Construction of a Generic MAV and Evaluation of Unhinged Flaps on Landing Distance

Friday, 13 February 2015
Exhibit Hall (San Jose Convention Center)
William A. W. Jordan, Durham, NC
This study was conducted to recreate a Generic micro aerial vehicle (MAV) from basic data specified in an Air Force research report, and to conduct various tests using the vehicle.  Short takeoff and landing capabilities for MAVs are increasingly more important, as these vehicles are being launched in areas without an airstrip more frequently.  Therefore, the effect of hingeless flaps upon landing distance was the first test to be conducted and has been the only experiment to this date because of time constraints.  Hingeless flaps were hypothesized to allow short landing capabilities without requiring a drastic modification to the aircraft.  The aircraft was constructed from available materials, including sheet foam and carbon fiber rods, in contrast to the molded carbon fiber of the original design.  The aircraft was equipped with servos and a motor, and was remotely piloted for the testing process, in which landing distance and descent angle were measured.  The results indicated that the hingeless flaps reduced landing distance and increased descent angle slightly, indicating a correct hypothesis, but further study will be required to validate these results.