Missile Aerodynamics

Course #ME3205

Est.imated Completion Time: 3 months


Potential flow, thin-airfoil and finite wing theories via vortex lattice methods. Linearized equations, Ackeret theory, Prandtl-Glauert transformations for subsonic and supersonic wings. Planform effects. Flow about slender bodies of revolution, viscous crossflow theory. Modern numerical flow analysis tools will be utilized to investigate realistic compressible flow problems over missile and air vehicle shapes.

Included in degrees & certificates

  • 118
  • 608
  • 613


  • Undergraduate Fluids
  • by consent of instructor

Learning Outcomes

1. Understand the fundamental mechanism enabling the generation of lift on airfoils, finite-span wings and bodies of revolution

2. Understand the fundamental mechanisms causing friction and pressure drag on bodies in viscous flow

3. Understand the mechanism causing induced (vortex) drag on finite-span wings

4. Understand the origin and method of derivation of the equations describing viscous flow, inviscid incompressible and compressible flow, and inviscid irrotational flow

5. Be able to apply potential flow modeling to the determination of the flow over two-dimensional bodies using source/sink/vortex superposition

6. Be able to derive the linearized equations for subsonic and supersonic flow

7. Be able to analyze the flow over slender airfoils in subsonic and supersonic flow

8. Understand the mechanism causing wave drag in transonic/supersonic flight

9. Be able to analyze the flow over missiles using the slender wing/body theory

10. Be able to develop expressions for the lift, drag, and aerodynamic stability of missiles

11. Understand the nature of laminar and turbulent flow and the reasons causing transition from laminar to turbulent flow

12. Be able to derive equations modeling turbulent flow using the Reynolds-averaging concept

13. Understand the nature of attached and separated flow and the reasons causing flow separation

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Academic Calendar

  •  09 Jun 2023

    Spring quarter last day of classes

  •  13 Jun 2023

    Spring quarter final examinations begin

  •  15 Jun 2023

    Spring quarter final examinations end