Ground Effect on a Landing Platform for an Unmanned Aerodynamic System

Open Access
Conference Proceedings
Authors: Bruno TardaguilaStijn ClausManuel Martínez HerreroJolien De WulfLouis NagelsStijn Verwulgen

Abstract: The ground effect is a phenomenon that takes place when an air vehicle is flying or hovering in vicinity of another surface, as this alters the airflow. Ground effect impacts inter alia flight stability which is a negative factor when landing. In this research we investigated a landing platform with a grid surface for a drone. 4 different textures for a landing platform were tested, a solid surface, a grid surface with hexagon cut-outs hovering in the air and the same grid with a solid surface 6cm below. We compared the vertical trust data of these to no surface within ground effect distance. The grid surface hovering in the air proved to have a 13% reduction of ground effect compared to the solid surface. While using the grid surface it is important to keep the distance of an underlying solid surface in mind. If the surface below the grid was too close, the positive effect was greatly reduced, making it no longer a preferable option to a solid surface. Therefore additionally, the minimal distance between the grid and the surface below was checked, for the second surface to be of no influence. This being 2 times the diameter of the rotor. This research shows potential for a grid surfaced landing platform, however due to stability issues while testing, further research on this topic is required.

Keywords: Drone, Ground effect, aviation, landing, landing platform, thrust, unmanned vehicle

DOI: 10.54941/ahfe1003748

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