What is VORTEX GENERATOR? What does VORTEX GENERATOR mean? VORTEX GENERATOR meaning - VORTEX GENERATOR definition - VORTEX GENERATOR explanation.
Source: Wikipedia.org article, adapted under https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/ license.
A vortex generator (VG) is an aerodynamic device, consisting of a small vane usually attached to a lifting surface (or airfoil, such as an aircraft wing) or a rotor blade of a wind turbine. VGs may also be attached to some part of an aerodynamic vehicle such as an aircraft fuselage or a car. When the airfoil or the body is in motion relative to the air, the VG creates a vortex, which, by removing some part of the slow-moving boundary layer in contact with the airfoil surface, delays local flow separation and aerodynamic stalling, thereby improving the effectiveness of wings and control surfaces, such as flaps, elevators, ailerons, and rudders.
Vortex generators are most often used to delay flow separation. To accomplish this they are often placed on the external surfaces of vehicles and wind turbine blades. On both aircraft and wind turbine blades they are usually installed quite close to the leading edge of the aerofoil in order to maintain steady airflow over the control surfaces at the trailing edge. VGs are typically rectangular or triangular, about as tall as the local boundary layer, and run in spanwise lines usually near the thickest part of the wing. They can be seen on the wings and vertical tails of many airliners.
Vortex generators are positioned obliquely so that they have an angle of attack with respect to the local airflow in order to create a tip vortex which draws energetic, rapidly moving outside air into the slow-moving boundary layer in contact with the surface. A turbulent boundary layer is less likely to separate than a laminar one, and is therefore desirable to ensure effectiveness of trailing-edge control surfaces. Vortex generators are used to trigger this transition. Other devices such as vortilons, leading-edge extensions, leading edge cuffs, also delay flow separation at high angles of attack by re-energizing the boundary layer.
Examples of aircraft which use VGs include the Embraer 170 and Symphony SA-160). For swept-wing transonic designs, VGs alleviate potential shock-stall problems (e.g., Harrier, Blackburn Buccaneer, Gloster Javelin).