Dataset on airflow resistance of wings from owls and non-silently flying birds

Published: 7 December 2023| Version 2 | DOI: 10.17632/ndcndtstcf.2
Thomas Geyer, Thomas Windisch, Christoph Fritzsche, Ennes Sarradj


The dataset contains measured airflow resistance values from prepared wings of owls and other, non-silently flying birds. It consists of a comma-separated values (CSV) file named "dataset_wingpermeability.csv" that contains 149 rows and six columns. The first row contains the header and the remaining 148 rows contain the raw data. The first column specifies the species (e.g. Barn owl, Tawny owl, Long-eared owl, Common buzzard, Eurasian sparrowhawk or Common pigeon) as a string format. The second column specifies the corresponding binomial name (e.g. Tyto alba, Strix aluco, Asio Otus, Buteo buteo, Accipiter nisus or Columba livia) as a string format. The third column contains the number of the wing, which have simply been numbered consecutively from 1 to 39 as integer data type. The fourth column specifies whether it is a left wing or a right wing, again as a string value. The next column contains the measurement position on the wing, which have been numbered from 1 to 4 as integers. The final column then contains the measured flow resistance R in Pa s/m³ as floating point values. The csv-file uses Unicode (UTF-8) character encoding and the fields are separated by commas. The corresponding figure is a Portable Document Format (PDF) file named "wingpermeability_boxplot.pdf". It shows the measured air flow resistances contained in the dataset as a box plot. It can be seen that, on average, the airflow resistance of the owl wings is significantly lower than that of the wings of the non-silently flying birds. A third figure ("measurement_positions.pdf") shows a photograph of one of the Barn Owl wings as an example, indicating the four the measurement positions on the pressure side of the wing.


Steps to reproduce

Measurements of the static airflow resistance were performed according to ISO 9053 at up to 4 locations on 39 prepared wing specimen belonging to six different bird species. This included three owl species known for their quiet flight and three other bird species. The airflow resistance is calculated as the ratio of the static pressure difference across the prepared wing, which was measured using differential pressure transducers, to the volume flow through the sample, which was provided by a small radial fan. The measurement device contained a special measurement head that allowed to perform in-situ measurements. This measurement head has an inner diameter of 20 mm and is equipped with a soft, flow-impermeable sealing. The data were recorded using a National Instruments data acquisition module, and calculations were performed using in-house software.


Brandenburgische Technische Universitat Cottbus-Senftenberg


Acoustics, Permeability, Porosity, Airflow, Owl, Flight Control