Other considerations

Theory behind lift and drag

Water proofing electronics

A short tutorial on waterproofing servos with CorrosionX. Those of us who fly in challenging weather conditions often get moisture into our electronics, especially the servos and servo connectors. CorrosionX is a great product that could be used to waterproof these electronics. (I am not a spokesperson for this brand, nor am I being paid in any form by them.) For information about CorrosionX: http://www.corrosionx.com/

Anti-vibration methods

During flight, the electric motor of the drone does produce vibrations which could result in vibration blur in photographs. As a solution, we created a vibration dampening system using low density packing foam. We later discovered that the common kitchen sponge works equally well as a construction material. This instrument for Stable Placement of ONboard Gear and Equipment (iSPONGE) successfully removes vibration blur.

The iSPONGE requires only a single kitchen sponge (~85 X 70 X 35 mm), some pieces of non-adhesive velcro straps and a strong glue (e.g. Gorilla glue).

1. First cut hole for lens (~45 mm diameter for Canon IXUS 220 HS)

2. Stick velcro straps to sponge at appropriate spots with strong glue.

3. Hot-glue edges of long sides to fuselage.

How it works: the camera (~140 g) sits on the sponge, and together they jiggle like jell-o (or jelly). This dampens vibration from the motor really well.

Anti-vibration solutions for quadcopter


One of the main constraints of operating the drone in a tropical rainforest environment is the lack of landing space. We have experimented with developing a parachute landing system for our drones. This gurney parachute system is an early prototype. The main tradeoff of installing a parachute is the extra payload it incurs.IMG_0661