MAVs, UAVs - 21st Century Flying Wings

Flying Wing Micro-Air Vehicles


Lockheed Martin MicroSTAR

Aerodynamics of Micro-Air Vehicles

"Recently, there has been a serious effort to design aircraft that are as small as possible for special, limited-duration missions. These vehicles might carry visual, acoustic, chemical or biological sensors.

These aircraft, called micro-air vehicles, are of interest because electronic detection and surveillance sensor equipment can now be miniaturized so that the entire payload weighs about one ounce. The long term goal of this project is to develop aircraft systems that weigh less then one ounce, have about a three inch wing span and can fly for 20 to 50 minutes at between 25 and 35 m.p.h..

Although it is not possible to meet all of the design requirements for a micro-air vehicle with current technology, research is proceeding on all of the system components at various government laboratories, companies and universities.

One of the areas of interest is the aerodynamic efficiency of various fixed wing, flapping wing, or rotary wing concepts since these vehicles are very small and must fly at very low speeds. The corresponding chord Reynolds number range is from 1,000 to about 50,000.

Very little if any, information on the performance of various airfoil/wing shapes exists, however, there has been a long history of natural flight studies (e.g. insects and small birds) which may be helpful.

Experiments to determine the flow physics and aerodynamic performance of various airfoil/wing shapes at chord Reynolds number below 50,000 have begun at the Hessert Center. Both fixed and flapping wing configurations are of interest"

Thomas J. Mueller

Design and Flight Test Results for Micro-sized fixed-wing and VTOL aircraft

A bird in the Hand, : Miniature and micro air vehicles challenge conventional thinking

Palm-size spy plane

Tiny Spies in the Sky

This file broken - a great link - will try to find it live. Any help appreciated. Many pages refer to this site

Flying Wing Unmanned, (Uninhabited) Air Vehicles

AeroVironment Unmanned Air Vehicles

AV Press Release - Centurion Solar Aircraft Finishes Flight Tests Early

FLUG REVUE December 1999: NASA ERAST drones

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Last updated November 17, 2001