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Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur

Fundamentals of Theoretical and Experimental Aerodynamics

Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur and NPTEL via Swayam


This course is introductory in nature and expected to impart firsthand knowledge of Aerodynamics. It combines fundamentals of theoretical and experimental aspects of Aerodynamics without making it too intense and detailed. After successful completion of this course the student should be well prepared for more advanced courses in the discipline.With ever increasing use of Aerodynamics in a wide gamut of applications like drones, UAVs, micro air vehicles, automobile aerodynamics, sports aerodynamics, industrial aerodynamics, defence and space, it is essential to understand the basics or quickly refresh the fundamental concepts of Aerodynamics while working on any of the above applications. This course exactly fulfils that need.I would like to once more emphasize that the primary intention of this course is to create a familiarity about Aerodynamics. It is not intended to prepare someone for research but induce the excitement and enthusiasm to pursue it further.PRE-REQUISITES: NillINTENDED-AUDIENCE:Aerospace Engineering/ Mechanical EngineeringINDUSTRY-SUPPORT:This course should suit as an introductory Aerodynamics course for new recruits in organizations like National Aerospace Laboratory (NAL), Defence Research and Development Laboratory (DRDL), Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), Aeronautical Development Establishment (ADE), Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and private/ multinational aerospace firms like Boeing, Airbus etc. It should be useful for IAFengineers and pilots as well.


Week 1:Aerodynamics-relevance and applications ,Atmosphere ∙ Flow velocity, pressure, skin friction ,Generation of aerodynamic forces and moments on an aircraft , Aircraft external shape and surfaces
Week 2:Eulerian and Lagrangian perspectives of flow, Fluid Kinematics, Conservation equations of mass, momentum and energyWeek 3:Inviscid and viscous flows- potential flow, boundary layer, Compressible and incompressible flow, Laminar and turbulent flowWeek 4:Airfoil geometry, Pressure distribution at an angle of attack (α), Aerodynamic centre, centre of pressure, Cl- α, Cl-Cd, Cm-α curves, Flow separation and stall, High lift devices, multi element airfoils, Laminar and turbulent flow over airfoil, Trailing edge noiseWeek 5:Finite wing geometry, Control surfaces on wing, horizontal and vertical stabilizers, Airfoil and finite wing aerodynamics- a comparison, ∙ Delta wing, high angle of attack aerodynamics, Unsteady effects in airfoils and wings- effect of gust, sudden change in angle of attack, Pitch, heave, flapping, leading edge vortex, dynamic stallWeek 6:Full Potential Equation and its application, Shock and expansion wave theory, Supersonic flow past a flat plate, Flow through a converging diverging nozzle, Transonic and supersonic flow past airfoil, Shock wave boundary layer interaction, Shock tube, Preliminary concepts of hypersonic flowWeek 7:Computing aerodynamic flows- main steps and resources, Panel and Vortex Lattice Method, Euler and Navier Stokes equations-IWeek 8:Euler and Navier Stokes equations-II, What information can be extracted from numerical solutions, Applications of computational aerodynamics- few examples
Week 9:Wind Tunnel: experimental tool in Aerodynamics, Types of wind tunnels, Wind Tunnel design basics, Similarity analysis, Scaling of wind tunnel models, Safety issues in wind tunnel handling
Week 10:Flow visualization techniques, Model design and fabrication, Model positioning system, Measurements involving mechanical sensors, Pressure ports, Pitot static tubes, Mechanical balances
Week 11:Measurements involving electronic transducers, Electronic pressure gages, Strain gage based balances, Data Acquisition System and software, Measurement uncertainty
Week 12:Velocity measurement using Particle Image Velocimetry, How wind tunnel and associated instrumentation are used for performing aerodynamic studies- few examples, ∙ Quick revision of course content & doubts clarification

Taught by

Prof. Arnab Roy



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