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Published September 1, 1980 | public
Journal Article Open

Leading-Edge Flutter of Supercavitating Hydrofoils


This paper presents the results of experiments and analysis of the phenomenon of leading-edge flutter which has been observed to occur for supercavitating hydrofoils. The experiments confirmed the existence of such a single-degree-of-freedom flutter involving chordwise bending and indicated that for long, natural (or vapor-filled) cavities the reduced flutter speed, [formula], was in the range 0.15 to 0.23. Secondary effects observed were the variation with the angle of attack (a minimum flutter speed occurred at 10 deg) and with foil mass ratio. Shorter cavities typically yielded lower flutter speeds due to a complex interaction between the bubble collapse process occurring in the cavity closure region and the unsteady hydrodynamic load on the foil. Finally, a relatively simple theoretical analysis for supercavitating hydrofoils with elastic axes aft of midchord is presented. This linear analysis yields reduced flutter velocities somewhat lower than those observed.

Additional Information

Manuscript received at SNAME headquarters July 17, 1979; revised manuscript received September 20, 1979. The authors are very grateful to a number of people whose help and guidance was invaluable. Discussions with A. J. Acosta and T. Y. Wu were greatly appreciated. Help given by T. Ward, J. Kingan, H. Gabler, H. Hamaguchi, V. Sodha, and C. Hemphill is gratefully acknowledged. Finally, we are most appreciative of the support provided by the General Hydrodynamic Research Program of the David W. Taylor Naval Research and Development Center under Contract No. N00014-75-C-0379.


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