AERODYNAMICS - 2019/0

Module code: ENG3167

Module Overview

Third year module in Aerospace Engineering.

The module is lecture and tutorial based and continues to develop the understanding of aircraft aerodynamics and design started in ENG2089 and ENG2091 by concentrating on the prediction of lift in incompressible flow, the characteristics of laminar and turbulent boundary layers, compressibility effects in subsonic and transonic flow, and the impact of these topics on the design of aircraft in civil aviation.

Module provider

Mechanical Engineering Sciences

Module Leader

ROBINS Alan (Mech Eng Sci)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 6

JACs code: H400

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Module Availability

Semester 1

Prerequisites / Co-requisites

Completion of the progress requirements of Level HE2, Aerospace Engineering

Module content

Indicative content includes:

Incompressible wing theory - Stream function, velocity potential, source, sink, vortex and doublet flows; thin airfoil theory, the Kutta condition, classical theory for symmetrical and cambered aerofoils; Prandtl's lifting-line theory, finite aspect ratio wing theory, downwash and induced drag.

Boundary layer theory – viscous flows, laminar boundary layer, transition, turbulent boundary layer.

Compressible subsonic flow – subsonic similarity theory, critical Mach number transonic flight.

Aircraft design - History, wing design, aircraft design for high subsonic Mach number flight.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting
School-timetabled exam/test IN-SEMESTER TEST (40 MINS) 20
Examination EXAMINATION (2 HRS) 80

Alternative Assessment

Coursework to replace test.

Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate understanding of scientific principles, the ability to adapt and apply those principles to specific calculations and the ability to describe aspects of aerodynamic phenomena and aircraft design. The class test demonstrates the ability to perform a specific calculation and interpret its results.

Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:


  • Examination (Learning outcomes 1-5)                2 hours     (80%)

  • In-semester test (Learning outcome 1)              40 mins     (20%)  

  • Coursework as an alternative to the class test for summer reassessment       (20%)



Formative assessment and feedback

Verbal feedback and discussion is provided during tutorial classes

Written feedback is provided on the class test

Feedback is also provided via material on SurreyLearn

Module aims

  • To provide an understanding of methods for predicting lift in incompressible flow and in supersonic flow, including the effects of finite aspect ratio.
  • To provide a general appreciation of the aerodynamics of transonic flow and understanding of means of estimating the extent of the transonic regime for any particular streamlined body.
  • To provide an introduction to laminar and turbulent boundary layers and their importance in determining drag on an aircraft.
  • To bring these strands together in a broad discussion of the design of subsonic, civil aviation aircraft.
  • To provide an introduction to laminar and turbulent boundary layers and their importance in determining drag on an aircraft.
  • To bring these strands together in a broad discussion of the design of subsonic, civil aviation aircraft.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
001 Understand and be able to apply theories for predicting lift on finite aspect ratio wings in incompressible flow (SM1b/m, SM2b/m, EA1b/m) KC
002 Understand the physics of laminar and turbulent boundary layers and the prediction of viscous drag (SM1b/m, SM2b/m, EA3b/m) KC
003 Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the underlying theoretical basis of the methods used (SM1b/m) K
004 Be able to predict the onset of compressibility effects and be aware of the general features of wing aerodynamics in the transonic regime (SM1b/m, SM2b/m, EA4b/m) KC
005 Understand and be able to apply this knowledge to the general design of subsonic, civil aircraft (EA4b/m, D1, D2) KC

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Overall student workload

Independent Study Hours: 102

Lecture Hours: 38

Tutorial Hours: 10

Methods of Teaching / Learning

The learning and teaching strategy is designed to develop subject knowledge through theory, applications and worked examples. The module content is delivered through lectures, tutorial classes and SurreyLearn material.

The learning and teaching methods include three hours of lectures per week for ten weeks and one hour of tutorials per week for ten weeks, together with eight hours of revision classes. Related material is provided on SurreyLearn

48 contact hours, 102 hours independent study, total 150 hours learning time

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list

Reading list for AERODYNAMICS : http://aspire.surrey.ac.uk/modules/eng3167

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Aerospace Engineering BEng (Hons) 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Aerospace Engineering MEng 1 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2019/0 academic year.