2017 winter semester Flying Robot Project 3rd Team ANovember 01, 2017


On November 1st, we started the session by closing out the remaining construction of the horizontal and vertical stabilizers from the previous week. This meant cutting out balsa gussets and gluing them together to rigidify the weaker joints. The parts are not perfect, as some of the bonding surfaces where not matched precisely, but they will be sufficient for construction. A picture of the final part is shown.
Once this was completed, the team began to think about the wing design. Specifically, we needed to decide the spar and rib configuration, dihedral angle, and wing-fuselage attachment. We drafted several ideas and discussed the merits of each. How many spars will we use and out of what material will they be made? Should the spar run through the center of the ribs or through the top edge? Should we build our leading edge out of thin balsa sheet or will a lighter paper material suffice? These were among the questions we asked ourselves. Ultimately, we decided on a carbon square tube wing spar because it is rigid, strong, and the square shape will make it easy to set our rib twist angles. The ribs will be made out of balsa sheet, and will be reinforced with crosshatched struts aft and fore of the wing spar. Lightweight paper material will be used for the wing skin because it will save weight and it will be easy to repair if the plane crashes. As for the fuselage linkage, we decided to go with a T-joint as pictured. Once again, this simple design makes it easy to set the dihedral angle, and will provide a rigid joint.
Once these design characteristics were agreed upon, we assigned parts for each team member to draft. By next week’s meeting, we expect to have drawings of the T-joint, ribs, and spar ready to laser cut.