Project Details


Birds use powered flight as their main mode of locomotion, allowing efficient exploitation of their habitat and long-distance migration. Flight costs (power consumption) can be described by a flight mechanical model, which generally results in a U-shaped function of speed. Until recently it has been difficult to measure the aerodynamic power output and thereby testing the validity of the flight mechanical model. However, by using high-speed motion capture of body and wing movement it is possible to estimate flight power, as well as by measuring, using Particle Image Velocimetry, the kinetic energy added to the wake by the flapping wings. In this project, different approaches of estimating power required to fly at different speeds will be applied to different species, with the overall aim to carefully evaluate flight dynamics and efficiency of bird flight. A key component of the project is to explore the effect of body and wing shape on flight costs in a few bird, and possibly also bat, species. The experiments will mainly be carried out in the Lund University low-turbulence wind tunnel, which is equipped with state-of-the-art techniques appropriate to conduct the research.
Effective start/end date2021/09/01 → …

UKÄ subject classification

  • Ecology
  • Biophysics