2015 Volume 10 Issue 2 Pages 14-00233
This paper discusses similar-scale mechanical models of a thrips wing using microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) piezoresistive cantilevers to quantitatively evaluate bristled wing characteristics. Each cantilever had combs with varying widths and neighboring gaps that were adjusted so that a constant surface area was maintained. The cantilever body was 1,324 × 256 × 5 μm3 in size. An aerodynamic drag force from the airflow applied to the cantilever surface was measured using the fractional resistance change of the piezoresistor due to the cantilever's deformation. The aerodynamic characteristics of each model were evaluated in a wind tunnel with airflow velocities between 1.2 and 5.6 m/s. The experimental results suggest that at a lower comb-width-based Reynolds number that was approximately equal to that of a bristled wing of a thrips, the comb areas of the cantilever act as an airflow suppression due to boundary layer effects, which results in an increased aerodynamic force.