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An Aeroservoelastic Flapping Flexible Wing Model August 2, 2010

Posted by thelifeexamined in Code.
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An aeroservoelastic flapping flexible wing model has been created from experimental data obtained at the University of Florida to support the ideal of reproducible research.  Please cite the paper below if you choose to use this model.

Love, R. and Lind, R. “Experimentally-Based Aeroservoelastic System Identification and Feedforward Control of Flexible Flapping Wings“, AIAA Atmospheric Flight Mechanics Conference, 2010.

The model takes inputs of flapping amplitude and flapping frequency to produce a simulation of the aeroservoelastic flapping based on experimental results.  Download the zip file and run “WingModel.m” in Matlab.   Feel free to try your own inputs for flapping amplitude and flapping frequency (it is initially set for +/-35 degree amplitude and 20Hz)!  Please note that work is still in progress to model the exact flexible deformations.  Please feel free to contact me if you have any issues after you’ve tried to figure it out yourself.  Enjoy!

Update 8/26/2010: A newer, higher fidelity model which captures the wing flexibility has been formulated.  Look for this to be published in the near future!


SIGVIZ: Time History, Fourier Transform and Wavelet Transform Analysis September 30, 2009

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The Matlab Code SIGVIZ provides a quick way to visualize the Time history, Discrete Fourier Transform and Wavelet Transform (using the Morlet wavelet).  This code should be useful for the analysis of systems with time and frequency dependent dynamics.

Initial investigations of flapping wing vehicles have demonstrated several characteristics in which wavelet analysis might prove useful.   These include the presence of time-varying vortices, unknown time and frequency dependent lags in the system, and structural resonance while flapping.  These features were demonstrated in the paper Time-Frequency Analysis of Aeroelastic Deflections of Flapping Wings (R. Love, R. Lind, AIAA ASM 2009).


1. Download Matlab files: simpleexample.m and sigviz.m into the same directory.

2. Run simpleexample.m (Example: simple 20Hz sinusoid) to understand the effects of changing the various input parameters.

3. Modify simpleexample.m to include your input signal and corresponding time vector.

Starting an ornithopter community January 22, 2009

Posted by thelifeexamined in How to Use this Website, Introduction.
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This blog has been great as an information accumulator, but it does not provide as much interaction as I’d like the ornithopter research community (i.e. YOU!) to be able to have.  In addition, trying to make it a community tool limits how much I can use it personally.  As a result I set up a social network for ornithopters research at Ning.

How Ornithopters.ning.com Can Help You

This network will be a place where people can get their questions answered, instantly find active researchers in the community, and find information relevant to their research.  It will jump start those new to researching ornithopters thereby helping the community as a whole.

Ning allows people to have their own profiles and link in their own pictures and videos, giving you an instant platform to share the major results of your research with those in the community (ie: those who really care!).  Please take a second to create a profile and start helping build the community by inviting friends and colleagues and posting information!

At Ning, I’ll make blog entries that are akin to “introductions” for given subject areas related to ornithopters.  If any of you would like to contribute an article at Ning or have suggestions for subject material please get in touch.

How Ornithopters.wordpress.com Can Help You

This blog will be refocused to share information I find relevant to the ornithopter community, the work going on at the University of Florida, my perspectives and background, as well as continuing to summarize some of the information resources.

I look forward to meeting you at Ning!

How to Use this Website July 31, 2008

Posted by thelifeexamined in How to Use this Website.
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This website was built to be a tool to facilitate research and collaboration and to more effectively leverage Web 2.0 tools for the ornithopter community (ie YOU and I).  Here’s the bottom line on how to use it:

Keep Up to Date on Technical Papers for Flapping Wings

If you want to find my version of the newest papers online about flapping wings (hand sorted for relevance), see my Google Reader Shared Page.  Otherwise you can just obtain the raw feed as seen in the box to the right.

Titles available from my literature review are summarized in the Literature Review Directory.  Please contact me to request an invite to share the papers through the Box.net account.

Find Out Who’s Doing/Done Research

Authors are listed for all papers in the Literature Review Directory.  There is also a People Directory that has been compiled of people working in the field.  Our team is listed here.

See Ornithopter News

Thanks to Feed Informer and Highbeam you can see what attention that ornithopters are currently getting from major news sources with this feed.  See the box on the bottom right for most recent results.

Be Overwhelmed by Interesting Ornithopter Information

Check out the Friend Feed site for a summary of all updates.

Contact Me

I’m on Facebook at (Robert Love, University of Florida) or on LinkedIN at Robert Love. You can reach me by e-mailing ornithoptersresearch@gmail.com.  I’d appreciate any feedback you may have, especially on how to make this site more useful!

Help Build the Tools

Add yourself as a friend and work with me to bring together Videos from YouTube, Photos from Flickr, and Links from Twine that are relevant to ornithopters.   I have tentatively started an ornithopters wiki as a less authoritative version of the wikipedia page.  If you have thoughts on using a different wiki platform let me know!

For any more details see the Join Up! page.  If you are more interested in the hobby side of ornithopters, please see the Ornithopter Zone website and get involved with their already thriving community through their forums.

Online Ornithopter Applications! April 26, 2008

Posted by thelifeexamined in Introduction.
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This is the beginning of the applications age on the internet. Therefore I will be using various reputable online tools (which you hopefully are already using) to allow you access to the information in a focused manner. Eventually hopefully this will be an excellent technical resource and easy way for you to access all the information you need as well as helping guide you to the tools that are actually useful! I cannot build such a tool alone, so I will be using tools that allow YOU to join in.  Here is a summary of (most) of the tools used on this website.


Twine is a beta release website that leverages the semantic web. It is close to a wiki in that you can contribute links freely. I will be organizing links which you can add to at the Ornithopter site at Twine. If you leave me a comment with a link, I will put it on this page or you can add it yourself.


The Box.net account is for anyone and contains the extensive literature review I’ve collected as well as potentially some research data.  If you’d like to “collaborate” (ie share the papers or data) please e-mail me or leave a comment below with your contact information and I’ll send you an invite.


A video has now been posted under the username “ornithoptersresearch” of a flapping wing moving at 20Hz. I will be favoriting other technical research videos in the future. If you have a video to share let me know!


Flicker has now been incorporated with some more photos to come. Check out the “ornithoptersresearch” photostream.  A more easily accessible way to view them can be found here.  If you have an account with pictures of ornithopters let me know!

Social Profiles: Facebook/LinkedIN

Feel free to add me as a friend at (Robert Love, University of Florida) or if you are present or former colleague at LinkedIn (Robert Love)

Google Reader+Engineering Village for Technical Papers

RSS feeds obtained from Engineering Village have been obtained for certain search terms related to ornithopters.  I ensure the content of the papers is relevant and then share links to the new papers here.

Feed Informer+High Beam for News

I have created a customized news source RSS feed with Feed Informer utilizing High Beam to plug in to most major news sources.  I have three feeds set up with them currently: ornithopter, ornithopters, and flapping wing.

Friend Feed

Friend Feed is a stream of all of the content that will be posted on this website (YouTube, Flickr, Ornithopthers Blog Posts, New Papers from Google Reader, and Links from Twine). So basically, if you would like a chronological feed of all items organized here, go to the Friend Feed site.

My contact information for the purposes of this website is: ornithoptersresearch@gmail.com. If you know of any other blogs you would like me to subscribe to that are relevant to ornithopters, please let me know.

Why Another Ornithopter Site? February 28, 2008

Posted by thelifeexamined in Introduction.
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Ornithopters.org is a great website for RC and model ornithopters and the Wikipedia Ornithopters page will give you the broad introduction, so why have another website?

1. To Present the Latest Technical Information from Multiple Sources on Ornithopters and Flapping Wings

2. To Bring Together Researchers, Students and Companies Interested in Ornithopters

3. To Bring Together Prior Technical Information in an Accessible Format, thereby Promoting Scientific Research about Ornithopters

I hope you will find the site useful; feel free to share your ideas for the site or any information you might have to improve it! Thanks!