Design of Shape Memory Alloy Actuated Deformable Airfoil for Subsonic Flight


Article Preview

Aerodynamic surfaces for subsonic flight vehicles are usually designed primarily with the cruise condition in mind. With this objective in mind, the design of these aerodynamic surfaces, which usually exist as airfoils on the vehicles, are in general suboptimal for actual situation because they must be used for takeoff, landing, and maneuver in addition to cruise condition [1]. Therefore, it would be always desirable to design an airfoil with the ability to adapt to its current flow condition and alter its shape to remain the efficiency at any speed. The present paper reports a design of an airfoil with NACA 0012 profile which aims to deform the airfoil shape under the actuation the shape memory alloy (SMA) actuators embedded in it. The SMA actuators design to alter the aerodynamic lift and drag in a subsonic flow. The feasibility of the design is examined and discussed in the light of the change in lift to drag ratio and the power budget of the actuation.



Key Engineering Materials (Volumes 334-335)

Edited by:

J.K. Kim, D.Z. Wo, L.M. Zhou, H.T. Huang, K.T. Lau and M. Wang




R.C.K. Leung et al., "Design of Shape Memory Alloy Actuated Deformable Airfoil for Subsonic Flight", Key Engineering Materials, Vols. 334-335, pp. 1105-1108, 2007

Online since:

March 2007




[1] J. D. Anderson, Jr.: Aircraft Performance and Design (McGraw-Hill International Editions, Singapore 1999).

[2] L. F. Campanille and D. Sachau: J. Intelligent Mater. Sys. Struct. 11 (2000), p.215.

[3] L. J. Garner, L. N. Wilson, D. C. Lagoudas and O. K. Rediniotis: Smart Mater. Struct. 9 (2000), p.673.

[4] O. K. Rediniotis, L. N. Wilson, D. C. Lagoudas and M. M. Khan: J. Intelligent Mater. Sys. Struct. 13 (2000), p.35.

[5] Y. L. Lau, R. M. C. So and R. C. K. Leung: J. Fluids Struct. 19 (2004), p.1061.