Lift and Drag Behaviour of an Inflatable Kite Considering Various Kite Shapes Using 3D CFD Analysis

Fitzgerald, Edward (2010). Lift and Drag Behaviour of an Inflatable Kite Considering Various Kite Shapes Using 3D CFD Analysis Honours Thesis, School of Engineering, The University of Queensland.

       
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Author Fitzgerald, Edward
Thesis Title Lift and Drag Behaviour of an Inflatable Kite Considering Various Kite Shapes Using 3D CFD Analysis
School, Centre or Institute School of Engineering
Institution The University of Queensland
Publication date 2010
Thesis type Honours Thesis
Supervisor Michael Macrossan
Total pages 46
Language eng
Subjects 0913 Mechanical Engineering
Formatted abstract
Kite-surfing is a popular sport that started in the late 1990s that uses a kite to pull a surfer along. A typical kite-surfing inflatable kite is a non-conventional airfoil because of the inflatable bladder that forms the large tubular leading-edge lateral to the wing span. (See Figure 2) The development of these kites has mainly been by ‘trial and error’, whilst little research on the flight behaviour has been done.

Kites have been tested with different aspect ratios (See figure 1) and some benefits and disadvantages have been identified. The different aspect ratio (circumferential distance vs. width) and shape of kites have been the major development and selling feature of kites. The improvement of kite design has led to a merger between the high aspect and low aspect kites to develop a hybrid kite that is recognized to offer benefits from both designs. As the reasoning behind these discoveries is limited, the effects the shape and aspect ratio have on the performance needs to be investigated. Using Ansys and its CFD Fluid analysis, the various kite shapes with different configurations will be modelled and analysed. Performances of the kites will be evaluated by the lift to drag ratio, where ideally performance of the kite can be maximised. Effects of varying angle of attack, aspect ratio, kite size and aspect ratio will all be considered and hopefully some conclusion will be drawn. Overall the research completed using CFD should result in a more in-depth understanding of inflatable surf kite flight characteristics and possibly used as a guide to the improvement in the performance of kites.
Keyword 3D CFD Analysis

Document type: Thesis
Collection: UQ Theses (non-RHD) - UQ staff and students only
 
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