Full-scale investigation of aerodynamic characteristics of a typical single-rotor helicopter in forward flight

Dingeldein, Richard C Schaefer, Raymond F

As part of the general helicopter research program being undertaken by the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics to provide designers with fundamental rotor information, the forward-flight performance characteristics of a typical single-rotor helicopter, which is equipped with main and tail rotors, have been investigated in the Langley full-scale tunnel. The test conditions included operation of tip-speed ratios from 0.10 to 0.27 and at thrust coefficients from 0.0030 to 0.0060. Results obtained with production rotor were compared with those for an alternate set of blades having closer rib spacing and a smoother and more accurately contoured surface in order to evaluate the performance gains that are available by the use of rotor blades having an improved surface condition. The wind tunnel results are shown to be in fair agreement with the results of both flight tests and theoretical predictions.

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