Brad Hughey
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  • Conroe, TX
  • United States
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Brad Hughey's Groups

Brad Hughey's Discussions

North Central Illinois (Rockford) Area Test Field Wanted

Started this discussion. Last reply by Gary McCray Jan 12, 2013. 19 Replies

My electric multicopter is 25 feet wide from propeller tip to tip.  Testing it in my driveway is no longer a viable option.  Mechanical and electrical failures have been eliminated, and now it's time…Continue

The Case for Large-Scale Electric Multicopters

Started this discussion. Last reply by Stephen Wuest Jun 15, 2015. 93 Replies

This discussion thread is a follow-on to several conversations I've had with people in the forums who are particularly interested in the aerodynamics of vertical take off and landing (VTOL)…Continue

Tags: cyclic, control, quadcopter, quadrotor, multicopter

The Most VTOL Fun You Can Have for 20 Bucks - Syma 107

Started this discussion. Last reply by Brad Hughey Nov 10, 2011. 3 Replies

I bought my son one of these electric model R/C copters for his 9th birthday, and I'm embarrassed to say I've played with it more than he has.  It is an indoor flyer, remarkably stable, and while the…Continue

Tags: Syma, S107, Amazon, Helicopter, R/C

Soft Start Throttle

Started this discussion. Last reply by Brad Hughey Aug 10, 2011. 2 Replies

For me it seems APM system leaves about 20% of the first throttle travel as dead slack, then suddenly springs forth with about 20% duty cycle in the PWM signal.  This probably isn't an issue for most…Continue

Tags: start, soft, response, Throttle

 

Brad Hughey's Page

Latest Activity

Brad Hughey replied to Marcos Costa's discussion 30lbs Thrust Quadcopter - Motor and Propeller
"Thank you for your kind words, Chris. Yes, I have thought about this. Control authority is all about how much of the total thrust you can change and how fast. Consider the case of a conventional cyclic-pitch-controlled helicopter as an example. A…"
Jan 9
Brad Hughey commented on John Arne Birkeland's blog post Just a normal day in the park
"Here is a link to Dr. Pounds' excellent paper on the subject: http://eprints.qut.edu.au/33767/1/33767.pdf Based on rather rigorous mathematical analysis of quadrotor dynamics, his conclusion is "...the system exhibits an unstable…"
Sep 6, 2015
Brad Hughey commented on John Arne Birkeland's blog post Just a normal day in the park
"Just for the record, I am convinced that commercialized manned electric multicopter flight isn't just possible - it is inevitable. I too applaud the intrepid souls who are pioneering this area. They are heralding the future. However, if you…"
Sep 6, 2015
Brad Hughey commented on John Arne Birkeland's blog post Just a normal day in the park
"Here's another example of the fact that there's more to a large-scale electric multicopter design than merely having enough thrust vectors to add together. The basic problem is rotational inertia, of both the propellers and the airframe.…"
Sep 5, 2015
Brad Hughey replied to Jochem de Vries's discussion Reading material for multirotor systems?
"Hello and Welcome Jochem, This will get you started: Basic Rotorcraft Aerodynamics The dynamics of control are well spelled out here: Paul Pounds Modelling and Control... My favorite reference text: Dr. Leishman's _Principles of Helicopter…"
Jun 25, 2015
Stephen Wuest replied to Brad Hughey's discussion The Case for Large-Scale Electric Multicopters
"In the model airplane community, it is accepted that 1/3 of the lift of a fixed airfoil comes from the bottom, and 2/3 from the top. Propellers are treated as a type of airfoil. It has been interesting to read your comments on the design of…"
Jun 15, 2015
Gary McCray replied to Brad Hughey's discussion The Case for Large-Scale Electric Multicopters
"Hi Brad, Sorry I didn't get back to you sooner, major problems completely unrelated to "drones" (rebuilding a previously sold house after mortgagee abandoned it). Please feel free to email anytime direct to grmccray@yahoo.com I…"
May 31, 2015
Michael Duffy replied to Brad Hughey's discussion The Case for Large-Scale Electric Multicopters
"Here is another example of a man carrying multi-rotor I just found: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qlfAMjcPtI&app=desktop "
May 27, 2015
Michael Duffy replied to Brad Hughey's discussion The Case for Large-Scale Electric Multicopters
"There have been a few examples of large man carrying multi-rotors in the media: http://www.theverge.com/2015/5/27/8665479/canadian-smashes-world-record-for-longest-hoverboard-ride "
May 27, 2015
Brad Hughey replied to Michal Rus's discussion Quadcopter with down facing motors/props
"Thanks. I just saw this. Yes, Dr. Pound's conclusion is that a center of mass just slightly above the lifting plane yields the best dynamic control configuration. The primary mission for the engineer is to make design compromises based not on…"
May 26, 2015
Brad Hughey replied to Brad Hughey's discussion The Case for Large-Scale Electric Multicopters
"Hi Gary, Thank you for your kind words. I have not been very active the last two years due to budget and personal considerations, like the logistics of moving from Illinois to Texas. But I have far from given up. In fact, I am more convinced that…"
May 24, 2015
Gary McCray replied to Brad Hughey's discussion The Case for Large-Scale Electric Multicopters
"Hi Brad, I see you recently responded to another blog and I was just wondering if you had been doing any more development on your (large) multicopter. One of the things I have observed is that as our large fixed pitch multicopter propellers get…"
May 22, 2015
Brad Hughey replied to Thomas Stanley-Jones's discussion 16 Motors?
"The theory is all summed up here. Assume a FM of .60 to get started. Your mileage may vary. Lifting With Propellers - The Real Math Deal"
May 20, 2015
Andreas replied to Brad Hughey's discussion The Case for Large-Scale Electric Multicopters
"Although  making a mechanically self stable multirotor  helps the flight controller to perform less corrections, a thing that would ultimately traduce in less load on the motors and a little more flight time. Thats the case of the s800 of…"
Sep 23, 2014
Brad Hughey replied to Kate's discussion Flight time vs. battery life
"Thank you, Gary.  You're too kind."
Jun 3, 2014
Brad Hughey replied to Kate's discussion Flight time vs. battery life
"Steady forward flight will yield better efficiency compared to hovering as far as energy consumption rate.  As others have stated, doing aerobatics will cause your power usage to increase.  I think the 2:1 maximum thrust to hover thrust…"
Jun 3, 2014

Profile Information

About Me:
I am a personal aviation entrepreneur dedicated to the proposition that flying is the ultimate expression of freedom. An electronics engineer by education and early career, I was active in the data storage industry for a long time. However, passed my private pilot check ride 4 days after my 17th birthday and never lost that love of flying.
Please tell us a bit about your UAV interest
It's ironic that coming from the data storage industry, my job was to preach the benefits of having redundancy and fault-tolerance. "If it moves, it fails."

Regular helicopters rely on achieving and maintaining mechanical perfection for reliability. What if they were designed more like enterprise storage systems?

THEY CAN BE.
Hometown:
Chicago Suburbs

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Comment Wall (6 comments)

At 5:38pm on July 29, 2011, Julie Macfarlane said…

I have about 30 years experience as an EE and have all the neat tools  :)

Either thats a very small driveway or you are out of control  :)

Must be a blast to fly!

At 5:52pm on July 29, 2011, Brad Hughey said…

It's a full-sized (3-car garage) driveway and the eCopter has a 30 foot rotor array span.  I guess it might look like a model, but it's a single-passenger FAA Part 103-compliant (ultralight) human-carrying multi-rotor electric VTOL aircraft.  It will be a blast to fly, but there are some unique tribulations with ground-effect aerodynamics that I am very close to solving with the help of a little automation.  :-)

At 3:59pm on March 5, 2012,
T3
William Premerlani
said…

Hi Brad,

I am not sure what you mean by your question, "how fast is fast enough". Could you elaborate? If you are talking about sampling rate, tests that I have done show that 8000 samples/second is about right.

Bill

At 5:58pm on October 2, 2012, R. D. Starwalt said…

Methinks the same. Friends we are now.

-=Doug

At 7:24am on January 14, 2014, thomas lewis said…

This is a excellent platform to develop for a affordable and safe flying machine.I'm guessing you could use some of the same software and hardware,that was developed for the hobby,commercial multicopter market with a little tweeking.The design affords itself to,being able to fly on fewer than all the motors and a ballistic chute,making it,really safe .A slow,low altitude,affordable VTOL aircraft,I love it,good luck,I have no doubt you will succeed.Hopefully we will see more and more software,hardware being developed.

At 12:10pm on January 24, 2014, Gary McCray said…

Hi Brad, I foolishly started a Blog about optimal Multicopter design and it has kind of gone ballistic.

I consider you one of my main mentors in this area with your very solid grounding of the real issues and aerodynamics to which they are subject.

I'd very much appreciate it if you might take a look at the blog and possibly insert some of your own perspective.

http://diydrones.com/profiles/blogs/some-multicopter-design-thoughts

It could use a serious grounding and benefit from your insight.

Best Regards,

Gary

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