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Non-linear flutter


Fleming, Edward Richard (1960) Non-linear flutter. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology.


The problem of two degree of freedom flutter in the presence of structural non-linearities is investigated. The specific problem chosen for investigation is that of bending-torsion flutter of a two-dimensional airfoil in a supersonic flow. The Kryloff-Bogoliuboff assumption of nearly sinusoidal response with slowly varying amplitude and phase is made and aerodynamic piston theory is used throughout the analysis.

Formulas for flutter limit cycles are developed in terms of general structural non-linearities. Necessary and sufficient conditions are developed for the existence of stable flutter limit cycles in the case of an airfoil with torsional stiffness. Several numerical examples of this case are given including a case which exhibits flutter for large disturbances but is stable at all airspeeds for small disturbances.

An analog computer investigation of flutter dependence on initial conditions is given.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Engineering and Applied Science
Major Option:Aeronautics
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Fung, Yuan-cheng (advisor)
  • Caughey, Thomas Kirk (co-advisor)
Thesis Committee:
  • Unknown, Unknown
Defense Date:1 January 1960
Record Number:CaltechETD:etd-12082005-133349
Persistent URL:
Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:4862
Deposited By: Imported from ETD-db
Deposited On:09 Dec 2005
Last Modified:26 Dec 2012 03:12

Thesis Files

PDF (Fleming_er_1960.pdf) - Final Version
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