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Old Sep 07, 2012, 08:24 PM
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Joined Dec 2009
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New Design Airship for FPV and Observation at near earth altitudes


This is a new design using a unique approach to build a slender blimp platform for near-earth exploration. I will be using individual bags for helium which will be allowed to interchange gas between them with valve network controller array. This will allow high altitude flight as well as low altitude use and conserve helium instead of venting overboard at high altitude. It will comprise of a CF frame in an exo-frame structure. The gondola below will incorporate 4 motors, fully articulating, and escs along with a full flight control system including gps, magnometers and OSD system. The cameras will consist of 10x visual zoom, IR cam and regular digital camera for single shots. There will also be room onboard for various atmospheric collection packages and experiments.

Construction is scheduled for early 2014 and testing stages will follow afterwards. Objectives are to test slender designed platform with capability to loiter in near-space altitudes from 20-25km for durations of 30-60 days. The reason for this altitude will be to test feasibility for a blimp design to be used to explore the Martian planet for extended periods.

The propulsion systems will comprise of electric propeller propulsion system which will charge from solar cells located on top and sides of blimp. There will also be an exotic power source onboard for charging batteries which will not be covered in the construction and testing notes due to patent possibilities hence the time holdup before construction starts.

The blimp design will have a very low frontal drag ratio in the 4.5-4.9 area allowing best overall volume of blimp lifting structure but minimizing the frontal drag component. The exoskeleton structure will allow the least weight while keeping lifting cost minable.

This blog will be updated from time to time as we complete and test different segments of the onboard and ground station instrumentation, flight control system and software programming for mission.
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Last edited by batfire; Oct 18, 2012 at 10:11 PM.
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