1 April 2014 Energy harvesting for self-powered aerostructure actuation
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This paper proposes and experimentally investigates applying piezoelectric energy harvesting devices driven by flow induced vibrations to create self-powered actuation of aerostructure surfaces such as tabs, flaps, spoilers, or morphing devices. Recently, we have investigated flow-induced vibrations and limit cycle oscillations due to aeroelastic flutter phenomena in piezoelectric structures as a mechanism to harvest energy from an ambient fluid flow. We will describe how our experimental investigations in a wind tunnel have demonstrated that this harvested energy can be stored and used on-demand to actuate a control surface such as a trailing edge flap in the airflow. This actuated control surface could take the form of a separate and discrete actuated flap, or could constitute rotating or deflecting the oscillating energy harvester itself to produce a non-zero mean angle of attack. Such a rotation of the energy harvester and the associated change in aerodynamic force is shown to influence the operating wind speed range of the device, its limit cycle oscillation (LCO) amplitude, and its harvested power output; hence creating a coupling between the device’s performance as an energy harvester and as a control surface. Finally, the induced changes in the lift, pitching moment, and drag acting on a wing model are quantified and compared for a control surface equipped with an oscillating energy harvester and a traditional, static control surface of the same geometry. The results show that when operated in small amplitude LCO the energy harvester adds negligible aerodynamic drag.
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Matthew Bryant, Matthew Bryant, Matthew Pizzonia, Matthew Pizzonia, Michael Mehallow, Michael Mehallow, Ephrahim Garcia, Ephrahim Garcia, "Energy harvesting for self-powered aerostructure actuation", Proc. SPIE 9057, Active and Passive Smart Structures and Integrated Systems 2014, 90570E (1 April 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2046408; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2046408

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