Study on Owl Feathers Could Help to Reduce Aircraft Engine Sound

Increased sound pollution could result in various issues like hypertension, hearing impairment, and cardiovascular disorders

The sound of aircraft is quite significant in elevating sound pollution, especially during takeoffs and landings. Some aircraft, during takeoffs and landings, exceed the sound limit of 140 decibels, which could trigger hearing impairment, hypertension, and even cardiovascular disorders. And now, a new study conducted by researchers at the City University of London has suggested a new way by which the sound of aircraft can be reduced considerably.

Revolutionary Owl Feather Study

Scientists led by Professor Christoph Bruecker developed a new type of aerofoil by simulating the owl feather microstructures. According to researchers, owl feather microstructures play a crucial role in helping the birds to hunt in pin-drop silence.

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During the research, scientists mapped the aerodynamic effect on the special filaments at the leading edge of owls. Researchers revealed that these finlets offer these birds increased stability, and it also reduces the turbulence.

"We were surprised that instead of producing vortices, the finlets act as thin guide vanes due to their special 3-D curvature. The regular array of such finlets over the wingspan, therefore, turns the flow direction near the wall in a smooth and coherent manner," said Bruecker, in a recent statement.

Changing the Future of Aircraft Design

This is not the first time that researchers are studying the capability and features of birds to design advanced airplanes. A few months back, another study report had studied barn owls to understand the way in which these aerobic creatures fly smoothly in powerful winds. The research report also gave hope that features of barn owls can be incorporated on future aircraft which will help to develop small aircraft capable to fly even during windy times.

And now with the publication of this new research report, experts believe that this new study report could change the way of future laminar wing design. Further studies may also help researchers to create aircraft that fly silently across the skies.