Our focus up to now has been towards developing the two most important elements of the aircraft;
namely, the wing, and the propulsion concepts.
As previously mentioned, the wing concept is unfathomabley important for:
1. achieving near-vertical take-off and landing,
2. providing inherent safety, and
3. delivering efficient aerodynamic performance.
So we’ve said a lot about this fancy wing of ours, and how it’s capable of flying over Mordor unscathed, but what have we actually done towards developing it?
We started by running some simulations to predict the aerodynamic performance of the wing. Next, a scaled prototype of the wing was built and experimentally tested, which confirmed the results obtained in the simulation environment.
The process of manufacturing and testing the wing concept is documented in the picture carousel below, followed by some video footage of the mobile wind tunnel testing.
All images of the Macrobat that have been presented so far, show two large diameter propellers as the propulsion concept. While this is a workable solution, we have also been exploring an alternative approach.
The concept is to use a distributed array of smaller propulsion elements. Not only does this have the distinct advantage of providing redundancy (from a safety perspective) but the physically smaller elements do not detract from the efficient aerodynamic configuration.
Experimental testing of some propulsion concepts are shown in the video below.
Scale Model Prototype
With the testing of the wing and propulsion concepts on-going, we are currently working towards building a scale model prototype of the Macrobat to demonstrate the flight performance.
Successful execution of this, will allow us to commence with the full-scale engineering development.