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You Built What?!—A Tiny Helicopter!

A Norwegian engineer reinvented the way helicopters keep themselves stable. The result: create a radio-controlled craft that can take off from the palm of your hand

Helicopters are tricky beasts to keep aloft and stable. Full-size birds do it with skilled pilots, while most unmanned craft rely on gyroscopes and autopilot. But the 3.3-gram Picoflyer is too small for any such luxuries. Instead, Petter Muren, a Norwegian engineer who builds mini copters to fly indoors during long Scandinavian winters, reinvented the stability system.

To stay pointed in one direction, the Picoflyer, like many real whirlybirds, uses two sets of counter-rotating rotors, which offset the opposing forces that occur when an engine drives a propeller in flight. (If the rotors are driven one way, the engine and fuselage spin in the opposite direction.) But to keep from pitching or rolling out of control, the Picoflyer relies on a passive- stability system that adds no extra parts or weight. If the helo starts to tilt or lean one way, the ringed rotors naturally tilt equally in the other direction, bringing the bird back to level. Continuous little adjustments help it maintain a stable hover.

The U.S. military has expressed interest in Muren’s micro-copter as a surveillance drone, and universities are keen on them for “flying swarm” studies. But most interested are toy and hobby manufacturers— Muren’s passive-stability system has already inspired a larger radio-controlled hobby chopper called Bladerunner.

By Eric Adams

Source: http://www.popsci.com/popsci/how20/
9a69d3cb3c82a010vgnvcm1000004eecbccdrcrd.html

picoFlyer

Comments:

Hello buddies. I am kingsley,from Nigeria..
I am currently building a fixed pitch helicoper. Size 450.
It is almost entirely homebuilt.
When i first made the commitment to build this helicopter. My location and dwindling funds made it impossible to buy most of the critical components required to build a docile heli. But having made a commitment,i went on to fabricate those parts i couldn't buy. These parts includes,the rotor head,swashplate,oneway bearing,main rotor blades(wooden) and a Brushed Motor modification(to increas the Motor Kv).
All these aforementioned parts have all been fabricated and tested to certify worthiness. The Heli is almost done. It took me roughly 800 hours,including several trial and errors to get it up to the current stage now
As situation stands right now. The heli does lift up under its own power and is capable of carying the full heli weight including the li-ion battery pack. However,i don't do this for long as i have to hold and steady the tail with my left hand so the Heli does not roll or pitch. The reason is; i haven't installed the servos that control the swashplate.
I'm still looking for servos and a 4 channel Tx/Rx. The one i am currently using for testing purposes,has only 3 channels. So it would be fatal to attempt to use it to fly the heli. I will pretty well appreciate it alot if some nice friend out here offers me any. In case you wish to contact me,here's my email add.; Kingsleyobinna26@yahoo.com ... Thanks
Here is my progress work on the Heli: http://www.nairaland.com/1307261/homebuilt-radio-controlled-helicopter
Pakingzzz --- 2:25 Saturday, 9 September 2013

Well Kingsley,

I fail to see what this has to do with this thread you are working on a 450 and this is sub-micro. There is a great difference. If you continue to post in this vein you are likely to be banned as a spammer, your constant request for 'free parts' will not sit well with many of the members. What are you offering in exchange?

Tom.
tombo242 --- 5:15 Sunday, 9 September 2013

Comment form closed due to spams. Please use the forum to post comments instead.
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