Basic Air Data 8mm Pitot Tested in Wind Tunnel

We've been told that the Basic Air Data, DIY oriented 8 mm probe performed well within a wind tunnel 

You can read the article about the wind tunnel here. Details within this pdf report

Views: 936

Comment by Jason Franciosa on March 24, 2017 at 7:19pm

I would love to see a poll of people who use arduplane with no airspeed sensor and if they have ever had any issues. With your study showing the normal digital airspeed sensor is quite horrible, and I know many users do fly arudplane with great success without an airspeed sensor. Even event38 sells many systems with no airspeed sensor without issue. I wonder how much of a necessity it truly is for many applications?

Comment by Jose.L.Jr on March 25, 2017 at 2:55am

Hi Jason.
The study is not mine nor Basic Air Data.
You can discuss with the authors eventually.
For me, the relevant aspect is that one BAD probe worked in an acceptable, under many aspects, way.

Comment by Georacer on March 25, 2017 at 3:53am

Hello Jason,

I am one of the authors of this report.

Even though your questions are not directly related to our findings, I can tell you that tuning your airplane to fly at its lower end of the flight envelope (for endurance) without an airspeed sensor is a bad idea. Banking out of the wind is likely to throw into a stall.

Whereas if you had an airspeed sensor the autopilot would be more likely to read the drop in relative airspeed and throttle up or dive.

Still, ArduPlanes are flying out there without airspeed sensors all the time, but I guess they need to sacrifice some efficiency for the sake of safety.

Comment by Muhammad Al-Rawi on March 25, 2017 at 5:23am


I have one plane with an airspeed sensor and a couple without. 

In the planes without sensors, I have to set my cruise throttle higher than what the aircraft could be cruising at. Otherwise when flying down a strong wind, they become unstable and lose altitude. In some cases they have stalled.

The one plane I have with an airspeed sensor flies great in strong winds. I can set the cruise throttle lower which really helps in terms of efficiency. I've never had any real problems with the airspeed sensor, which is the digital 3DR sensor + pitot tube. It's been awhile since I've flown that plane but when getting it dialed in I do seem to remember the airspeed data being rather noisy. 


Thank you for your work in this paper. I'm having a read right now. 

Comment by Jason Franciosa on March 25, 2017 at 5:43am

Fair point, I am hoping stall recovery is something arduplane will see soon as it is a very critical failure of arduplane at the moment. If a stall does happen, it's 100% crash rate once the plane goes nose down. I'm hoping this fatal state can be fixed soon, especially with all the recent work on the merging of arducopter and arduplane

Comment by Marc Dornan on March 25, 2017 at 6:10am
Jose-- where can we buy the kit for the BAD pitot tube. Your assembly videos show a basic kit in what looks like consumer packaging. But I see no web store.
Comment by Jose.L.Jr on March 25, 2017 at 6:11am

@ Georacer Thank you for your post!

Comment by Jose.L.Jr on March 25, 2017 at 6:42am

@Marc  No kit available. Everything necessary to make your own Pitot should be available for free download on the website/Github. If is not the case let me know. Different people have made Pitots/ADCs.

Comment by John Arne Birkeland on March 25, 2017 at 9:14am

On a calm day it should be possible to use GPS speed to calibrate the airspeed sensor, as long as the error is relatively linear.

Comment by Jay Case on March 27, 2017 at 1:21pm

Quick question: would the inside surface of a pitot tube affect readings? For example, a printed pitot tube (depending on print orientation) would be rough from the layer resolution.


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