Research‎ > ‎

Dynamics, Stability & Control of Flapping Wing Robots


Understand the nonlinear dynamics, stability, and control of various biomimetic flapping wing designs featuring
Analysis of wing flexibility
Consideration of wing mass
Non-naïve averaging methods
Primary focus area: determine the influence of wing flexibility on the stability of flapping wing designs and optimal stiffness, mass, and wing loading for aerodynamic performance and stability
Develop robust nonlinear control strategies for this nonlinear, time periodic system across the entire flight envelope

Approach - Multi-fidelity Analysis

Motivation - Bumblebees

exhibits significant chordwise flexibility (2)
Can hover or sustain forward flight at high advance ratios
Maintains trajectory in unsteady wind conditions
Exhibits rapid accelerations and decelerations
Can carry loads exceeding their body weight


Developed full multi-body mathematical model for multiple winged insects/vehicles from first principles and verified the result against other models in the literature
Developed aerodynamic pitching moment predictions based on both unsteady aerodynamic theory and full direct numerical simulation of the incompressible Navier Stokes equations
Implemented a fully coupled open loop flight dynamic solver with multiple aerodynamic models
Tightly coupled Navier-Stokes solver and Euler-Bernoulli beam solver with flight dynamics simulation

Future Work

      Linear stability analysis about equilibrium
Stability analysis using higher order methods
Nonlinear control implementation
Model free control development
James Bluman,
Jun 20, 2016, 6:57 AM
James Bluman,
Jan 8, 2016, 7:52 AM
James Bluman,
Aug 14, 2015, 9:43 AM