Three year 9 students took to the school field for a maiden flight on 24th June following six months work on an Unmanned Ariel Vehicle project.
The system which Tom, Lewis and Rhonan have put together involves up-loading to the aircraft a pre-planned ‘mission’. This is designed using a Google Earth ground station in a laptop, which is then linked to a small computer inside the aircraft. The aircraft can then be launched manually and will fly its set course without any human control.
Mr Barrett said: “Predictions are that in 20 years time 40% of all flights will be made by unpiloted aircraft, so it is great to see these students working with such cutting edge technology that really will shape the future. This technology has many applications and will be an exciting area of employment for engineers.”
The next step for the team is to attach a camera and other survey applications to the airframe. Their long term goal is to design and build a new UAV aircraft from scratch that will have a longer range and flight time.