Computational analyses of tail fin configurations for a sounding rocket

S. Sai Sankalp, Vansh Sharma, Abhyudaya Singh, Aneesh Surendra Salian, G. Srinivas

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Missiles and sounding rockets usually deviate from the trajectory due to unstable roll. Fins with cant angles are generally used to provide a rolling moment in sounding rockets and missiles to minimize the instability. Inducing a rolling moment also leads to an increase in the rocket motor’s power consumption due to the rise in drag, so inducing an optimal rolling moment with a minimal increase in drag is a crucial design criterion. It is crucial to maintain the similarity parameters while testing a scaled-down model in a wind tunnel. Therefore, computational fluid dynamics (CFD) is more efficient than extensive wind tunnel tests. In this paper, three-dimensional, incompressible simulations were performed on different models of sounding rockets using commercial CFD package fluent. The simulations were performed with the help of k- ϵ standard turbulence model. The results obtained were tabulated and graphically represented, and the trends of aerodynamic coefficients like Cd and Cm were analyzed. The purpose of this study is to analyze the dependency of aerodynamic coefficients on different fin configurations with emphasis on the cant angle. This study will be helpful to researchers designing a sounding rocket and help in maximizing apogee. The experimental and computational results show a favourable comparison. The results will show a particular configuration of fin having greater Cm/ Cd which yields in a greater rolling moment and least amount of drag.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)233-246
JournalAerospace Systems
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 06-2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Computers in Earth Sciences
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


Dive into the research topics of 'Computational analyses of tail fin configurations for a sounding rocket'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this