Experimental validation and evaluation of a coupled twist-camber morphing wing concept




Lobo do Vale, José
Raffaelli, John
Suleman, Afzal

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Applied Sciences


A morphing wing concept allowing for coupled twist-camber shape adaptation is proposed. The design is based on an optimized thickness distribution both spanwise and chordwise to be able to morph the wing sections into targeted airfoil shapes. Simultaneously, the spanwise twist is affected by the actuation. The concept provides a higher degree of control on the lift distribution which can be used for roll control, drag minimization, and active load alleviation. Static deformation and flight tests have been performed to evaluate and quantify the performance of the proposed mechanism. The ground tests include mapped actuated wing shapes, and wing mass and actuation power requirements. Roll authority, load alleviation, and aerodynamic efficiency estimates for different configurations were calculated using a lifting line theory coupled with viscous 2D airfoil data. Roll authority was estimated to be low when compared to a general aviation aircraft while the load alleviation capability was found to be high. Differences between the lift to drag ratio between the reference and morphing wing configurations are considerable. Mass and actuation energy present challenges that can be mitigated. The flight tests were used to qualitatively assess the roll control capability of the prototype, which was found to be adequate.



camber morphing, twist morphing, load alleviation


Lobo do Vale, J., Raffaelli, J., & Suleman, A. (2021). “Experimental validation and evaluation of a coupled twist-camber morphing wing concept.” Applied Sciences, 11(22), 10631. https://doi.org/10.3390/app112210631