UAV Flying Wing - Scratchbuilt [added video]

Although I'm still gathering information in the field of UAVs by programming the UAV Playground, I have now designed and built this Flying Wing as a future carrier for whatever electronics I'll be using. I've tried to design it as versatile as possible by using a platform where all the electronics is velcroed on (last picture). Like that it should be possible to carry around even bulky pieces of hardware.

- Kline-Fogleman KFm3 Airfoil (top steps at 50% and 75% chord)
- Wingspan 1240mm
- Wing area 24.8dm²
- Weight 430g (330g without battery)

- TURNIGY 28-26B 1350Kv motor
- Master Airscrew 7x4 propeller
- Rhino LiPo 3S1P 30C 1050 mAh
- 2 x HXT900 1.6kg/cm servo

This is the camera mount and its removable nose cone.

The back view of the Flying Wing with the motor and the KFm3 Airfoil steps visible.

Here the canopy is removed and the electronics and an Arduino are visible.

Free Design Tools [update]
- ProgeCAD 2008 Smart (AutoCAD clone)
- Google SketchUp (3D modeling)
- WinLaengs4 (CG calculation)
- Estimate Electric Motor and Prop Combo

First Flights [update]
The maiden flight was absolutely unproblematic. Only a few minor trim adjustments where necessary and I increased the travel adjust for elevator and aileron to 115%. I also mixed some elevator to the throttle so that the plane now stays level on throttle up. Elevon reflex is set to 3 degrees.
The reactions to the stick movements where quiet precise and it always amazes me how stable my Wings fly. Flying a curve with elevons only was a pleasure and you wouldn't have noticed the absence of the rudder in non acrobatic flying.
The KFm3 Airfoil is recommended for slow flying planes and although the maximum speed is rather low the flyable speed bandwidth is more than sufficient for a UAV ship.
I tested different weight configurations from 450 to 590g and there is definitely more payload potential because even at full load with a 2200mAh lipo and the camera mounted vertical climbing was still possible.
Flight time was about 25 minutes with a 2200mAh lipo (1680mAh recharged).

Aerial Video Central Switzerland
A manual non stabilized flight in gusty winds. I used a Toshiba Camileo S10 1080p HD video camera weighing 119 grams and costing about 165$.
For better quality and less jerking you can download the video from Vimeo (you need an account).

A flight in the Swiss mountains [update]
Filmed with the Toshiba Camileo S10 in WVGA mode (848x480, 60fps, no stabilization).

Views: 28989

Comment by Dave_fr on April 4, 2009 at 5:38am
Hi, nice job !

Is the wing twisted to give positive stablity ?
Comment by Noth666 on April 4, 2009 at 6:41am
Awesome plane! do you have carbon fibre or something the like to reinforce the wings? Have you flown it as RC yet? if so how does it handle?
Comment by Dick Kline on April 4, 2009 at 8:11am
Jaron... you've done a superb job of designing this aircraft. I can't wait to hear the report on the maiden flight. It will be interesting to see how steady the plane holds the camera. Also, how it handles the weight. I'm very excited about this UAV.
Comment by Jack Allen on April 4, 2009 at 9:34am
Cool looking wing Jaron. Look forward to maiden results.
Comment by jaron on April 4, 2009 at 12:18pm
Thanks for the nice comments!

Beautiful weather even here in Switzerland (!) and so I managed to test fly the Wing. See the [update] in the blog post.

Dave, the swept back wing and 3 degrees of elevon reflex give it enough stability. It's really unbelievable how stable that piece of foam flies (says a heli guy).

Noth666, until now I only used cheap wooden spars for my designs. In this case it's only 300mm for each wing half. The rigidity mainly comes from the foam layers of the Kline-Folgeman airfoil. Have a look at the PDF plan on my RC Groups blog for more details.

Dick, as soon as I got a camera that shoots decent video I'll post some footage.
Comment by jpace on April 4, 2009 at 12:50pm
Can you elaborate on the design and build process? Did you use software and if so what kind. Any information about this process would be wonderful. Thanks.
Comment by helitron on April 4, 2009 at 1:54pm
Great looking wing jaron, congrats on this construction ! I like also flying wings and just yesterday I've got a new one, my biggest so far: - 185 cm wing span ! Is good for a lot of payload :-).

Comment by jaron on April 4, 2009 at 3:28pm
jpace, I added a list of "Free Design Tools" to the blog post.

Thanks Erwin.
Comment by humboldtSG on April 6, 2009 at 9:08am
thats a hella sick design
Comment by jaron on April 6, 2009 at 12:53pm
Thanks humboldtSG.

I uploaded a very short aerial video taken from the UAV Flying Wing: Youtube video (don't forget to click on HQ)


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