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Yet Another 3D Printed Drone

Design News recently added a report on another 3D printed drone.  These UAVs, or unmanned aerial vehicles, are popping up more and more in the additive manufacturing industry. 

“Engineers at the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) designed, built, and successfully tested the UAV as a radio-controlled, slope soaring glider.  The small wingspan, fixed-wing craft was created on a Stratasys Fortus 900mc FDM printer…the parts snap together and the total drone weighs less than 2.2 lb, with a wingspan of 4.9 ft.”  The drone itself was printed out of ABS plastic.

The AMRC’s Design & Prototyping Group chose Fused Deposition Modeling over other forms of 3D printing due to the fact that it has a “lower initial investment, lower material cost, and [a] simpler process when printing relatively large components like the drone’s airframe.”  With 3D printing, the team was able to create the design in 24 hours, as opposed to the more traditional way of manufacturing, which would have taken 24.

“The idea is to enable 3D printing of unmanned, disposable aircraft that could be sent on one-way missions for reconnaissance, search and rescue, or delivery.”

Video, Photo, and Quotes Courtesy of Design News & The University of Sheffield

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