Aerodynamic Characteristics and Plasma Flow Control of Static Hysteresis over an Airfoil at Low Reynolds Numbers

  • Haoyu Chen
  • Long Zhou
  • Xuanshi MengEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Electrical Engineering book series (LNEE, volume 459)


An experimental study is performed to characterize the static hysteresis of the lift and drag on an FX 63-137 airfoil at the chord Reynolds number of \( 1.8 \times 10^{5} \). A long strip of plasma actuator is installed on the upper surface near the leading edge of the airfoil. The purpose of this work is to study the effect of plasma flow control on the static hysteresis of lift and drag at low Reynolds numbers. Pressure measurements are used to determine the surface pressure distribution around the airfoil. Lift and drag forces acting on the airfoil are calculated from the measured pressures and normalized by the chord. The detailed surface pressure distributions over the baseline airfoil reveal that it is the laminar separation bubble (LSB) on the upper surface delays the stall for the forward process of the angles of attack (AOA); while for the backward process of AOA, the flow cannot establish the same laminar separation bubble as the forward process, resulting in the static hysteresis of the lift and drag. The plasma flow control results show that static hysteresis of lift and drag can be reduced by affecting the LSB at low Reynolds numbers.


Low Reynolds number Active flow control Plasma Lift and drag Static hysteresis 



This work is supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 11672245), the National Key Laboratory Research Foundation of China (Grant No. 9140C420301110C42), the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (3102018JCC008), and the 111 Project (B17037).


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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Fluid MechanicsNorthwestern Polytechnical UniversityXi’anChina
  2. 2.Department of AerodynamicsNanjing University of Aeronautics and AstronauticsNanjingChina

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