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A Reassessmemt of Rotor Hovering Performance Prediction Methods

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Recent test results from rotors operating at higher blade loadings with larger numbers of blades have pointed up the inadequacies of some of the simpler conventional methods for computing hover performance. As a result, the validities of the classical methods have been reassessed, and a series of improvements of the methods have been introduced. In this paper, the predictions of several methods are compared with representative full scale test data. The discrepancies which arise are shown to increase with blade loading, tip Mach number and number of blades. It is proposed that a major part of the discrepancy is due to wake contraction in close proximity to the rotor. Photographs of model and full scale flow patterns including high speed photographs of the details of wake formation and wake trajectories are used to illustrate the point. Finally a method for considering the effects of flow contraction on hovering performance is presented and it is shown that including this effect promises to provide improved accuracy in the prediction of hover performance.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Sikorsky Aircraft, Stratford, Connecticut

Publication date: 1968-04-01

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  • The Journal of the American Helicopter Society is the world's only scientific journal dedicated to vertical flight technology. It is a peer-reviewed technical journal published quarterly by AHS International and presents innovative papers covering the state-of-the-art in all disciplines of rotorcraft design, research and development. (Please note that AHS members receive significant discounts on articles and subscriptions.)

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