Reciprocity relations in aerodynamics

Max A. Heaslet, John R. Spreiter

Reverse flow theorems in aerodynamics are shown to be based on the same general concepts involved in many reciprocity theorems in the physical sciences. Reciprocal theorems for both steady and unsteady motion are found as a logical consequence of this approach. No restrictions on wing plan form or flight Mach number are made beyond those required in linearized compressible-flow analysis. A number of examples are listed, including general integral theorems for lifting, rolling, and pitching wings and for wings in nonuniform downwash fields. Correspondence is also established between the buildup of circulation with time of a wing starting impulsively from rest and the buildup of lift of the same wing moving in the reverse direction into a sharp-edged gust.

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