DIY/ Engineering Excitement over the past few months!

When I first got interested in UAVs I took the advice of some of the forum members here and equipped myself with arduino based systems....but I'm a crazy engineer and this approach didn't last long before I had convinced myself I could make a better job of all this if I started from scratch...luckily I also managed to convince a friend of mine who specialises in electronics!

 

I'm an aeronautical and mechanical engineer, or I will be when I graduate! Resultantly I love all the spinning bits and the frames etc!

I've been a RC enthusiast for a while now and my original intention was to get a Radian glider flying autonomously, but just like the electronics, I swiftly became interested in a more exciting idea which I would have to custom build.

 

The result was the Talon airframe, which is the first in a series of aircraft with three goals in mind:

  1. Vertical Take off and Landing (VTOL).
  2. High Sprint Speed.
  3. Long Loiter time in slow flight.

 

As you can see in the picture above, it is currently rather experimental and a little crude. The target of high speed flight has been completely ignored for now. Concessions to low speed loiter come in the form of modified Radian Glider wings and VTOL is achieved by wing and motor tilt.

I'll write more detailed posts about Talon on my website, www.universalair.co.uk - where the code will also be released open source.

It is controlled by the boards my friend has designed which we call "Forebrain" - the processor and "Seraphim" - the sensors.

 

Here is a brief video of a suspended test, as you can see, the pitch axis whilst hovering is the least damped and worst aerodynamically actuated so it has been hard work getting it stable, I'm currently running code verification on a quadcopter before returning to Talon.

 

 

Will probably post soon about the quadcopter too, looking forward to hearing any interesting comments/ ideas about the aircraft!

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Developer
Comment by Jason Short on July 23, 2011 at 4:52pm
It seems like you'll have quite a bit of latency in your pitch control which will make it hard to control your pitch rate leading to oscillations when in any bit of wind. Anyway looks exciting!
Jason
Comment by Kirby on July 23, 2011 at 6:33pm

Love the idea!  Can't wait to see how it flies not only in hover, but also regular flight.  This is a pretty ambitious project that I would love to see succeed.

Comment by A. Rafael Ptacnik on July 23, 2011 at 9:47pm
Nice Bike what frame is it ?
Comment by Leon on July 24, 2011 at 12:09am

I really like this design! This is very simple, credible. It should be great!

 

Leon.

Comment by Henry Fletcher on July 24, 2011 at 12:56am

@ Jason, Yes, I think you may be homing in on the root of the problem there. With it suspended as it is there is a pendulum type resonance that will probably not be present in free flight, but what makes it so sensitive is that the short distance between the control flaps and the centre of mass means you don't get much torque about the axis (and there isn't much damping unlike in the yaw axis!)

 

I have made provision for adding a tail if needed, but I am hoping to keep it simple and more like a flying wing...reduces the number of servos and or linkages needed.

 

@ Rafael It's a Specialized Stumpjumper Elite 07 (with loads of modifications to make it more suitable for jumping and some Downhilling)

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