Low-Reynolds-number flows and their control

Low-Reynolds-number flows are getting much attention these days due to the continuous increase in the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or micro-air vehicles (MAVs). They operate in a Reynolds number regime similar to that found in most natural flyers. However, these man-made platforms are far from achieving the agility and maneuverability of natural flyers. We want to understand how we can manipulate the flow over the wings of an UAV or a MAV to achieve high maneuverability. Our goal is to study such flows for different initial and boundary conditions with the help of optical diagnostics and understand the role of vortex dynamics.

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