The Wing-in-Ground Effect Concept Technology Demonstrator (WIGE CTD) project is a joint venture between Advanced Aerosystem Technologies Pty Ltd and RMIT University, aiming to design, validate and build a prototype recreational vehicle to fly two passengers over a distance of 500km at approximately 120km/h. The WIGE vehicle will fly very close to the surface, usually water, taking advantage of ground effect to transport passengers with a greater lift/drag ratio, and thus greater fuel-efficiency than conventional aircraft. Following preliminary design, an aerodynamic analysis of the vehicle was performed using wind tunnel testing and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). This paper describes the methods used for wind tunnel testing and CFD modelling of the WIGE CTD design. Results obtained using the two approaches are compared with the aim of validating the CFD model and the techniques used in both wind tunnel and CFD modelling for use in future analyses. In addition to the aerodynamic analysis, a basic CFD prediction of the maximum hydrodynamic drag experienced during take off was attempted using a simple model of the WIGE vehicle hull. This result is required in order to ensure that the aquatic take off required by WIGE vehicles was possible for the design. Concurrently, the feasibility of using a general-purpose CFD solver like Fluent to analyse hull performance was also evaluated through this aspect of the investigation.

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