This is a study that was performed as part of a research project done in collaboration with the Walloon Region in Belgium. The objective was to demonstrate the feasibility of CFD calculations of a full helicopter using FINE™/Open software.
The geometry was the helicopter drone SARAH 4.0 from FLYING-CAM, composed of a main rotor, a fuselage and a tail rotor. This composition requires the modeling of 2 rotation axes, with different rotational speeds. The modeling of forward flight conditions of a helicopter is quite challenging for the CFD solver, due to the complex cyclic blade pitching movement of the main rotor. This rigid pitching motion was taken into account by using the dedicated fluid-structure capabilities of FINE™/Open, which includes mesh deformation in the main rotor domain.
The picture shows the helicopter geometry. The animations show the vertical component of the displacement on the rotor main blades and the static pressure in a cutting plane through the main rotor and through the tail rotor.