AIAA Design, Build, and Fly! - RC Groups
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Apr 19, 2001, 10:47 PM
Registered User

AIAA Design, Build, and Fly!

Hi Ezoners!

Below is a description and some pictures (hopefully) of my school project.

This is Miami University's (Oxord, OH) entry for this years AIAA design, build, and fly contest. The goal is to create a plane capable of meeting yearly requirements, while staying within contest limits.

This years goal is to carry as much steel and tennis balls as possible, during alternating sorties. You have ten minutes to do as many tennis ball and steel sorties as you can do. The tennis balls are weighted slightly more so that 100 tennis balls (13.5 lbs) count about as much as 20 lbs. You are limited to a 10 ft wing span, 5 lbs of cells, and must carry a certain minimum of both steel and tennis balls.

There is also a report and cost component to the total score. The report summarizes the design, and the cost factor lablels costs for each servo, motor, etc....

Here are some pics of our entry:
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I hope the above coding works!

Anyhow, the wing span is 10 feet, its around 9 feet long, and easily carries 100 tennis balls and as much steel as we want. With 5 pounds of cells, the all up weight is around 20 pounds. Its powered by a Astro 90 w/ superbox and a zinger 27-18! Guidance is provided by a Futaba 8uaps. Wheels are custom ball raced, and the gear is from TnT, in Toledo, OH (great guys!). Power comes from 37, 2400 mah SR cells (larry and steve have been most patient with us! THANKS SR!). The plane is mostly foam and carbon fiber, courtesy of Knauf Polystyrene, and CST.

It flys just like you would think, like a big baby!

Anyway, just thought you'd be interested in another aspect of this great hobby. We leave early Friday morning- I'll keep you posted!

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Apr 19, 2001, 10:49 PM
Registered User

Apr 19, 2001, 11:06 PM
Speed Demon
GregG's Avatar
Hi Foss, that puppy looks great! It kinda reminds me of some of the golden age racers. It sounds like you have an excellent combination. Best of luck in the competition.
Apr 19, 2001, 11:07 PM
Registered User
Cool. You should post the report.
Apr 19, 2001, 11:13 PM
Ascended Master
Sparky Paul's Avatar
These competitions are the neatest thing since sliced bread... The Society of Automotive Engineers hosts two, one in Florida this last weekend and another in CA the first weekend in June..
The AIAA airplane requirements are more open, letting the wierd things get some consideration..
For anyone with an engineering bent currently in college, it's worth looking into. Experience as a modeller counts for a lot!
Sparky Paul
PJB's Seriously Aeronautical Stuff
Apr 19, 2001, 11:16 PM
Registered User

No need for an engineering desire here! I'm a chemistry major, and about half of our team is business! All you need are two great advisors and an interest in aviation.

I really should get to be.....we are leaving in three hours!

Apr 20, 2001, 12:02 AM
Registered User
deadcell's Avatar
If you took all the weight out of it i bet it would be a really cool giant scale pylon racer!! WAY COOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Let us know how your team does in the contest. DC
Apr 20, 2001, 01:01 AM
Balsa Builder
Paul Susbauer's Avatar
Looks great, I like the paint job. Ditto on the report.

Apr 20, 2001, 08:22 AM
Gravity Hating RC Pilot
while on the subject of competitions... the 5th anual micro aerial vehicle competition was held on April 7th with an outstanding array of airplanes. Of the 9 schools, 3 brought electrically based planes and 7 schools brought gas powered (1 was an overlap). of these, ALL the electrics managed to make qualifying runs, while less than half of the gas were able to do so.

My school entered for the first time this year in the MAV competition, and decided to take on its payload carrying mission. This is to carry a 2 oz. payload for 2 minutes minimum, and land without damage. below are some pictures of the plane and some specs...


MOTOR: rocket 400
ESC: Sprite 25
PROP: Graupner 6.3x3 CAM FOLDING
BATTERY: 6 x kr600AE
TX: HITEC Flash 4x
WING LOADING: 22.8 Oz. / Sq. ft.
WEIGHT: 12 oz.
MAX SPEED: 36 MPH (measured using Thrust and drag versus velocity curves)
YEARS of RC AIRPLANE EXPERIENCE (for the team): 0 (when measured at beginning of project)

4th place overall in payload carrying mission
2nd smallest electric
highest placing 1st year team
Beat some schools who had plenty of experience in MAV and std. RC aircraft

[This message has been edited by dbhenry1234 (edited 04-20-2001).]
Apr 20, 2001, 10:44 AM
Registered User
Larry @ SR's Avatar
As a member of the AIAA I love helping out with this competition each year. In recent years the teams we've powered with SR packs have both won and placed highly in the competition. This year I think 12 of the teams will be using our packs.

I have to tell you it's like doing a military project where you're making stuff for all the countries in the war. We help each team with loads of technical advice in addition to the packs themselves and at the same time we have to have absolute secrecy and not tell one team what the other teams are doing. I was surprised that one of the teams pleaded with us this year to tell them what the others were doing. Naturally, I couldn't and didn't.

I had hoped to make it to the competition this weekend, but I got bogged down with another project and my Dakota is down for annual. I can't just shoot down and back in a day so I won't be able to make it.

Everyone at SR wishes everyone in the competition the best. It looks like you're going to have great weather!


Apr 20, 2001, 04:34 PM
Registered User
member73's Avatar
I partook in SAE heavy lift competition when I was in school (WPI, that where you're from dbhenry?). The plane was powered by a slimy K&B .60 as per the competition rules. We never got to the competition part because it was on graduation weekend, but the experience of designing, building, and test flying was great. This MAV competition looks very cool, much like Aerovironment's Black Widow.

Best of luck to all the teams (especially WPI) in the upcomming events.
Apr 20, 2001, 05:00 PM
Gravity Hating RC Pilot
yup... WPI... the MAV replaced the SAE heavylift MQP here this year....
Nov 27, 2009, 12:14 AM
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