As one of the most crucial part of the unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV), the composite propeller plays an important role on the UUV’s performance. As the composite propeller behaves excellent properties in hydroelastic facet and acoustic suppression, it attracts increasing attentions all over the globe. This paper goes a step further based on this idea, and comes up with a novel concept of “morphing composite propeller” (MCP) to improve the performance of the conventional composite propeller (CCP) to anticipate the improved propeller can perform better to propel the UUV. Based on the new concept, a novel MCP is designed. Each blade of the propeller is assembled with an active rotatable flap (ARF) to change the blade’s local camber with flap rotation. Then the transmission mechanism (TM) has been designed and housed in the propeller blade to push the ARF. With the ARF rotating, the UUV can be propelled by different thrusts under certain rotation velocities of the propeller. Based on the design, the Fluent is exploited to analyze the fluid dynamics around the propeller. Finally, based on the design and hydrodynamic analysis, the structural response for the novel morphing composite propeller is calculated. The propeller blade is simplified and layered with composite materials. And the structure response of an MCP is obtained with various rotation angle under the hydrodynamic pressure. This simulation can instruct the design and fabrication techniques of the MCP.
Fanlong Chen, Qinyu Li, Liwu Liu, Xin Lan, Yanju Liu, and Jinsong Leng, "Design and simulation on the morphing composite propeller (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10164, Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2017, 101640I (Presented at SPIE Smart Structures and Materials + Nondestructive Evaluation and Health Monitoring: March 27, 2017; Published: 10 May 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2258726.5427376534001.
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