Determination of control-surface characteristics from NACA plain-flap and tab data

Ames, Milton B Sears, Richard I

The data from previous NACA pressure-distribution investigations of plain flaps and tabs have been analyzed and are presented in this paper in a form readily applicable to the problems of control-surface design. The experimentally determined variation of aerodynamic parameters with flap chord and tab chord are given in chart form and comparisons are made with the theory. With the aid of these charts and the theoretical relationships for a thin airfoil, the aerodynamic characteristics for control surfaces of any plan form with plain flaps and tabs may be determined. A discussion of the basic equations of the thin-airfoil theory and the development of a number of additional equations that will be helpful in tail design are presented in the appendixes. The procedure for applying the data is described and a sample problem of tail design is included. The data presented and the method of application set forth in this report should provide a reasonably accurate and satisfactory means of computing the aerodynamic characteristics of control surfaces.

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