Would planes be better if they were more like birds?

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jedi

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Copied from the HBA Hanger Flying - Off Topic section on the Topic of "Thread Drift" item #38:

From The University of Bristol web page titled "Would planes be better if they were more like birds? Eagle-inspired engineering "

Speaking of thread drift and eagles and owls:


Would planes be better if they were more like birds? Eagle-inspired engineering
 

henryk

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-oscillating/ flapping thrusters are much more effective as rotating are !
 
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rdj

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All planes would fly better if they didn't have to carry humans. The fundamental problem with making planes more like birds is that humans aren't very bird-like.
 

nickec

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The take-off and landing of birds produce envy in humans. We covet it. If we could get it, we definitely would want it. Assuming safety attained the levels we insist on.

We also admire the compaction of birds. They take up far less space on the ground when not flying than when soaring. The ease of their wing stowing, the completeness of it, would be a great thing to have in several genres of aircraft. Our folding and compaction of wings pale in comparison to that of birds and bats.
 

REVAN

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Interesting article @jedi

I read the article, watched the videos and followed the links. The folks who did all this work had apparently set up a 3-D scanner and captured an image of their owl in flight as it flew through the flow-visualization bubble plane. I was able to download their STL file of the owl and import that into my CAD. The STL model was lumpy and slightly asymmetric, but good enough to use for a reference to design a cool looking model (using a little artistic-license where necessary to fill in the holes, so-to-speak).

My wing-grid is a bit crude. I just used extrusions for the grid elements, so my "tip-feathers" are square-ish looking. Even with that, I think the wing looks pretty good. I'm calling this the "Owlet". Not bad for a day's work in SpaceClaim CAD.

Owlet_Rev1.jpg
 
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jedi

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Nice!

I posted a buzzard configuration a while back with the question of is their a use for this aircraft? The general consensus was not much use for the design and the thread died there. One issue was the glider need to be self launching. I agree, but the glider was the first step. Development stopped there.

Same question here. This looks like a real nice drone. It needs propulsion. Should that be prop, jet or other? Can it be scaled up to man carrying size? If so would you want one? Would you want to ride in one? Would you actually buy or build one?

I propose a center line electric ducted fan aft mounted above and just ahead of the tail along the lines of the Cirrus Vision Jet.
 
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WonderousMountain

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Pretty committed to Air flow control (circulation) for sustained power on. My thoughts on the model:

Props, - tried and truly effective, a lot of loads and built in weight, no easy outs.

Jets, - easy to tack on, good at pursuit, hell on fuel use, never really cheap, optimum developement a pain in the aft end.

Buried fans, - thrust arrays - On board oxygen, takes space up, also lost mass for whole system, mess to monitor & install.

Wing Flapping, - has potential, lack of design by similarity options, long wirey control runs might be an issue, UHWPE? material compatibility questions.

Suck & Blow, (flow control) - Any air pump will have measurable effect, throttling should be possible, single to several pumps facilitate design, fuel use moderate, rapid poweroff, tech is sort of attainable.

Helping,
CK LouPai
 

henryk

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It needs propulsion. Should that be prop, jet or other?
=AZAZEL 1= 12kG thrust ... ( circa 25 kG/HP specific thrust !)


=allmost self launched...

BTW=ducted fan D=0.7m ,30 HP Fthrust=70 kG (circa 2.3 kG/HP specific thrust !)
 

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WINGITIS

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Interesting article @jedi

I read the article, watched the videos and followed the links. The folks who did all this work had apparently set up a 3-D scanner and captured an image of their owl in flight as it flew through the flow-visualization bubble plane. I was able to download their STL file of the owl and import that into my CAD. The STL model was lumpy and slightly asymmetric, but good enough to use for a reference to design a cool looking model (using a little artistic-license where necessary to fill in the holes, so-to-speak).

My wing-grid is a bit crude. I just used extrusions for the grid elements, so my "tip-feathers" are square-ish looking. Even with that, I think the wing looks pretty good. I'm calling this the "Owlet". Not bad for a day's work in SpaceClaim CAD.

View attachment 116075
That is rather a LARGE transformation you have made from the base file(ATTACHED)

WELL DONE!

Or maybe I did not find the same STL you started with?



THE BASE 3D OWL.png
 

Bigshu

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The take-off and landing of birds produce envy in humans. We covet it. If we could get it, we definitely would want it. Assuming safety attained the levels we insist on.

We also admire the compaction of birds. They take up far less space on the ground when not flying than when soaring. The ease of their wing stowing, the completeness of it, would be a great thing to have in several genres of aircraft. Our folding and compaction of wings pale in comparison to that of birds and bats.
As far as safety level, you don't hear stories of birds crashing on takeoff, or fatalities from a bird crash (unless running into something hard...). Seems like they're pretty safe, since even baby birds can learn to fly well in very short order.
 

Bigshu

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Of course planes would be better if they were like birds. No government regulation, self piloting, instinctive self preservation,self repairing and when you need parts they are really cheap.
Really cheep?
 
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