Unmanned Aerial Systems | Fixed Wing vs Multirotor

June 20, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

The following is from our June article for a national pulp and paper publication

Multirotor “drone” systems have become so popular over the past five years that many have forgotten or discredited fixed wing unmanned aircraft. 

Multirotor systems serve as a convenient option for aerial photography, video, and mapping applications. 

Common benefits:

  • Vertical take-off and land (VTOL):  Multirotor aircraft can take off and land without the need for a linear flight path
  • Hovering or extremely slow flight:  Multirotor aircraft can hover in one position or perform maneuvers at very slow speeds
  • Storage/travel:  Multirotor aircraft typically have a small footprint and can be stored in a smaller space than fixed wing aircraft

That said, fixed wing aircraft can be more beneficial with respect to both surveillance/reconnaissance and mapping applications.

Common benefits:

  • Flight duration: Fixed wing UAS have an average battery duration of 40 minutes to greater than 1 hour
  • Larger coverage area: A fixed wing UAS can perform a mapping grid for an area of 500 acres or greater in a single flight
  • Safety: Most fixed wing UAS are constructed from lightweight styrofoam and have a very slow glide characteristic

Fixed wing UAS examples:

Finwing Penguin (owned by Louisiana Helicam)

RVJET (owned by Louisiana Helicam)

Sensefly Ebee

 

 

 

 

 


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