MVVS 26cc in-flight starter motor

Check out our unique in-flight starter motor for the MVVS 26cc on a custom built Senior Telemaster.

The system is lightweight and robust. Works from a cold start. Works again and again... it is great for extreme long duration flights and vibration free (i.e., no image blur) video or stills while the engine is off. Also, for all those people struggling with gyro drift, you can get a good gyro fix when the engine is off as well.


Cheers from the MotMen UAV team, Newcastle, Australia.

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  • I'm not sure of the work you do in UAVs but one problem a small company faces is how to get the biggest bang for buck. Scaneagle is beyond our financial means. Pneumatic launch system for example. Also Scaneagle doesn't do high resolution imaging; it only does surveillance. For a low cost solution for long distance flights, there is no alternative solution but to switch the engine off if you want to take high resolution images for mapping and the like. It just happens that our solution extends to other arenas. What we have achieved is a robust, lightweight solution for garage boys like most of us, which will produce image quality competitive with the big boys. Now that is smart design! And we get the benefit of other applications thrown in. This more than justifies the solution; it demands it.
  • Just as a link, some time ago, but still interesting esp. regarding engine mount: 

    And the scaneagle carrys cameras, as do other gas powered UAV´s.

    Don´t get me wrong, I like the idea you are implementing, I´m just questioning the reasons...

    The stealth idea is used in the military drones. Here is one I know of that does: Uses a 2 cylinder 3W motor with folding prop...

    Another Idea: Why not use a hybrid propulsion approach? For taking pictures, use a small electric motor with a small battery that is charged by the gas engine that covers the long distances/duration? And you could also sell it as "green" :-)

  • Paul Mather got it right. The key reason for stopping the engine is to get clear photos. We've been trying every which way, and it's the only viable solution in a small UAV which needs to cover long distances (hence electric is out). All this talk about Aerosonde with their engine - they don't carry high resolution imaging packages. They do mostly weather data using small sensor packages immune to vibration. At low revs, vibration is a killer. Having said that, with a good engine like the MVVS, stopping is going to increase air time. You could even program the autopilot to take advantage of thermals between way points on long hauls. And as mentioned earlier the applications are extensive. Take stealth for example: you could fly up high, then glide into the stealth zone, take pictures quietly, fly out and restart the engine. Is that cool or what?
  • Alex,

    the motor system Maynard Hill developed was increadible. It was the key to the atlantic crossing. Everything else would be obtainable today for a few 100$... There is many interesting reading about TAM and his previous projects on the net! He modified 10cc 4 stroke engines to sparc injection and running on lamp oil. The fuel was controlled by a tricky mechanical mechanism. In the end he got a consumption of 57ml per hour!!! 38h running engine... It was the achievement of a lifetime!

  • here's the detail. Not sure if you want to tackle all of his methods, but some do look promising.. Like generator instead of battery..

  • Alex, I think the reason for stopping and starting is to get good IMU data and clear photos...not to extend distance or flight time in this application.
  • Here's the article Link

  • Didn't the fella who passed away a few weeks back use a super tuned carb in his plane that flew across the Atlantic? I'm sure he didn't stop and start the engine, he just used a better engine and carb. His plane wasn't that  big, perhaps 2 meter and it transmittied all sorts of data as it was flying.
  • Cool, what about telemetry data? :)

    I'd be happy to add support to my GCS:

  • That's true. What we do is recalibrate the gyro using accelerometers. It's tricky, but we got reasonable results. To this you add GPS data and horizon data from the infrared horizon detector. So it's all about data fusion.
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