Experimental Study of the Tonal Trailing-Edge Noise Generated by Low-Reynolds Number Airfoils and Comparison with Numerical Simulations
Pr. M. ROGER - École Centrale de Lyon - Directeur
Pr. V.V. GOLUBEV - Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Co-directeur
Pr. Y. GERVAIS - Université de Poitiers - Rapporteur
Pr. R. MANKBADI - Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Rapporteur
Pr. S. MOREAU - Ecole Centrale de Lyon - Examinateur
The tonal trailing-edge noise generated by transitional airfoils is a topic of interest because of its wide area of applications. One of them is the Unmanned Air Vehicles operated at low Reynolds numbers which are widely used in our everyday life and have a lot of perspectives in future. The tonal noise reduction will increase the survivability and effectiveness of the devices in military field. Moreover it will enlarge the range of civil use and minimize noise pollution. The effective noise reduction is needed and therefore the complete understanding of the tonal noise generation process is necessary. Despite the fact that investigation of the trailing-edge noise was started since seventies there are still a lot of details which should be explained.
The present work is dedicated to the experimental and analytical investigation of the tonal noise and is a part of the collaboration project between Ecole Centrale de Lyon and Embry-Riddle Aerospace University. The aim is to conduct an exhaustive experimental characterization of the acoustic and aerodynamic parameters of the trailing-edge noise and to produce a data base which can be used for further numerical simulations conducted at Embry-Riddle Aerospace University.
A symmetric NACA-0012 airfoil and a slightly cambered SD7003 airfoil at moderate angles of attack (varied from -10o to 10o) were tested in an open-jet anechoic wind tunnel of Ecole Centrale de Lyon at moderate Reynolds numbers (0.6x105 < Rec < 2.6x105). Measurements of the wall pressure and far-field acoustic pressure in different configurations allowed to observe the ladder-type structure of the noise signature, to determine which side produced tones and to distinguish the role of the acoustic feedback loop. Additional post-processing techniques such as time-frequency analysis showed the existence of several regimes (switching regime, one-tone regime and multiple-tones regime) of noise emission. The bicoherence analysis showed that there are non-linear relationships between tones.
The investigation of the role of the separation area by hot-wire anemometry and flow visualization techniques showed that the separation bubble is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for the noise generation. Moreover the location of the bubble is also important and should be close enough to the trailing edge. Furthermore the linear stability analysis of accompanying numerical simulation results showed that the Tollmien-Schlichting waves transform to the Kelvin-Helmholtz waves at the separation area.
An analytical prediction of the tone levels in the far-field was done using Amiet’s model based on the assumption of perfectly correlated sources along the span. The wall-pressure measurements close to the trailing edge were used as an input data. The comparisons of the predicted levels and measured ones gave a good agreement.
After analysis of all results the following description of the tonal noise mechanism is proposed. At some initial point of the airfoil the Tollmien-Schlichting instabilities start. They are traveling downstream and continued to Kelvin-Helmholtz waves along the shear-layer of the separation bubble. These waves reach the trailing edge, scatter from it as acoustic waves, which move upstream. The acoustic wave amplifies the boundary layer instabilities at some frequencies for which the phases of both motions match and creates the feedback loop needed to sustain the process.