The Flying Ring is a new flying vehicle being developed at the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control, ETH Zurich. The goal of the project is to fully characterize all aerodynamic properties of the vehicle. While traditional quadcopters are agile and carry high payloads they are not efficient in forward flight, with traditional lift to drag ratios comparable to a fruit fly. The Flying Ring vehicle, however, can fly on its side, allowing the blades to propel it forward faster than a typical quadcopter.
Since April, a troupe of eight flying machines has been performing in a Cirque du Soleil Broadway show called Paramour. This group of quadcopters has now completed its first 100 shows in front of a live theater audience, without a single incident. Giventhestringofrecentsafetyincidentswithdrones (there’smore), this begs the question: How was this accomplished?
The IDSC Tailsitter has been designed at the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control, ETH Zurich, as a testbed for novel control algorithms for tailsitter vehicles. The goal of the project is to develop controllers that enable agile and robust flight for all flight regimes, such that the full potential of these vehicles can be exploited.
The Flying Platform is a new flying machine developed at the Institute for Dynamic Systems and Control at ETH Zurich. Its purpose is to study the use of electric ducted fans as control and propulsion systems for flying machines in applications where size is limited and high static thrusts are required, for example in aerial vehicles capable of vertical take-off and landing (VTOL), hovercrafts or even actuated wingsuit flight. The video below shows how the thrust vectoring is used to stabilize the vehicle.
Although I am amazed with UAVs and their versatility, I must admit that having a flying camera zoom by – and zoom in on me – can be intimidating. Not because the drone has a camera, but because I don’t always know who is behind that camera. If the drone operator were immediately identifiable, however, I would have no problem. That is exactly the issue Fotokite tries to solve.
In this video update, we show that a quadrocopter can be safely piloted by hand after a motor fails, without the aid of a motion capture system. This follows our previous video, where we demonstrated how a complete propeller failure can be automatically detected, and that a quadrocopter can still maintain stable flight despite the complete loss of a propeller.
In this 4th interview of our four-part ECHORD series, conducted last June, Sascha Griffiths from TUM talks to Raffaello D’Andrea, Professor of Dynamic Systems and Control at ETH Zurich and technical co-founder of Kiva Systems. The series explores success stories and common obstacles in industry-academia collaborations in the field of robotics, and examines the differences between these collaborations in the US, Europe and Asia.
Raffaello D’Andrea demos his quadrotor “athletes” at TED Global 2013.
Update with the full video below
Check out live tweets, amazing photos, TED blog posts and awesome video coverage of the session Those Flying Things at this year’s TED Global, featuring the work of automation and controls expert Raffaello D’Andrea, and drone ecologist Lian Pin Koh. We will be adding new material here as it becomes available, so check back soon. Photo credit: James Duncan Davidson.
With reporting and photos by Dario Brescianini and Mark Mueller and timelapse video by James Duncan Davidson.
Raffaello D’Andrea juggles quadrotors at TED Global 2013.
A quadrocopter swoops through the air to serve a glass of water without spilling a drop. Another gets two of its propellers cut off, yet still easily flies across the arena. “It looks like magic!” says ETH Zurich‘s Raffaello D’Andrea, but it took a lot of research, hard work and planning to bring this ‘magic trick’ to TED Global.