trajectories of the two vortices from the wake of figure 28. the light portions are inside. (Ct = 0. (b) axial.0167) 45
Individual vortex trajectories of the four vortices from the wake of figure 27. (b) axial. tip vortices and rotor blade are easily identified. (Ct = 0. the short-wave instability. Vortex sheets. the mutual -inductance modes with γ/k’ = 5/2 and 3/2. (b) axial.0078) 42
Comparison between the experimental wake of Bagai et al (1992-b) and predicted wake geometries. (a) radial. and the long-wave instability with γ/k’ = 1/2. (Ct = 0. (b) axial.0113) 44
Comparison between the experimental wake of Swanson et al (1992) and predicted wake geometries. (Ct = 0.0048) 40
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries. (b) axial. 50 viii
Individual vortex trajectories of the three vortices from the wake of figure 30.
(Ct = 0. Figure 37(a) Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.0074) Figure 47(b) Meander of vortex about mean radial path. The value of the ratio of core-to-cylinder radius are shown on each curve. Figure 47(a) Radial wake geometry and mean radial path. (Ct = 0.0048) Figure 44(b) Meander of vortex about mean radial path. Above the boundary. (Ct = 0. (Ct = 0. Figure 45(a) Radial wake geometry and mean radial path.0078) Figure 40(b) Meander of vortex about mean axial path.0063) Figure 45(b) Meander of vortex about mean radial path. 51 57 57 58 58 59 59 60 60 61 61 62 62 65 65 66 66 67 67 68 68 69 69 70 70
Figure 36(a) Axial wake geometry and mean axial path. (Ct = 0. (Ct = 0.0018) Figure 42(b) Meander of vortex about mean radial path.0074) Figure 41(b) Meander of vortex about mean axial path.0048) Figure 38(b) Meander of vortex about mean axial path. the helical filament of that core size is unstable. Figure 46(a) Radial wake geometry and mean radial path. (Ct = 0. (Ct = 0.
. (Ct = 0. Reproduced from Widnall (1972). (Ct = 0. Figure 40(a) Axial wake geometry and mean axial path. Figure 42(a) Radial wake geometry and mean radial path. Figure 44(a) Radial wake geometry and mean radial path. (Ct = 0.0078) Figure 46(b) Meander of vortex about mean radial path.Figure 35
Stability boundaries for helical vortex filaments of finite core.0018) Figure 36(b) Meander of vortex about mean axial path.0042) Figure 37(b) Meander of vortex about mean axial path. Figure 38(a) Axial wake geometry and mean axial path. Figure 41(a) Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.0042) Figure 43(b) Meander of vortex about mean radial path. (Ct = 0. Figure 39(a) Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.0063) Figure 39(b) Meander of vortex about mean axial path. Figure 43(a) Radial wake geometry and mean radial path.
List of Tables
Table 1 Table 2 Model Rotor Characteristics Rotor Test Parameters 25 35
m Non-dimensional radial tip vortex displacement relative to tip-pathplane R T Vz z z/R γ γ/k’ θtwist λ1 ρ ∂ρ ∂x ∂2ρ ∂x 2 σ ψ ψw Ω = = = = = Rotor radius. deg Measured parameter Atmospheric density. rad/s
b c CV CT kR k’ r r/R = = = = = = = = Number of blades Blade chord. kg/m3 Density gradient
= = = = =
Change in density gradient Rotor solidity. m Rotor thrust. Vz/(ΩR) Rotor thrust coefficient. m/s Axial dimension. deg Tip vortex age. N Axial velocity. bc/πR Blade azimuth angle. deg Rotor rotational frequency. m Non-dimensional axial tip vortex displacement relative to tip-pathplane = = = = = = Perturbation wave number Number of waves per cycle of the helix Blade twist angle. m Velocity coefficient. T/(ρπΩ2R4) (Pitch of the helix)-1 k/(1+k2R2) Radial dimension.
To partially account for such an effect. vertical flight and hover.Chapter
1. (Gessow et al 1985). the performance predicted by this method was still extremely optimistic. The analysis which followed consisted of balancing momentum and two-dimensional aerofoil theories to derive inflow and resulting lift and in-plane forces at each blade element. Performance predictions. the most important and critical to the rotorcraft is hover.1 BACKGROUND
Helicopters and related types of rotorcraft are versatile machines. in which the rotor was treated as an infinitesimally thin actuator disk with uniformly accelerated air throughout. such as those of Tanner (1964).
The methods used to predict performance have expanded dramatically over the past four decades. become a crucial element in the development and analysis of rotorcraft. However. the influence of the real rotor wake with tip and sheet vortices on the blades had not. This produced what is commonly known as blade element theory (Gessow et al 1985. the individual blade elements had to be considered. The reason for this is that hover performance can in most of these machines dictate their maximum usable payload. When limitations in these charts became evident due to increases in the number of blades and their loadings. researchers 1
To achieve this task. performance charts. The reason for this was that although blade characteristics had been accounted for. Stepniewski et al 1984). As more accurate performance predictions became necessary. the need for more general methods became necessary. Momentum theory has been the simplest and most basic approach. were produced for a large range of standard rotor blades and configurations. Their capabilities may include level flight. Of these flight regimes. therefore.
on the identification of the true path of tip vortices and vortex sheets led to the incorporation of Landgrebe’s (1969) forward flight wake analysis to the hover flight condition (Landgrebe. however. This theory described the wake as a series of cylindrical vortex sheets representing the radial variation of circulation.
The work of Miller (1962) and Willmer (1959). The analysis was then achieved by the implementation of the classical Biot-Savart law with numerical integration techniques. However. The work of Gray (1956. was followed by the work of Landgrebe (1969). the rotor wake had to be incorporated. limited the usefulness of this method for detailed rotor analysis. Three dimensional tip effects and wake non-uniformity caused by finite number of blades. This method has been the most widely used means of predicting performance for the past three decades. This was essentially the approach taken by Goldstein (1929) and Lock (1931) with propellers and later the work of Willmer (1959). although for forward flight. The
Equation 1 of this presentation
.at the time introduced a ’ Tip Loss Factor’ which assumed complete loss of lift over a small percentage of the blade at the tip. which used an undisturbed prescribed wake model. Piziali et al (1962) and Miller (1962) with helicopter rotors improved this representation of the wake. Their combined work redefined the representation of the wake into a mesh of discrete line vortices.
Blade tip vortex trajectories were represented by Landgrebe (1972) as simple analytical equations. The axial tip vortex path was modelled by two linear equations which produced what is normally termed ’the classical two sloped linear path’1. the spatial positioning of the wake elements was still uniform with wake contraction and the interaction between wake elements still not considered. In his work.
To solve the three dimensional problem with a finite number of blades. 1972) and Landgrebe (1972). 1972). This was originally done by using ’vortex theory’. The wake was divided into a series of near and far wake regions. the rotor was represented by numerous discrete vortex elements.
Reddy 1979). But the studies of Reddy et al (1987) and Mba et al (1991). In trying to determine the parameters which might cause such errors. Such apparent low levels of uncertainty could lead to as much as 20% error in the estimation of maximum payload (Clark et al. Limited availability of tip vortex trajectories produced by newly designed rotors meant that a more generalised approach was required.
Incorporation of the precise mean path of the wake as vortex filaments and of the rotor blades as either segmented vortex filaments or vortex panels. in which the tip vortex path was determined by the time history of the induced velocities everywhere in the wake generated by these vortex filaments. led to the development of Prescribed-Wake models for performance predictions (Kocurek et al 1977.
. The work of Kocurek et al (1977) improved these equations by considering parameters not included in Landgrebe’s (1972) work.
Both Prescribed and Free-Wake methods have in the past two decades been extensively used and improved to achieve better performance prediction accuracy. one of the main causes of such errors has been attributed to the inability of current wake vortex path models to faithfully simulate the radial and axial tip vortex paths3. 1991). in which the vortex path did not have to be known. 1982). and as Free-Wake methods place restrictions on the wake settling rates (Mba et al. have shown that performance predictions fall to within ±5% by these two methods. the vortex path was allowed to convect freely for the first revolution of the rotor.radial path was modelled with a first order exponential equation2. the work of Reddy (1986) has shown that rotor thrust and induced power are highly sensitive to small variations in tip vortex geometry. Further downstream trajectories of the tip vortex were assumed to maintain the same radial position with the axial rate equal to that at the end of the first revolution. 1969). As both methods depend greatly on the position of the wake.
Equation 6 of this presentation.
In the work of Mba (1991). Free-Wake analysis methods were developed (Clark et al 1970. Miller 1981.
1987) revealed the instabilities in the tip vortices. The axial and radial paths of Gray’s equation (1992) had the same format as equations 1 and 6 of this presentation. As these equations are linear for the axial vortex path.
. However his radial equation had the extra term ’ Be
sin (ψ) ’ added to it. He found that both the axial and radial tip vortex paths could be easily represented by simple algebraic expressions with very few measured parameters. The
multi-bladed nature of rotorcraft was considered by Landgrebe (1972) when he derived the general forms of the parameters in Gray’s (1992) equations to account for a wide range of rotor design and operating conditions4.
Equation 2 of this presentation.2
WAKE PATH EQUATIONS
The current empirical equations used to describe tip vortex paths had their origins in the work of Gray (1956. and first order exponential for the radial path. The extra term in Gray’s radial path equation may have been omitted due to blade aspect ratio on tip-shape effects. 1992) on single bladed rotors. The photographs reproduced in their publication (Norman et al.
The work of Kocurek et al (1977) was able to incorporate the effects of number of blades and twist to the parameters of the generalised equations of Landgrebe (1972). Equations 3 and 8 of this presentation. they produce a tip vortex structure which is everywhere symmetrical. The equations and parameters proposed by Landgrebe (1972) were only simple generalised representations of the tip vortex trajectory during the first revolution of the blade which produced it. The research of Norman et al (1987) had demonstrated that hovering rotor wakes could not be assumed to be symmetrical. the relationship between tip vortex instability growth and increase in rotor thrust and the asymmetrical structure of the vortex wake. The equations thus defined have remained unchanged and are still used as the governing equations for the prediction of tip vortex paths of hovering rotors5.1. neglecting the instabilities which arise further downstream.
These were: Smokefilament technique (Gray 1992. The work of Swanson et al (1992) had also formulated a relationship between tip vortex core growth rate and thrust coefficient and another between vortex core growth rate and vortex age. flow visualisation investigations had been carried out on rotor wakes in most flight regimes to observe and understand the structure and behaviour of their tip vortex trajectories.Further investigation of hovering rotor wakes using the shadowgraph technique of Swanson et al (1992) have corroborated the claim that tip vortex instabilities were dependent on rotor thrust levels. some achieving great success.
. Bagai et al 1991.3). in recent years. Landgrebe 1972). This has been due to its ability to accommodate large scale rotors operating at Mach numbers greater than 0. schlieren technique (Landgrebe 1972. Swanson et al 1992. the shadowgraph technique has become the most widely used. water-tank technique (Jenks et al.
The smoke-filament technique has been shown by the results of this research to work exceptionally well for rotors operating at low Mach numbers (M<0. Williams et al 1988. The methods used for this type of research have been various.3
FLOW VISUALISATION TECHNIQUES
From the early years of rotorcraft research. small particle technique (Timm. 1992(a). They appear to only indicate the tip vortex general trajectory rather than their mean path. Its success can be observed in the work of Norman et al (1987) and Swanson et al (1992). 1965).4
AIM OF THIS RESEARCH
The axial and radial tip vortex path equations are unable to model realistically the full path of the tip vortex. Of these methods. shadowgraph technique (Norman et al 1987. the smoke-filament and shadowgraph techniques have been the most successful.
1. However. 1992(b)).45. 1987). Such inadequacies in the predictions of the radial and axial paths have led this thesis to be initiated. Tangler et al 1973). This visualisation technique has been modified to allow tip vortices to be individually tracked during their journey downstream.
The smoke flow visualisation technique was selected after careful consideration of the experimental requirements and available resources. equipment used and the model test rotor have been described in chapter three. ascertain the forms of instabilities present and determine their characteristics.
. Chapter two examines in detail the most common visualisation techniques and their suitability for the requirements of this research. The processes involved in retreating each video frame and their enhancement procedures to reveal the position of the tip vortex core were described in chapter four. • Compare the experimental tip vortex paths with trajectories generated by the general equations formulated by Gray (1992).
The results of this research were described in chapter five. The different sections of this presentation describe more fully how this was achieved.
Descriptions of available facilities.
This study does not attempt to obtain a generalised tip vortex path equation. together with detailed explanations of modifications to the smoke filament technique and a full description of the experimental procedure. Landgrebe (1972) and Kocurek (1977). where the data obtained was analysed to realise the aim of this work. • Determine the meander of the vortex trajectories about their mean path. it only attempts to determine a type of equation which could better represent the tip vortex mean path.The aim of this thesis has been to study the radial and axial tip vortex paths of rotors experiencing hover and axial flow using the smoke visualisation technique. • Select an equation type which could better represent the mean vortex axial and radial trajectories and determine its coefficients for the tested rotor configurations6.5
OUTLINE OF RESEARCH PRESENTATION
The proposed aims stated in the previous section have been substantially accomplished.
The images produced by the smoke filament technique were recorded on video tape.
On mixing. This method. 1988) or a multi-tubed smoke rake (Lightfoot 1958. Gray 1992). Such observations have been made by researchers for many years (Lightfoot 1958. turbulent free smoke filaments which follow the flow's path. When illuminated with a stroboscopic light source. When illuminated. consisted of introducing into the flow field one or more fine. 7
. The most common way of doing this required the use of either a single tube (Williams et al.1
SMOKE FILAMENT TECHNIQUE
This technique. A typical oil smoke generator can be seen in figure 1.Chapter
TWO ROTOR WAKE VISUALISATION
2. Landgrebe 1972). observations must be made of the basic elements which constitute its structure. this produces a white cloud of smoke. the smoke filaments reveal to the observer some characteristics of the flow path. Landgrebe 1972. such as the tip vortex and vortex sheet. This chapter describes the suitability of the different visualisation techniques to rotor research.0 INTRODUCTION
To understand the behaviour of rotor wakes. The most common and safest method of smoke production requires kerosene or an eucalyptus oil-based solution to be heated to boiling point and the vapours produced mixed with air. Visualisation techniques have been developed or reconfigured to reveal the three dimensional characteristics of rotor wakes.
2. The method of introducing smoke into the rotor's wake is very dependent on what part of the flow the observer is interested in examining. used for low subsonic flow speeds. Such a device allowed the smoke to be emitted into the wake in a single plane. the tip vortices and the trailing vortex sheets could be observed (figure 2).
The images produced resemble those obtained by either the schlieren or shadowgraph techniques (Tangler et al 1973. To obtain a complete three dimensional image of the flow. 1992). This can be done by forcing smoke through ducts inside the blade. incorporated during the manufacturing process. and exiting onto the tip. it becomes entrapped by the strong tip vortex and travels downstream with it (Gray. only allowed a two dimensional slice of the wake to be viewed at any one time. A more direct way of viewing the full three dimensional wake can be achieved by introducing smoke through the tip of the rotor blade. pictures would need to be taken at different azimuth positions and the results processed to construct a three dimensional model of the wake. As the smoke leaves the blade tip.Norman et al 1987).however. The rate at which 8
Figure 1 : Typical oil smoke generator. revealing the wake structure.
the blade tips could be manufactured to have a cavity filled with a porous material impregnated with Titanium or Stannic Tetrachloride.
. These effects alter the trajectory of the vortex. The work of Rinehart (1971) has shown that such injections reduce the vortex swirl velocity component and their circulation strength as they travel downstream. thus making the results not representative of the rotor under investigation. Alternatively. Holes drilled at the tip would allow air to come into contact with the solution. with two vortex cores shown.
Figure 2 :
Smoke-flow visualisation of tip vortices.smoke is introduced into the flow must be carefully regulated to diminish the effects of flow injection into the tip vortex core. producing a dense white smoke which would escape from the tip with negligible alteration to the vortex path.
visualisation of the flow would be better achieved by using food colour or fluorescent dyes. where the water flows by gravity draining. the latter allowing for more detail investigation of the flow region. rotors could still be studied at different rates of climb. very low levels of turbulence and the capability of stratification by means of a salinity gradient. the former providing overall views of the flow. conventional flood lights or sheet laser light (Kogan et al 1987) could be used. The water. where the water circulates and the model is stationary. Such a process would involve depositing individual layers of water of slightly different density (controlled by the addition of salt). Introduction of the dyes into the flow field could be achieved in one of two ways. one at a time in the tank.2. the recirculating type used by Sarpkaya (1971). or the gravity fed type used by Werle (1986). they would need to be placed into the water as horizontal sheets prior to towing of the model. Towing tanks of the types used by Jenks et al (1987). establishing a continuous vertical gradient.
Figure 3 : Dye-layer visualisation technique illuminated with flood lights. in which the water is stagnant and the model moves. Figure 3 illustrates a possible arrangement for such a study. In these tanks. To form the horizontal sheet. If the dyes were introduced as layers. a small diameter string saturated with dye crystals would be placed into 10
. could all be used for this analysis. as dye-layers or locally. To illuminate it. The work of Jenks (1987) and Gad-el-Hak (1987) had been aimed at investigating rotors in the forward flight regime and although the hover flying regime would present obvious problems. once.2
WATER TOWING TANK TECHNIQUE
The use of water in preference to air as the working medium has the advantage of no recirculation problems. To achieve this a stable density stratification would be necessary. settled would allow the layers to partially diffuse into each other.
Figure 4 : Dye-layer visualisation technique illuminated with a laser sheet. When towed forward. and during the run this would dissolve directly off the blade and into the wake. As before. If discharged. If using flood lights. the flow would be illuminated by either flood lights or a laser sheet. focused on this plane. having the advantage of allowing for large number of tests per day. To introduce the dyes locally. part of the blade would be covered with a dye paste. forming a helix like structure (figure 5) as the rotor is towed through the tank. If pasted. the camera would be located perpendicularly above the sheet of laser light. it would have to coincide with the dye layer (figure 4). For rotor flow investigation with the dye-layer technique. figure 3 shows an arrangement which could be implemented relatively easily. the dye would become entrapped by the tip vortex. The camera would need to be positioned perpendicularly above the dye layer (figures 3 & 4). Due to the complex nature of the flow. The rotor would need to be set perpendicular to the towing direction. These techniques require fresh water tanks (no density gradient). Although both illumination techniques could be used. with its plane of symmetry coinciding with the dye layer. the dyes would need to be introduced into the flow through small orifices at the blade tips. these would have to illuminate the dye-layer from above (figure 3). both means of dye introduction require the camera's shutter speed to
. they could either be pasted on to the rotor blades or be discharged at the blade tips. but if the laser sheet were used.the tank and towed at a very low speed. the sheet of laser light is preferred as it permits the helix to be viewed or filmed in different planes parallel to the rotor's spinning axis (figure 5). If the localised dye technique were used. allowing for the dye to be washed away from the string as the water flows around it.
The small size of the seeding particles created a lot of debris which may remain floating in the air for some time. This would be to enable the film to capture the flow at various azimuthal blade positions. moderate success was achieved in visualising the effects of obstacle-induced flow recirculation by using very small sugar pine or spruce sawdust. this technique worked well. with dye discharged from blade tips and illuminated with a laser sheet.3
SMALL PARTICLES TECHNIQUE
In this technique. would need to have low inertia to follow the local direction of the fluid motion and not be affected by gravity. Such a situation could cause health problems if the people operating the experiment were not suitably protected. it had major disadvantages.
2. small solid particles would be introduced into the airstream and observed by reflected or scattered light. however.
Figure 5 :
Localised-dye visualisation technique. The particles.be greater than the rotational speed of the rotor. Although in the work of Timm (1965). In early work done on rotor wakes (Timm 1965).
The basic Schlieren system.
Figure 6 : The Schlieren system. Although the knife edge could be used in any orientation. When a knife edge is inserted at the focal point B. In the work of Tangler et al (1973) a modified version of the ' Z ' configuration was used with great success (figure 7). Diverging light from a point source at A is converted into a parallel beam and passed through the region of fluid to be viewed. is presented in figure 6. if orientated parallel to the flow. which is proportional to the first derivative of the density variation in the working fluid (Merzkirch 1987. the ' Double . The parallel beam then passes through another lens and is focused at B. For rotor work investigation. However. if placed perpendicular to the flow axis the density gradients will lighten or darken the screen depending on their sign and on which side of the focal point B. the knife edge is located. In such an arrangement. the lenses of figure 6 would be replaced by two spherical or parabolic mirrors. If greater sensitivity were required.2. more complex arrangements would be required. This elimination of rays from the image resulted in a variation of illumination at the screen. Pankhurst et al 1965). half the image would depict one illumination pattern based on the density gradient whereas the other half would show the reverse pattern for the same density gradient. 13
. deflecting away from the focal point. Clancy 1978. This system consists of a conical light source passing twice through the working fluid. developed in 1864 by Töepler. so that the vortex sheet could be viewed. generating an image of the flow on the screen. rays that were deflected in one direction from the parallel would be prevented from reaching the viewing screen. enlarging somewhat the field of view. Pope et al 1965. Variations in the working fluid's density cause the light rays to deviate from their original paths.Pass Schlieren System ' could be used (figure 8).
2). Although this may be sufficient for rotors of small diameter (Tangler et al 1973).Figure 7 : Schematic diagram of the 'Z ' configuration Schlieren system. however its major drawback would be restrictions on the field of view imposed by the size of the mirrors.
Figure 8 : Double-pass Schlieren system
. it would be inadequate for viewing wakes generated by full scale rotors.65 < M < 1. If the wide-field schlieren system were used (Burton 1949) problems would be encountered in the manufacture of the large precision ruled grids required.
This system is very good for the visualisation of rotor wakes operating in the transonic region (0.
For configuration 2. all light rays will be deflected by the same amount and the light intensity at the screen will be constant. developed by Dovøák in 1880. it is customary to use configuration 1. (b) parallel light rays. The optical elements required for configuration 1 (figure 9(a)) are a high-intensity point light source (spark-electrode discharge (Bagai et al 1992)) and a retroreflective screen. increasing the illumination on the screen. altering the light intensity on the screen. however. Swanson et al 1992. (a) divergent light rays. due to the large diameter of rotors. Light et al 1992). they will be deflected in proportion to the density gradients (Mñ/Mx). the light rays converge.5
The shadowgraph system. (figure 9(b)) the same equipment as for configuration 1 would be used plus a lens or mirror. Where the density gradients increase (M2ñ/Mx2 > 0).
Figure 9 : Shadowgraph systems. with photographic and video cameras to record the wake for quantitative analysis. the deflection of light rays will not be constant.
The principle of the shadowgraph technique may be described as follows: As light rays pass through a fluid medium of varying density. configuration 1 is better suited and more widespread (Bagai et al 1992. In regions where these gradients are constant. the light rays will diverge. Different optical
. In regions of the fluid where the gradients change. is the simplest optical visualising process dependent on changes of the fluid refractive index.2. Where the density gradients decrease. decreasing the illumination of the screen. Both configurations could be used for rotor wake visualisation. For rotor wake investigation. and has two configurations. Norman et al 1987.
This causes two serious problems.
To solve the problems associated with the off-axis alignment of the camera and light source. However.
Figure 10 : Typical shadowgraph set-up for rotor wake visualisation.arrangements of the equipment can be observed in figures 10 and 11.65. The shadowgraph arrangement of figure 10 has been successfully used in the past (Norman et al 1987. as a distinctive 16
. resulting in the reflected light rays travelling at slightly different angles to the incident rays. By introducing a beam splitter they were able to achieve a light intensity 4 times greater than for the previous arrangement. This technique has been very successful in visualising rotors operating at Mach numbers greater than 0. Secondly. Light et al 1992). with great success. with the added effect of permitting the use of higher camera shutter speeds and/or smaller lens apertures. It has been determined by Bagai et al (1992-a) that a change in the observation angle by one degree would reduce the intensity of the light received by the camera by a factor of 16. the intensity of the reflected light back to the camera decreases almost exponentially with increasing observation angle. however in such systems the optical path of the camera is "off-axis" to the incident light beam. Firstly it produces a 'ghost' image which in some instances can obscure the area of flow under scrutiny. as the off-axis distance is increased. Bagai et al (1992-a) performed experiments with the shadowgraph arrangement of figure 11. and as research shows it has been the most frequently used technique for full or near full scale rotor visualisation in recent years. Swanson et al 1992.
however.3). permitting the shadowgraph and schlieren systems to be used. Their high temperature causes the density of the air passing over them to be decreased. the density variation through the wake becomes too low to be detected by methods dependent on changes in the fluid refractive index.density gradient variation is required. is that forced changes in the density of the fluid may cause its flow pattern to be altered.
Figure 11 : Improved wide-field shadowgraph set-up using a single beam splitter (Bagai et al 1992-a). When such a pattern is illuminated by a stroboscopic light source in 17
. In the work of Townend (1931).1
The technique consists of placing into the air stream a grid of fine electrically heated wires.
2. the method doesn't suit rotors operating at low Mach numbers (M < 0. producing very fine streamlines of refractive index different to that of the surrounding air.6
SHADOWGRAPH AND SCHLIEREN APPLICATIONS FOR ROTORS OPERATING AT LOW MACH NUMBERS
For studies on rotors operating at low Mach numbers.6.
2. The drawback of the system. two techniques were developed which artificially altered the density of the fluid.
in a similar manner as the smoke filament technique. (Townend 1931). The grid recommended by Townend (1931) and Pankhurst et al (1965) should be manufactured from platinum wire approximately 0. The wire should be heated to a dull red colour. requiring a 14 V battery and approximately 1 Amp for a flow speed of approximately 10 m/s. it would reveal a two dimensional view of the wake. they were displayed vertically to assist the reader in determining how the flow generated by a hovering rotor would appear when visualised using these techniques. showing such a view7. with the individual wires set about 13 mm apart.synchronisation with the spinning rotor.
Although figures 12 and 13 were of flow generated by a propeller. Figure 12 has been reproduced from the work of Townend (1931).
Figure 12 :
Hot-wire shadowgraph photograph of flow behind a propeller. 18
.05 mm in diameter and between 13 to 26 mm long.
5 mm.p. (Townend 1931). These volumes may be considered to be small enough to be thought of as particles.2
In this technique. By using synchronised stroboscopic light. a series of electric sparks are discharged into the flow causing small volumes of air to be heated. The electrode was manufactured from oxidised piano wire with a spark gap of approximately 9. Figure 13 has been reproduced from the work of Townend (1931). as for the Hot-wire technique. alternator delivering 150 V at 2000 RPM.
Figure 13 :
Spark shadowgraph photograph of flow behind a propeller. using a 0. The output from the alternator was then passed through a series resistance of about 100 ohms to a transformer which stepped the voltage 100 times. the path of these particles could be determined. and as was done for the Hot-Wire Technique. showing such a view. the latter method was found to be more favourable. hence supplying a time scale along the streamline from which the velocity at any point could be determined.5 h.2. the paths of these volumes could be tracked using the Shadowgraph or Schlieren Methods. In the work of Townend (1931).
Generation of the sparks could be achieved by the use of an ignition coil or an alternator. Again. the pictures produced represent a two dimensional slice of the rotor's wake.6.
Under these conditions the water vapour in the air is condensed by the low-pressure inside the vortex core. remaining visible for up to one and a half revolutions of the rotor.1
Atmospheric Water Vapour Condensation
Under certain ideal conditions. where one or more characteristics of the flow can be viewed by the observer as it happens. the full tip vortex path can be reconstructed. the flow generated by a full scale rotor may be viewed with the naked eye. their unique means of producing quantitative wake trajectory data warrants a mention in a review of different wake visualisation techniques.
2. however is an indirect flow visualisation method.7.7.2. During each traverse it records the radial position.
2. its location is determined when its core strikes the hot wire probe. azimuthal position of the blade with respect to the probe and the velocity profile signal. In this technique.16 ).
. has shown that tip vortices could be seen on days of high humidity.2
Hot-Wire Anemometer Tracking
The methods described thus far comprise the direct flow visualisation techniques.7
ALTERNATIVE VISUALISATION TECHNIQUES
The following direct and indirect methods of flow visualisation have not been widely used. producing a very distinct dip (figure 15) in the velocity signal. On compilation of all the vortex locations. However. As the tip vortex can not be seen. The work of Jenney et al (1968) and Felker et al (1986).2) and at high thrust coefficients ( CT > 0.65 < M < 1. with rotors operating in the transonic speed region (0. axial distance behind the tip path. The Hot-Wire Anemometer Tracking Technique. a hot wire probe is traversed radially through the wake at different planes downstream of the rotor's tip path (figure 14). nor provide results of the calibre of the above mentioned techniques.
Figure 14 :
Typical arrangement for a radially traversing hot-wire probe spinning with the rotor.
Figure 15 :
Typical data indicating the position when the vortex core strikes the hot-wire probe
The only problem with this technique can be attributed to the unsteady nature of the tip vortex. Due to the meandering of such vortices as they travel downstream, they become almost impossible to locate, a problem experienced by Caradona et al (1981) when using this technique.
Laser Velocimeter Tracking
This is also an indirect flow visualisation technique. In a similar way as for the HotWire technique, the velocity profile signal is measured at different radial and axial positions. The vortex location is determined by the same dip in the velocity signal. However, the velocity profile at each azimuth angle could be reconstructed from the recorded signal to provide not only the tip vortex coordinates but also its size, magnitude, and rate of growth or decay. This is illustrated in the results of figure 16, obtained by Pouradier et al (1981). The technique, although more sophisticated than the Hot-Wire, still has problems determining the vortex paths after one revolution due to their meandering.
Figure 16 :
Typical tip vortex path determination data.
This chapter has given a brief overview of the many flow visualisation techniques which could be applied to rotor wake investigation. In deciding the most suitable experimental technique for this work, test parameters, equipment availability and rotor characteristics were some of the factors considered. The work of Caradona et al (1981), Light et al (1992) and Bagai et al (1991) have shown that from the time a vortex is formed until the following blade passes over it, its trajectory is approximately steady. But once the vortex from the following blade develops the radial and axial paths of the previous vortex show a more erratic behaviour. As this is the region of the flow of most interest in this study, both the Hot-Wire Anemometer and Laser Velocimeter Tracking techniques could not be used. Limitations on rotor size due to available wind tunnel facilities (see section 3.1.3), and on the size of the drive unit (section 3.1.2) have restricted the operation of the rotor to low thrust coefficients (CT < 0.01) and low Mach numbers (M < 0.25). These values were too low for the Atmospheric Water Vapour Condensation, Schlieren and Shadowgraph techniques. Although the Hot-Wire and Spark techniques could have been used to assist the latter two techniques in revealing the wake, the density variation within the working fluid caused by the nature of these techniques may have altered the vortex trajectories. The Small Particle Technique, although suitable for the test conditions, creates vast amounts of debris, and as a Water Towing Tank was not readily available, the Smoke Filament technique was selected as the technique for the visualisation of the model rotor.
THREE FLOW VISUALISATION EXPERIMENT
3.1 EXPERIMENTAL EQUIPMENT
The facilities available at the time this project was initiated were not sufficient to accommodate full scale investigation of rotor systems. For this reason, the decision was made to use a small scale model rotor such as those used by Landgrebe (1972), Gray (1992) and other researchers. Visualisation results obtained from such model rotors have been successfully used by Landgrebe (1972), Gray (1992) and Kocurek et al (1977) to generate general vortex tip path equations for performance prediction of full scale rotors.
Model test rotor
The visualisation program involved subjecting the rotor to hover and positive climb rates. Introduction of axial flow onto the rotor could only be achieved in the wind tunnel of the Department of Aeronautical Engineering at the University of Sydney (section 3.1.3). Its size restricted the overall dimensions of the model rotor. Since the effect of changing the parameters was not intended to be studied, a standard rectangular blade with a NACA 0012 section was used. Table 1 lists the characteristics of the rotor system tested.
TABLE 1 : Model Rotor Characteristics Number of Blades, b Rotor Radius, R (m) Blade Chord, c (m) Blade Root Cut Out (m) Blade Twist (Deg) Blade Aspect Ratio, AR Rotor Solidity, ó Blade Aerofoil Blade Pitch Setting (Deg) Blade Taper Ratio Blade Tip 4 0.3145 0.0381 0.08 0o 6.15 0.1542 NACA 0012 10o 1.0 Square
Rotor test stand
Testing of the rotor in the wind tunnel was achieved by the use of a test stand designed and fabricated in the Department of Aeronautical Engineering. It was attached to the wind tunnel balance, allowing the rotor thrust to be measured via the balance drag component along the wind tunnel axis. For torque measurements, a strain gauge support arm prevented the rotation of the drive relative to the test stand, however problems associated with the size of the support arm prevented any such readings from being taken. The drive unit consisted of a 50 Watt electric motor with a speed adjustable up to 3000 RPM. The speed was controlled accurately by a variable voltage transformer. The overall dimensions of the test stand are given in figure 17. The rotor was mounted 0.8 m ahead of the wind tunnel supports to minimise any interference effects between the rotor wake and the supports. This gave sufficient time for the tip vortices in the wake to develop, become unstable and interact before interference from the supports occurred.
Figure 17 : Dimensioned diagram of the test rotor stand.
Wind tunnel facilities
The experiments were carried out in the Department of Aeronautical Engineering's 7ft x 5ft wind tunnel. It is a closed circuit tunnel operating at low speed, with atmospheric pressure in the test section. For these experiments the normal closed test section was removed and the tunnel run in an open jet configuration, as shown in figure 18.
Figure 18 : Arrangement of smoke rake and test stand in wind tunnel.
Introduction of the smoke into the flow was achieved by positioning the smoke rake before the contraction region of the tunnel. This reduced any turbulence present as the 26
Figure 19 shows the layout of the test stand and synchronisation equipment.smoke exited the rake.4
Synchronisation of the blade cycle with the video recording camera was accomplished using generally available electronic equipment. a low intensity laser beam was aimed at a photoelectric cell. This allowed the smoke to highlight the tip and the trailing edge sheet vortex. Also. Each interruption of the beam caused the photoelectric cell to produce a step pulse which was transmitted to a cathode-ray oscilloscope (CRO).
3.1. The video camera used was a standard CCD model with reasonable low light level recording capability and an effective shutter speed of about 1/25th of a second. so that the beam could be interrupted once every revolution.
. Its vertical position had to be altered every time the flow conditions were changed. but the frame was relatively free of the blurring that would occur if a more intense strobe or continuous illumination was used. and facing downstream towards the rotor. The signal amplitude was slightly low. The flashes of light produced by the stroboscopic unit were of high intensity and very short duration. less than 1/1000th of a second. Its trajectory was close to the rotor hub which had a small protruding arm parallel and offset from its rotational axis. To determine the rotational speed of the rotor. It was positioned vertically (figure 18). The combination of flash and shuttering speeds meant that the light sensitive elements of the camera were illuminated for only a small fraction of the frame scan. The time between each pulse could be measured from the CRO providing the rotational speed of the rotor. the CRO was programmed to produce a time delayed output signal which triggered the stroboscopic light source at any intermediate azimuth angle for a complete revolution of the rotor.
however. was in the alignment of the video camera.
. For each experiment. The most important step. and as a position reference for the location of the vortex cores in the final processed images.2
Upon completion of the calibration process on the electronic flash equipment. Both records were used to determine if the camera alignment had been altered during the experiment. a calibration grid made of 30 mm squares was placed just behind the rotor in the vertical plane passing through the rotor axis. The calibration grid was recorded before and after each experiment was completed.
Figure 20 : Position of video camera in relation to rotor. the flow visualisation and recording of the flow patterns was a reasonably simple procedure.
3. It was set perpendicularly to the flow direction and in the plane of the injected smoke (figure 20).Figure 19 : Schematic diagram of the synchronisation equipment. It was located a distance of 3 metres away from the rotor axis.
This provided multiple frames of information for each required data point and allowed the unsteady flow effects to be investigated and revealed in fine detail. providing quantitative information on its oscillatory motion. and its interactions with adjacent vortices. and when used.
3. These illuminated flow patterns were continuously recorded by the video camera. When reconstructing the axial and radial paths of the tip vortices.3
The method of flow visualisation described in this chapter. At each azimuth setting the video recorded for an average of one and a half minutes. the rotor was set at the required rotational speed. The smoke streaklines were then introduced into the flow and illuminated by the synchronised strobe light as they passed through or near the rotor. thus enabling the path of each vortex to be observed and studied individually. each vortex could be traced back to the blade which generated it. Recordings were made at blade azimuth angle steps of between 10o and 15o for up to one full rotor revolution.Once the calibration grid was recorded. its instability.
. although tedious and time consuming. provided the most detailed information on the wake structure. the wind tunnel was also set to the required speed.
FOUR IMAGE PROCESSING
4. Each video frame captured had a resolution of 256x244 picture elements (pels). Each element represented a grey level with amplitudes in the range from 0 to 63. The first image processed was that of the reference grid. The grid covering the whole video image was mapped so that any picture distortions over the image area due to the camera or the digitising process could be accounted for.
. Using this map. Once the digitised images had been transmitted to the computer they were stored as disk files. using the CA3306 Flash A/D converter chip. 1987).1 IMAGE DIGITISING
The recorded video images were played back through a standard video recorder and appropriate frames were selected for processing. The video digitising hardware was assembled locally within the Department of Aeronautical Engineering and was based on a simple integrated circuit design (Circuit Cellar Inc. pel locations were translated into coordinate locations in the (YZ) vertical plane passing through the axis of the rotor. A mapping was obtained between the grid points and the image picture elements. A sample digitised frame is shown in figure 21. Individual frames were captured using analog to digital conventional hardware connected to the serial port of a standard IBM compatible personal computer. The video signal was scanned and its amplitude digitised to a stream of integer data. A set of about 250 to 300 images were required to obtain an accurate vortex map for a given rotor configuration. This equipment was chosen because of its simplicity and economy.
4. Because of the contrast between the dark vortex core and the bright smoke in the rotating flow surrounding the core it was felt that the filtering technique would be most appropriate. Several initial methods used were based on edge detection filtering algorithms. The result was typically an outline of the significant components contained within the picture. regions having a high intensity gradient were brightened whereas regions of approximately constant amplitude were set to near black.Figure 21 : Digitised black and white video picture showing tip vortices. such as that of Seit et al (1988) and a much simpler outline algorithm described in the reference text by Gonzales et al (1987). Pictures processed by this technique showed accurately the outline of the rotor blade and the outlines of the smoke streaklines upstream of the rotor but were 31
. Using these processes.2
Several image processing techniques were applied to the captured video pictures in order to enhance the images and thus more accurately locate the vortex cores. vortex sheets and rotor blade.
Figure 22 :
Digitised video picture with enhanced false colour imaging. Vortex sheets. tip vortices and rotor blade easily identified. A second processing technique was attempted by using false colour imaging of the pictures. both VGA display pages and a sequence of ditter patterns. The display hardware used on the computer was a Video Graphics Array (VGA) so the limit of only 16 basic colours could be displayed. However. by using the extra resolution of the VGA display (640x480).inconclusive in highlighting the vortex cores. 32
. it was possible to cover the range of 64 intensity levels within the original digitised frame. In many cases only the initial blade tip vortex could be seen with the successive helical spirals disappearing from the picture. A computer program was written to convert the grey level image files into false colour pictures (figure 22). On closer examination of the video intensity levels near the vortices it was found that the contrast between the core and the surrounding smoke rapidly diminished due to what is assumed to be diffusion of smoke in the core.
By superimposing all the vortex data points from one frame with those of other frames recorded around a blade circuit.
. In this way the smoke regions surrounding the vortex cores were highlighted using false colour representation and thus the location of the vortex was more easily distinguished. Using the digitised grid map the pel location was converted to a coordinate location (YZ) in the plane perpendicular to the axis of the rotor. The user could choose to have any one of the 16 screen colours selected from a range of 64 RGB levels. its centroid position was recorded as a row/column pel location and approximate diameter measured. Once the pattern of the circular vortex core had been recognised.The screen images were further modified using the built-in hardware palette features of the VGA display. the path of each shed vortex can be constructed in three dimensions. A single data point for the shed vortex helix was obtained by combining the digitised coordinate location with the azimuth angle for that particular frame.
these were analysed and fitted with a mean path curve. 1992-b).18
The axial flow speed relative to the lowest velocity coefficient value of 0. The hover tip vortex path data used came from the work of Bagai et al (1991. Blade tip vortex axial and radial path data were plotted and compared with the paths generated by the generalised vortex path equations of Landgrebe (1972) and Kocurek et al (1977).042 to 0. Most of their results had significant degrees of scatter present to which the authors gave little significance. 1992b) and Swanson et al (1992). The meandering about this mean path was also plotted to determine the forms of instability present.
5. Bagai et al 1992-b). 34
. Such a small axial velocity component would classify the rotor as experiencing near pure hover conditions. the tip vortex paths did not exhibit the scatter present in the hover wakes.042 was 2 m/s.Chapter
FIVE ROTOR WAKE GEOMETRIES
5. ranging from 0. For this reason experiments were carried out with the rotor subjected to different rates of axial flow. In wakes experiencing axial flow. The paths which had evidence of vortex interaction were re-plotted with each tip vortex marked.0 INTRODUCTION
The results obtained in this research were compared with the tip vortex path data found in the work of Swanson et al (1992) and Bagai et al (1991. Hence experiments performed for this study were carried out at five different velocity coefficients (Cv).1
Tip vortex path data for rotors in the hover regime was readily available from other sources (Swanson et al 1992.
0113 0. until they appear to both merge and diffuse.13 and 1. the vortex cores move closer to each other.0167 CT/ó 0. from its trajectory immediately after being generated to that after the following blade passed over it. 35
.1 0. In figures 31.146 Source Present Work Present Work Present Work Present Work Present Work Bagai et al (1992-b) Swanson et al (1992) Swanson et al (1992)
5.0042 0.5 revolutions.0078 0. does not in most cases follow the classical two sloped linear path. Then the vortex could follow one of two different axial paths. representing the axial vortex paths. the axial vortex path exhibited a smooth transition.031 0. Instead.027 0.081 0.0018 0.2
The tip vortex path data presented here show the important characteristics which the equations formulated by Landgrebe (1972) and Kocurek et al (1977) do not describe. where this phenomenon can be observed.0048 0. The most predominant feature can be observed in the wakes of rotors in pure hover.099 0. 32 and 33. it maintained an almost constant axial displacement rate for approximately 0. These figures show that as vortices are shed.041 0.051 0. denoted by the forked shape of figures 27(b) through 30(b).042 CT 0.Table 2 : Rotor Test Parameters Case 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Figure 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 Cv 0.0063 0. they pair up with adjacent vortices and spin about a common centre some distance between the two. The significance of this was better understood when the paths of each individual vortex filament was plotted (figures 31.060 0.075 0.32 and 33). the axial paths cross over each other approximately 1.012 0.33 revolutions after the vortex formation.08 0.0074 0. Once the vortex had passed its transition region. The data of figures 27(b) through 30(b). As they move downstream.
However at different times the vortex from blade 3 may interact with that of blade 1.
. 33(a)). The vortex path of figure 27 was generated by combining the trajectories of all four vortices in the wake.08 revolutions after the first crossing.67 and 0.75 revolutions after being formed.2 revolution in very good agreement with the experimental results of this study. enclosed a region formed approximately 0. however. In figure 33(b) the axial path of the vortex from blade 2 interacts with that of blade 3. the selected arrangement indicated that the axial crossing of the vortices generated by blades 2 and 3 occurred after approximately 1. however. their strength and similar rotational sense produce a detrimental interaction . and that the vortex from blade 1 may interact with that of blade 2. In the work of Gray (1992).29 & 30) did not include the individual trajectories of each tip vortex produced by each rotor blade. the spin rate has slowed down by between 35% and 44%. This is indicative of the spin rate of the two entrapped vortices. This is verified by the next vortex radial cross-over which occurred between 0. These vortex paths.75 revolutions after the vortex formation. the radial paths appeared to possess only smoothly defined trajectories. but a proposed cause might be that as vortices become entrapped in each other's field. Although it was impossible to identify which blade generated each vortex. The hover tip vortex paths presented here. approximately half the time taken for the axial paths to cross over. the rate of spin diminished as the vortices moved closer together and further downstream.88 and 1. causing them to loose strength and diffuse. a 'reverse' procedure was performed on some of their data. To better understand the behaviour of the wakes of the other researchers. behaved similarly to the vortex trajectory of the wake with the lowest velocity coefficient (figure 27). adjacent vortices crossed over each other between 0. Landgrebe (1972) and Kocurek et al (977).The tip vortex data reproduced from other sources (figures 28. The reason for such a reduction in rotational speed is not known. This figure shows the interaction between adjacent vortices. The paths were very carefully studied and the individual path of the three tip vortices of the wake of figure 30 were extracted and re-plotted in figure 33. alternatively. When each individual radial vortex path was plotted (figures 32(a). On more careful examination of figure 31(a).
They become more linear. but far greater than those predicted by the equations of Landgrebe (1972) and Kocurek et al (1977). both the radial and axial paths were significantly changed. with a stabilising effect on the wake structure.
. with a considerable less scatter of points than in the pure hover case. The two-gradient axial trajectories vanished and were replaced by a single path of almost constant gradient.125 revolutions after being formed. with a very small contraction gradient which appeared to be dependent in the velocity and thrust coefficients. then the vortex becomes affected by the axial flow and the radial paths are diverted away from its predicted path. The radial vortex paths are also significantly affected by the axial flow. Figures 23(a) through 26(a).When the tip vortices were subjected to axial flow (figures 23 through 26). These paths no longer cross over one another and are very stable. Such a change in the axial path was expected as the vortices experience axial flow which carries them downstream at a constant speed. show that the vortices follow the general trajectory predicted by the generalised equations for 0.
Figure 23(b) :
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries. (a) radial. (b) axial. 38
(a) radial.Figure 24(a)
Figure 24(b) :
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries. 39
. (b) axial.
Figure 25(b) :
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries. (b) axial. (a) radial. 40
(a) radial. (b) axial. 41
Figure 26(b) :
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries.
. (b) axial.Figure 27(a)
Figure 27(b) :
Comparison between experimental and predicted wake geometries. (a) radial.
Figure 28(b) :
Comparison between the experimental wake of Bagai et al (1992-b) and predicted wake geometries. (b) axial. 43
. (a) radial.
. (b) axial.Figure 29(a)
Figure 29(b) :
Comparison between the experimental wake of Swanson et al (1992) and predicted wake geometry. (a) radial.
(b) axial 45
Figure 30(b) :
Comparison between the experimental wake of Swanson et al (1992) and predicted wake geometry. (a) radial.
Figure 31(b) :
Individual vortex trajectories of the four vortices from the wake of figure 27. 46
Figure 32(b) :
Individual vortex trajectories of the two vortices from the wake of figure 28. 47
Figure 33(b) :
Individual vortex trajectories of the three vortices from the wake of figure 30. 48
. consisted of evaluating the self-induced velocities at the filament due to these perturbations. These were then used kinematically to determine the resulting motion of the filament and thus the growth rate of the perturbations. Kocurek et al (1977). However. discovered two additional modes influenced by the entire vortex filament. In the work of Landgrebe (1972). Gray (1956).3
The presence of instabilities in rotor wakes have always been known to exist.
The investigation performed by Widnall (1972) on the stability of a helical vortex filament following small sinusoidal displacements of its centre-line. these instabilities had been revealed by the visualisation methods employed. and helical. vortex filaments.
Theoretical studies have. but in performing a more thorough study of helical vortex wakes. The results obtained showed three distinct types of instabilities present in helical vortex filaments:
Short-Wave Instability. Swanson et al (1992) and Bagai et al (1992-b). where the number of oscillatory waves per cycle are less than the pitch of the helix (kR). (Betchov 1965). and appeared to be related to the rotor's thrust. (Widnall 1972). The work of Widnall (1972) verified this mode of instability.
Mutual-Inductance or Low-Wave Number Instability. been carried out on the stability of curved. however. where the number of oscillatory waves per cycle (ã/k') is very high. no detailed experimental analysis appeared to have been done which attempted to explain the causes and modes of these instabilities.5. The analysis of Betchov (1965) showed that helical vortex filaments were unstable for perturbation wavelengths longer than 2ð times the local radius of curvature of the unperturbed filament and stable for shorter waves.
the short-wave instability. and the long-wave instability with ã/k' = 1/2. showing the short-wave instability.
. and the long-wave instability with ã/k' = 1/2.(3)
Long-Wave Instability. the mutual-inductance modes with ã/k' = 5/2 and
/2. ie: where the pitch of the helix is greater than or equal to 31/3. With the mutual-inductance
instability the neighbouring filaments attempt to roll-up around one another in much the same way as hovering rotor vortices do. the mutual-inductance modes with ã/k' = 5/2 and 3/2.
A sketch of the typical mode shapes for the various instabilities is given in figure 34. where successive turns of the vortex pass within the distance of one radius from each other. the light portions are inside. The dark portions are outside the cylinder on the near side. Reproduced from Widnall (1972).
Figure 34 :
Instability mode shapes.
These results for various core size ratios can be seen in figure 35.From his analysis. wave numbers smaller than the local circumference are unstable. the Short-Wave mode and the Local-Induction instability. 51
. Widnall (1972) was able to obtain stability boundaries as function of helix pitch (kR). The general trends for the stability boundary for a given core size were determined by Widnall (1972) to be as follows: “For kR below some critical value two instability modes are present. number of waves per cycle (ã/k') and vortex core radius (rv /R).”
Figure 35 :
Stability boundaries for helical vortex filaments of finite core. Above the boundary. Reproduced from Widnall (1972). The value of the ratio of core-to-cylinder radius are shown on each curve. very small core sizes. the Mutual-Inductance modes become unstable. It is always stable for ã/k' / 1 and there is an upper boundary for the short-wave instability for any vortex core size. with increasing kR (decreasing pitch). the helical filament of that core size is unstable. with further increases in kR the Mutual-Inductance modes merge and the helix is unstable for almost all wavelengths. In the limit of very.
Very heavily loaded rotors have completely unstable wakes with all modes of instabilities present. wakes experiencing ShortWake. may be affected by fluid damping to the extent of having the instabilities suppressed completely or maintained but in a quasi-stable state.
Although in the work of Betchov (1965) and Widnall (1972).
The growth in size of the vortex core as it travels downstream has been shown by the work of Thomson (1988) and Swanson et al 1992. This means that a wake with vortices in a quasi-stable state could become unstable when the thrust is increased. This means that vortices formed under quasi-steady conditions could become unstable and diffuse as they move further downstream. to cause the tip vortex core size to increase significantly. helical vortices are inherently unstable. In relating these instability criterion to rotor wakes. the following criterion for vortex stability were suggested:
All rotor wakes in the hover or climb regime experience some sort of tip vortex instability. damping effects were not accounted for. Mutual-Inductance and Long-Wave instabilities. the mode of instability dependent on the form of the disturbance applied and on the helix's own structure.These statements imply that irrespective of vortex core size or helix pitch.
Rotors producing high thrust have large vortex core sizes which result in Mutual-Inductance instabilities becoming predominant. whilst having comparatively small effects on the pitch of the helix.
Increases in rotor thrust have been proven by Swanson et al (1992). causing adjacent vortices to pair up and spin together.
and facilities not available to the author.4
GENERALISED WAKE THEORY
When observing figures 23 through 30. should have very stable wakes.1
Tip vortex mean axial path equation
The vortex axial path equations in current use are:
. existing for over 3 1/2 revolutions. The experimental results of Gray (1972) on single bladed rotors. Such a task would require extensive research. it become obvious that the semi-empirical equations of Landgrebe (1972) and Kocurek et al (1977) are in most instances unable to accurately predict the vortex path. It is therefore apparent that single bladed rotors.4. far more than in any multi-bladed rotor.
This research did not at any stage attempt to define generalised equations for different rotor characteristics or working conditions.
5. the forms of these equations has been identified. show that the axial and radial paths were very smooth and suffer from no major oscillatory motions. Instead. which have a Mutual-Inductance induced disturbance of once per revolution. For these reasons one of the major tasks of this research has been to identify equations which could better represent the mean vortex path.(7)
Helical vortices excited with a perturbation occurring once per cycle (ã/k' / 1) are inherently stable.
However.for Landgrebe's model:
for Kocurek's model:
These equations have provided very good linear approximations for the axial vortex tip path. they over simplify the complex nature of the vortex trajectory. except where the following blade passes over it. 54
They assume the vortex axial path to be linear.
They imply that the rate of change of the gradient along the vortex path to be zero everywhere.
equation (5) provided the better approximation to the mean path..1 was added to the angle to accommodate for è = 0r Constants determined using the least squares method. etc. The characteristics of such a path were discovered to be better modelled by exponential equations..
To determine the coefficients A. The reason for this was that it required two to three terms less than equation (4). It is envisaged that when sufficient wake vortex data becomes available.At such a time and for an infinitesimal amount of time it has a positive value..
They assume the vortices to have no instabilities or fluctuations about their mean path.
They do not account for vortices pairing up and spinning. The two forms selected were: (4)
where: è ƒè A..
For this reason..B.C. providing a smoother mean axial vortex path rather than an equation which tried to follow every data point.C. = = = Wake Azimuth angle relative to blade (Radians) Function Ln(è+1).. general equations accommodating all rotor characteristics and flight conditions may be derived. it became necessary to find new semi-empirical equations which could better represent the vortex axial path..
When these equations were compared with the experimental axial vortex path. the least squares method was used .
Figure 41(b) shows the once-per-blade passage excitation induced by the forming vortex. Hence two equations representing the wake may be required for each set of rotor parameters. only one from each wake has been reproduced in the following figures.4. leaving the Mutual-Inductance instability prominent. These coalesce into one curve.
The important trends to observe in these figures is the meandering. clearly indicating the Mutual-Inductance effect.25 revolutions. the Short-Wave instabilities become affected by the fluid's damping. the axial paths show evidence of Short-Wave.2
Axial path instability criterion
Each of the wakes listed in table 2 have been individually analysed to determine the instabilities in the axial path of the vortices and how these became affected by the introduction of axial flow. Mutual-Inductance and Long-Wave instability can also be seen. the coefficients of the equation. Mutual-Inductance and Long-Wave instabilities. Both forms of instability appear to become much more erratic after the vortex has been in existence for more than 1.
The maximum number of terms necessary to provide a reasonable mean path using equation (5) has been determined to be between three and five.In pure hover conditions. and the meandering about the mean path. From the analogies described in section 5. The individual vortex filaments of each wake were fitted with their mean path curve. as axial flow is introduced into the flow.3 of this presentation. the mean path curve. Figures 36(b) through 40(b) show more clearly the Short-Wave instability which in most instances appears to grow as the vortex moves downstream. As the axial flow is increased. plotted as a function of the azimuth angle. These include the axial vortex path data. the axial paths of the tip vortices cross over each other. Typical values of these can be seen in the figures of the following section.
. Due to the large number of filaments produced. although also affected by the damping. followed by a plot of the meandering about their mean path.
5. This was defined as the ratio between the difference of the actual axial vortex position and the mean axial path to the rotor radius.
Figure 36(b) : Meander of vortex about mean axial path.
.Figure 36(a) : Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.
Figure 37(a) : Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.
Figure 37(b) : Meander of vortex about mean axial path.
Figure 38(a) : Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.
Figure 38(b) : Meander of vortex about mean axial path.
.Figure 39(a) : Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.
Figure 39(b) : Meander of vortex about mean axial path.
Figure 40(a) : Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.
Figure 40(b) : Meander of vortex about mean axial path.
Figure 41(a) : Axial wake geometry and mean axial path.
Figure 41(b) : Meander of vortex about mean axial path.
such as: (1) (2) (3) (4) The unstable path of the radial vortex path. did not model some of the important characteristics of the vortex radial path. exponential equations were the better suited.
In selecting the equation which could better represent the radial vortex path. The two forms selected were: (9)
. The interactions and pairing between adjacent vortices.5. The effect of induced axial flow in the wake to the radial vortex path.3
Tip vortex mean radial path equation
The tip vortex mean radial path equations in current use are: (6)
for Landgrebe's model:
for Kocurek's model:
These equations.4. although providing a good first order exponential approximation to the radial paths of the vortex filaments. The trajectories of each individual blade tip vortex.
As for the axial equations it is hoped that the coefficients may in future be determined as functions of rotor parameters and flying conditions. When comparing the meander of the paths in pure hover with those experiencing axial flow.
The behaviour of the vortices radially shows evidence of all three types of instabilities.4.where: è ƒè A. Long-Wave instabilities could observed in figures 31(a) through 33(a). As before the meander was defined as the ratio between the difference of the actual radial vortex position and the mean radial path to the rotor radius.
.. However for the present work the least squares method was used to find the mean path for each individual vortex filament. both Short -Wake and MutualInductance were observed to be present. 1 was added to the angle to accommodate è = 0r Constants determined using the least squares method.
5. both showed evidence of quasi-stable Short-Wave instability. requiring only two or three terms to give the smoothest mean path. where adjacent vortex filaments interact and spin about one another. the Mutual-Inductance appeared to be heavily damped. all vortex filaments for each of the wakes listed in table 2 were analysed and only one from each wake was included in the figures which follow.B.4
Radial path instability criterion
As for the axial component of the path. compared with equation (9) which required five to six terms. The Short-Wave instability was also damped but maintained in an almost quasi-stable state..C. the mean radial path curve and equation. These figures contained the radial vortex path. = = = Wake Azimuth angle relative to blade (Radians) Function Ln(è+1). and their meander about the mean path.
When the meandering about the mean path was studied. plotted as a function of azimuth angle. However. The form of the exponential equation chosen was equation (10).
Figure 42(b) : Meander of vortex about mean radial path.Figure 42(a): Radial wake geometry and mean radial path.
Figure 43(b) : Meander of vortex about mean radial path. 66
.Figure 43(a) : Radial wake geometry and mean radial path.
Figure 44(b) : Meander of vortex about mean radial path.Figure 44(a) : Radial wake geometry and mean radial path.
Figure 45(b) : Meander of vortex about mean radial path.Figure 45(a) : Radial wake geometry and mean radial path. 68
Figure 46(b) : Meander of vortex about mean radial path. 69
.Figure 46(a) : Radial wake geometry and mean radial path.
Figure 47(b) : Meander of vortex about mean radial path.Figure 47(a) : Radial wake geometry and mean radial path. 70
The individual axial vortex trajectories of figures(31-33) revealed that adjacent vortices paired up and began to spin about a common centre.1 CONCLUSION
The overall aims of this research have been successfully accomplished. differing from the established notion of the generalised equations that the transition occurred instantaneously. Their axial trajectories crossed over each other between one and one-eighth and one and one-third revolutions of the blade after being generated. marked by the forked shape in the graph approximately three quarters of a revolution after generation. This has greatly assisted in reaching the following conclusions about rotor blade tip vortex in the hovering flight conditions9. The radial paths crossed over each other for the first time between two thirds and three quarters of a revolution of the blade after being generated. Modifications to the smoke filament visualisation technique to view rotor tip vortices were successful.Chapter
6. The axial component of the blade tip vortex path exhibited a smooth transition from its trajectory immediately after being generated. allowing for the individual tracking of each blade tip vortex core along its path. In the combined axial path (figures 27-30).
These conclusions were made for wakes generated by a four-bladed rotor. The radial component of the blade tip path exhibited a region of scatter approximately three quarters of a revolution after generation. to that after the following blade passed over it.' 71
. The facility to analyse each blade tip vortex path has allowed the reconstruction of each tip vortex trajectory (figures 31-33) and for the combined path of all blade tip vortices (figures 23-30). a different number of blades may cause the events mentioned here to occur at different 'ages. The individual radial vortex paths of figures (31-33) revealed that the scatter seemed to be attributed to the pairing up of adjacent vortices. and for the second time almost one revolution later. the tip vortex could take one of two distinct trajectories.
A criterion was thus formulated for the tip vortex path stability of various rotor wakes as follows: 1) All blade tip vortices generated by rotors experiencing hover or axial flow could be affected by one or more forms of instability. which could cause the tip vortex to become more unstable. Mutual-Inductance instabilities where the number of oscillations per cycle are less than the pitch of the helix. When the meandering of these paths about their mean trajectories (defined by the selected exponential equations) were analysed. three forms of instabilities were found in helical vortices: Short-Wave instabilities where the number of oscillations per cycle are very high. and Long-Wave instabilities where successive turns of the vortex pass within the distance of one radius from each other. to the extent of suppressing the instability completely or maintaining it in a quasi-stable state. Increased thrust in the rotor caused the tip vortex radius to increase. different forms of instabilities were discovered. causing some of the vortices to combine and spin in unison. all three instabilities were significantly affected by fluid damping. All forms of instability could be affected by fluid damping. However. Tip vortices produced by very heavily loaded rotors are affected by all types of instabilities.
.The non-symmetrical characteristics observed in the tip vortex paths were not modelled by the generalised equations of Landgrebe and Kocurek. These three types of instability could be discovered in the tip vortex paths studied. In the theoretical studies of Betchov (1965) and Widnall (1972). Such over-simplification in these generalised equations suggested further work be done on selection of an exponential type equation which could better follow the tip vortex radial and axial paths. Rotors producing high thrust cause the Mutual-Inductance instabilities to predominate. This caused the vortex paths to oscillate about a mean axial or radial path in a quasi-stable state until the vortex core became large enough to cause it to diffuse.
As tip vortices move downstream their core size grows.
. causing instabilities to arise. Tip vortices generated by single bladed rotors experience a Mutual-Inductance disturbance of once per revolution. giving rise to a very stable helical vortex pattern.
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