Development of a solar powered multirotor micro aerial vehicle

ABIDALI, Aly, AGHA, Stephen, MUNJIZA, Antonio and SHAHEED, Mohammad H. (2024). Development of a solar powered multirotor micro aerial vehicle. Scientific Reports, 14 (1): 5771.

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Rotary-wing aerial vehicles offer manoeuvrability and vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) advantages over fixed-wing systems. Rotary-wing systems do however have comparatively higher energy demands and consequently shorter flight times and therefore a greater energy dependence over their fixed-wing counterparts. Advances in photovoltaic technologies have resulted in significant increases in the specific power (power-to-weight-ratio) of solar cells enabling the design of solar-powered rotary-wing aircraft, and now micro-sized variants. The micro aerial vehicle (MAV) presented, the Micro Solarcopter, is a 0.15 m × 0.15 m × 0.02 m solar-rechargeable radio-controlled aircraft. The 0.071 kg aircraft can fly for an average time of 3.5 min, recharge in approximately 68 min under 1000 W/m2 irradiance at 25 °C and can hibernate for 38 days without sunlight. The paper explores the use of commercially available photovoltaic cells for the purpose of increasing the energy autonomy of multi-rotor MAVs, by enabling them to stay out in the field without returning to base for charging. A working prototype has been presented which incorporates a battery management system, automatic power on and off, low-power sleep mode, and first-person-view (FPV) camera.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: ** From Springer Nature via Jisc Publications Router ** Licence for this article: **Journal IDs: eissn 2045-2322 **Article IDs: publisher-id: s41598-024-54079-9; manuscript: 54079 **History: collection 12-2024; online 08-03-2024; published_online 08-03-2024; accepted 08-02-2024; registration 08-02-2024; submitted 05-04-2023
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SWORD Depositor: Colin Knott
Depositing User: Colin Knott
Date Deposited: 12 Mar 2024 14:31
Last Modified: 22 Mar 2024 08:00

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