On the use of filament-based free wake panel methods for preliminary design of propeller-wing configurations

André F.P. Ribeiro*, Carlos Ferreira, Damiano Casalino

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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With distributed propulsion and electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft on the rise, fast and accurate methods to simulate propeller slipstreams and their interaction with aircraft components are needed. In this work, we compare results obtained with a filament-based free wake panel method to experimental and previously validated numerical data. In particular, we study a propeller-wing configuration at zero angle of attack and the aerodynamics of the blade-resolved slipstream interaction with the wing. We use a prescribed wake on the wing and a free wake on the propeller, which greatly accelerate the computations. Results indicate that, while forces are overpredicted due to the inviscid nature of the panel method, the free wake is able to capture the slipstream deformation and shearing with remarkable success. We find that a filament-based free wake panel method can be a useful tool for propeller-wing interaction in preliminary aircraft design.

Original languageEnglish
Article number108775
Number of pages12
JournalAerospace Science and Technology
Publication statusPublished - 2024


The authors are grateful to Ramon Duivenvoorden for providing the geometry description of the propeller and wing simulated herein, along with the experimental results. We are also very thankful for the help of Massimo Gennaretti in integrating the far wake effects in the unsteady Bernoulli equation.


  • Aerodynamics
  • eVTOL
  • Slipstream deformation
  • UAV
  • Wake interactions


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