Axially symmetric shapes with minimum wave drag

Max A. Heaslet, Franklyn B. Fuller
Jan 1956

The external wave drag of bodies of revolution moving at supersonic speeds can be expressed either in terms of the geometry of the body, or in terms of the body-simulating axial source distribution. For purposes of deriving optimum bodies under various given conditions, it is found that the second of the methods mentioned is the more tractable. By use of a quasi-cylindrical theory, that is, the boundary conditions are applied on the surface of a cylinder rather than on the body itself, the variational problems of the optimum bodies having prescribed volume or caliber are solved. The streamline variations of cross-sectional area and drags of the bodies are exhibited, and some numerical results are given.

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