A modified strip analysis has been developed for rapidly predicting flutter of finite-span, swept or unswept wings at subsonic to hypersonic speeds. The method employs distributions of aerodynamic parameters which may be evaluated from any suitable linear or nonlinear steady-flow theory or from measured steady-flow load distributions for the underformed wing. The method has been shown to give good flutter results for a broad range of wings at Mach number from 0 to as high as 15.3.

The principles of the modified strip analysis may be summarized as follows: Variable section lift-curve slope and aerodynamic center are substituted respectively, for the two-dimensional incompressible-flow values of 2 pi and quarter chord which were employed by Barmby, Cunningham, and Garrick. Spanwise distributions of these steady-flow section aerodynamic parameters, which are pertinent to the desired planform and Mach number, are used. Appropriate values of Mach number-dependent circulation functionsare obtained from two-dimensional unsteady compressible-flow theory.

Use of the modified strip analysis avoids the necessity of reevaluating a number of loading parameters for each value of reduced frequency, since only the modified circulation functions, and of course the reduced frequency itself, vary with frequency. It is therefore practical to include in the digital computing program a very brief logical subroutine, which automatically selects reduced-frequency values that converge on a flutter solution. The problem of guessing suitable reduced-frequency values is thus eliminated, so that a large number of flutter points can be completely determined in a single brief run on the computing machine. If necessary, it is also practical to perform the calculations manually.

Flutter characteristics have been calculated by the modified strip analysis and compared with results of other calculations and with experiments for Mach numbers up to 15.3 and for wings with sweep angles from 0 degrees to 52.5 degrees, aspect ratios from 2.0 to 7.4, taper ratios from 0.2 to 1.0, and center-of-gravity positions between 34% chord and 59% chord. These ranges probably cover the great majority of wings that are of practical interest with the exception of very low-aspect-ratio surfaces such as delta wings and missile fins.

This program was released by NASA through COSMIC as LAR-10199. The italicized text above is from the official NASA release.

- Go to the page of references for the Flutter program.
- Download flutter.zip, containing the original source code, the source code converted to modern Fortran, and two test cases.