Active Control of Natural Tollmien-Schlichting Waves using DBD Plasma Actuators

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Understanding, predicting and controlling laminar to turbulent transition is of great interest due to the wide range of practical applications where transition is significant. Generally, turbulent flow has an order of magnitude higher skin friction. Fuel savings of up to 25% would be possible for a large commercial aircraft if laminar flow could be maintained over the wings. At low to moderate Reynolds number several types of airfoils show the development of Tollmien-Schlichting (T-S) instabilities. These T-S waves become the dominant cause of transition which is further amplified by an adverse pressure gradient.