January 14, 2015
German Aerospace Center has used a real-flight technique in which especially bright lasers emitted from test flights are projected onto the wings of specially equipped Airbus 320 aircraft. This makes it possible to illuminate, record and study the behavior of the water droplets that move along the wings, something that could be key to improving the design and construction of more efficient airplanes.
The images captured by two high-speed cameras make it possible to show these drops of water – and therefore the flow of air that pushes them – moving, which in turn allows offering more precise and realistic data than those of the simulation. The technique, called Particle Image Velocimetry, also allows researchers to compare actual airflow in flight with that of simulations to adjust the latter and find out if the computer models are well calibrated.
via Lasers will help make airplanes quieter and more efficient.
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