Date of Award

Summer 2006

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering


Aerospace Engineering

Committee Chair

Dr. Hany Nakhla

Committee Member

Dr. Eric Perrell

Committee Member

Dr. Axel Rohde


Flaps are used to increase an airplane's lift and to adjust its stability and maneuverability. This study shows an application of STAR-CD, a commercial computational fluid dynamics (CFD) software, to an investigation of the dynamic effects of flap deflection on the lift, drag and moment coefficients, as well as on the location of the center of pressure. For this study, a plain flap was modeled with a moving mesh and was attached to a NACA 0012 airfoil and a wing of a general aviation aircraft for a 2D and 3D investigation, respectively. In addition, the flap deflection rates were varied to investigate their effect on the flow field and the airfoil's stability characteristics. The results from the analyses were ultimately used to prove that commercial CFD software is a viable option to investigate the stability and control characteristics of an aircraft.