Bat Aerodynamics Research Project

Project Name Funding Body Industrial Partners Academic/Research Partners Duration
Bat aerodynamics N/A N/A University of Manchester Faculy of Life Sciences 2008-2011

Wings are the most obvious adaptation bats have for powered flight and differences in wing morphology are known to correlate with flight behaviour. However, the function(s) of ancillary structures such as the ears and tail, which may also play an important role during flight, are less well understood. The ULg Wind Tunnel, in collaboration with the University of Manchester Faculty of Life Sciences is carrying out a research project aimed at furthering the understanding of the role of such structures.

To date, two series of wind tunnel tests have been carried out. The first aimed at characterizing the effect of ear size and angle on the aerodynamic forces of the bat body. The object of the second series of tests was to investigate the effect of the tail membrane on the aerodynamic forces and moments acting on the complete bat. A different simple model was constructed for each test series.

Different bat models in the ULg wind tunnel