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Aerodynamic Optimization & Structure Design of Ultra-Heavy Payload Micro Aircraft

Lab: Center of Aero Innovation & Realization for Students, School of Aerospace, Tsinghua University
Mentor: Associate Professor Haixin Chen

Considering the low Reynolds number and Mach number, the aerodynamic analyzing and design of micro aircraft is quite different from the bigger one. There’s few software which is specially designed for aerodynamic analyzing and design of micro aircraft, and using commercial CFD software to do the analyzing seems too complicated and unnecessary. In last year we developed software in MATLAB, which uses Genetic Algorithms toolbox. It can optimize the aerodynamic design of ultra-heavy payload micro aircraft (both available for conventional configuration and canard configuration), which is designed aim to participate several national and international air cargo competition.

The other critical part of air cargo design is structure design. We must build bigger plane to carry more payload meanwhile make sure the structure has lightest weight and enough strength. We test and use several kinds of material in the air cargo’s structure design, such as different kinds of wood and carbon fiber. Our air cargo got 2nd place in 1kg Electric Air Cargo Competition, 2009 National Aeronautics and Astronautics Model Champion-ship, and got 3rd place in European Air Cargo Challenge 2011 (ACC2011) in Stuttgart, Germany.

Download: ACC2011 aircraft design report in PDF
Download: Flight video in the 2010 national competition (WMV, 8.3MB)