3D Robotics

Tri/Quadcopter awesomeness

[There was a bunch of very cool Tri/Quadcopter stuff on the RCG blogs today. Here's a sampling:]

Above: A very cool custom tricopter with a Trex body so you can tell which direction is forward. Check out the post for details on the pro quality pan-tilt camera mount.

And check this next one out. Did you know that you can make a Mikrocopter amphibious? This video is mindblowing. It starts underwater, but keep watching:

Finally, a "best of" video of Mikrocopters as camera platforms. How many Hollywood movies or TV shows have you seen recently that used quads rather than cranes?

Both of those quad videos are from this post, which is great introduction to Mikrocopters. Worth reading the whole thing.

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  • Moderator
    Ok, Roger that. I was trying to wrap my mind around commercial bl motors and it wasn't sinking in. You're talking a very specialized setup. I was thinking that I could use an electic motor (bl preferred) and have the motor/electronics in a sealed compartment and use a series of chambers with sealed shaft housings to minimize water intake due to possible leaking seals. I've also read about using submerged bilge pumps as thusters. We're still early in the project so ideas are welcome.
  • Brian,

    While i didn't design the motors, I have taking them apart to have a look. The Brushless motor is built into the pressure housing. The coils remain on the dry side around a recess in the housing, and the rotor with magnets slides into the recess and is secured with a screw. This way, there is no breach in the pressure housing for a shaft. This design has been around for a while and works very well. However, it's most likely to complicated for a DIY'er, as it means you are basically building and designing your own brushless motor, and have to have some major milling equipment to fabricate the housing with recess for the motor's rotor.
  • Moderator
    It does look like the camera pod is the only part under water. If you watch close, until it actually lifts out of the water there's not much in depth changes. Still cool though...

    @Bill - Been working on a plan to remote my B-in-law's underwater fish cam... So your brushless motors are inside a sealed compartment and not actually in the water?
  • The technology of brushless motors underwater works fine. All of our small unmanned underwater vehicles use brushless motors as their main drive. It works well, the rotor assembly is flooded with seawater and the coils stay inside the pressure vessel. No openings with gaskets that could leak or anything.
  • that second video had amazing video quality! how did they make a camera that small with such high video quality!!!
  • Mikrokopter did show one taking off from underwater a long time ago. Funny how the tri rotor got 2 cameras & he went through all the trouble of gimbaling......the camera that doesn't record anything. People have to be told what they want.
  • 4 props imho by looking at the shadow @ 46sec
  • ...and from the sound of them it looks like that's not the case. The props are above the surface and it's just the cam pod that's swimming.
  • We didn't actually get to see the machine, so who knows how many props it has. There could be a second set of low-pitch props for water ops and an another set of regular ones for flying.
  • Developer
    Even if brushless motors work under water, they are are terrible at low rpm / high torque operations. So a big prop underwater would not work very well I think. But the idea is great! Just scale it up to full size and put it in the next Bond movie. :)
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