Flight test of HYBRiX multicopter with a fully automatic mission using Tower APP

First flight tests of full automatic flight plan from take off to landing. We are using Tower. You can see the whole process on the video: flight plan generation, combustion engine start, drone arming from the tablet and mission launch.

I hope you like it!
Jose Luis Cortes

Views: 989

3D Robotics
Comment by Chris Anderson on July 3, 2016 at 5:05pm

Impressive, but loud! Any way to get it quieter?

Comment by Gary McCray on July 3, 2016 at 5:51pm

Hi Jose,

Getting a gas / generator to work efficiently enough to power an electric quadcopter is a great accomplishment.

The losses in the power train (engine and generator) are very hard to get to the point where this pays off.

Apparently you have done so - Congratulations!

When I looked into this, no commercial generator could handle it They weren't efficient enough and generally weighed too much).

I suspect the key to your success is that you designed and built your own high efficiency, light weight generator or alternator from scratch.

To me that seemed the only possible way forward.

It will be interesting to compare the performance and capability of this to the gas engine shaft driven variable pitch drives like the new Curtis Youngblood TDP-MR based on his Manta Ray.

Assuming you still do carry a battery, I suppose you could throttle down and operate in stealth mode at least for a little while.

And of course, a tuned muffler might help.

Best Regards,


Comment by Jose Luis Cortes on July 4, 2016 at 12:26am

@Chris Anderson, Thanks, yes, we are working on a tuned pipe to get a bit more power and we are planning to put a silencer.

@Gary McCray, yes it have a small batteries but only to handle a emergency landing because it can not re-start in flight. I have just written Curtis to get some information about his airframe.

Comment by Giovanni Esposito on July 4, 2016 at 1:35am

What engine are you using? 20-26cc? sounds smaller and pretty lean... and already at high rpm with no payload... 

Comment by Jose Luis Cortes on July 4, 2016 at 2:01am

this airframe weight!, in this test probably about 15kg. this small and powerful engines need revving above 10000rpm to get some power. but this engine are not revving near maximum and not at maximum throttle. one of the next tests will be a test of 1hour or 1,5hours at maximum payload, 20kg 

Comment by Rob_Lefebvre on July 4, 2016 at 6:17am

Cool to see.  What's the maximum flight speed going to be like?  That looked about 5 m/s?  So the basic vehicle weight is 15kg?  What size props is it using, 29"?

The noise levels are going to be one of those things...  You could design a quieter muffler system, but it will reduce power and increase weight.  There's no free lunch.

The thing about gas power is that it's not going to be used for everything.  It's for serious work.  You don't see people complaining about the noise of a chainsaw, concrete saws, etc. etc.  Even things like housing construction, there are things like electric power nailers available, but serious tools are Paslode gas powered nailers.  These industries cannot function with electric powered tools.  Gas power will play a similar role in serious UAV applications.  Battery power will only be used in light-duty applications for at least the next 10 years until that "revolutionary battery technology" finally arrives.  

In fact, I'd say that as UAV technology has finally matured and they are put to work, gas power will be even more important than it has been in the past. 

Jose, if you need help getting the engine speed under better control, especially at part load, we should talk.  I have a lot of experience with automotive EFI programming.  You can't properly control idle speed with throttle alone.

Comment by Jose Luis Cortes on July 4, 2016 at 7:01am

Hi Rob, 

Yes, probably 5m/s (default waypoint speed), propellers of this unit are 25", empty weight is about 12kg.

it is weighty airframe and our experience is that it get speed very easily, at 20m/s we see not too much pitch angle.

About noise, you are right, there are a lot of gardening tools with similar engines and similar mufflers and it seems not problem. the problem appears when you compare with electric ones. 

About EFI, I send you a private message.

Comment by Digital Wings on July 5, 2016 at 6:38am
I have been patiently waiting for more updates! I love this product. Cant wait till your commercial version :-)
Comment by Marc Dornan on July 6, 2016 at 6:17am

Love it. A serious work tool to be sure.


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