Customized Drone Platforms& Consulting Solutions

UAV Solutions

Here at Drone Developer, we focus on custom UAV design and airframe modularity in order to provide our clients a competitive edge over off-the-shelf drone platforms. This has let to pioneering research in product family and reconfigurable design methods that can now be offered in commercial UAS. We also research hybrid forward flight & hover design concepts and internet-connected approaches to bring a new level of convenience and mission possibilities to the user. 

  • Commercial off-the-shelf UAVs are adapted for a wide range of applications and missions and operate with inherent aerodynamic and flight performance losses which add energy costs for the user.

  • Custom design services from Drone Developer ensures that your fixed-wing UAV is designed to operate at a lift-to-drag ratio, L/D (a measure of aerodynamic efficiency) that is up to ≈20% higher compared to using an off-the-shelf UAV.

  • We do this by designing a high-performance wing that operates in flight at its maximum L/D and flight velocity that minimizes required thrust and optimizes range or endurance. The goal is to shift the off-the-shelf UAV operating point to the custom UAV operating point.

UAV solns picture

The implications of increasing L/D by ≈20% is an increase in the distance flown by the UAV, range R also by ≈20% based on the range equation:

Assumptions: propeller driven aircraft at constant velocity, angle of attack, and brake specific fuel consumption.

We then give you the cutting-edge over any other design service by employing our Drone Developer Design Differentiators (D4) based on the latest research:

Reconfigurable Design Techniques

If you need to fly two or more missions with very different flight requirements or payloads, a reconfigurable modular system with multiple UAV variants is the way to go to ensure high performance for each mission while lowering system costs. Dr. Maldonado of Drone Developer is a pioneer in reconfigurable design techniques for UAVs, producing some of the earliest studies and publications in the field. For more information, access our Journal of Aircraft article. 

Hybrid Air Vehicle Design Techniques

Hybrid UAVs that can accomplish efficient forward flight and vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) are becoming more popular for commercial missions due to their flight versatility. Drone Developer approaches hybrid air vehicle design using a combination of tilt-body and tilt-rotor techniques for flight transition, using some of the same concept air vehicle design processes and analysis tools used at NASA. For more information, access our Aerospace Science and Technology article.

Flow Control Techniques

Flow control is a technique to improve the aerodynamic and flight performance of air vehicles during flight maneuvering or cruise. Drone Developer is at the forefront of transferring the latest passive and active flow control techniques from the laboratory to commercial UAVs. For more information, access some slides presented at the 2020 AUVSI XPONENTIAL conference.

Let's Fly!

"First in the industry consulting services to put you on the fast-track to operating your own customized unmanned aircraft. We work directly with the client to develop optimal mission-driven drones using established air vehicle design methods with the latest research-based approaches."

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