Developing robust UAV autopilot controllers for flight in icing

**NEW PUBLICATION**  In-flight icing is a severe risk for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). In these conditions, ice accumulates on the wings and propellers which disturbs the airfoil. As a consequence, the aerodynamic performance of the wings and propeller is reduced. Ice also reduces the effectiveness of the control surfaces. Most UAVs use an autopilot system forContinue reading “Developing robust UAV autopilot controllers for flight in icing”

Highlights of the UAV Icing Workshop

By Bogdan Løw-Hansen, Joachim Wallisch, Markus Lindner, Michael Cheung and Nicolas Müller The 1st International Workshop on Unmanned Aircraft Icing took place in Trondheim on 29th-30th of November. The purpose of the workshop was to gather different stakeholders interested in unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) icing, including – scientists, engineers, manufacturers, investors, operators, and authorities –Continue reading “Highlights of the UAV Icing Workshop”

Succesful workshop!

One week after the 1st UAV Icing Workshop in Trondheim, we thank all participants for joining! With your support, we have made this event into a successful forum for discussing UAV icing-related challenges in research, industry, and regulations. More than 80 participants were registered for the event with about half of them physically present inContinue reading “Succesful workshop!”

Why propeller icing prevents UAVs from operating in bad weather

**NEW PUBLICATION**  When flying in icing conditions, uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAVs) face severe dangers. The propeller of the UAV, which is creating the thrust for the UAV is especially sensitive to the accumulation of ice during flight in atmospheric icing conditions. To estimate the impact of icing on the propeller, we conducted experimental tests inContinue reading “Why propeller icing prevents UAVs from operating in bad weather”

Efficient ice protection systems – Timing is everything

**NEW PUBLICATION** Aircraft without ice protection systems will face severe issues when flying in icing conditions. To reduce the risk of losing the aircraft, the aircraft must either remain grounded when the risk of icing exists, or it must be equipped with an ice protection system. As of today, no mature ice protection system existsContinue reading “Efficient ice protection systems – Timing is everything”

Why we need a special icing severity index for unmanned aircraft

**NEW Publication** Icing severity indices are ameasure for the in-flight icing risk and are an important factor for path and mission planning. Small aircraft, such as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) and urban air mobility (UAM) vehicles, are particularly sensitive to icing and thus proper assessment of weather risks is critical. Icing severity is a metricContinue reading “Why we need a special icing severity index for unmanned aircraft”

Challenges for icing CFD and unmanned aircraft

**NEW PUBLICATION** Computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulation methods are one of the most important design and development tools for aircraft – manned or unmanned. For the challenge of in-flight icing, special icing CFD codes have been developed such as FENSAP-ICE or LEWICE3D. These tools can simulate and predict the behavior of airfoils and aircraft in icingContinue reading “Challenges for icing CFD and unmanned aircraft”

1st UAV Icing Workshop announced

Announcing the 1st international workshop on icing of unmanned aircraft. The UAV icing workshop will be held in Trondheim (Norway) and online during November 29-30, 2022. The workshop will be hosted by the UAV Icing Lab at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). The objective of this workshop is to provide a platformContinue reading “1st UAV Icing Workshop announced”

Ice shedding detection and how it helps to operate UAVs in icing conditions

Written by Bogdan Løw-Hansen, PhD candidate. Today, harsh weather conditions and especially icing are a big problem for uncrewed aerial vehicles (UAVs). Several solutions exist, but many require substantial amounts of energy to operate them, which are not always available on smaller UAV platforms. To this end, the UAV Icing Lab at NTNU is currentlyContinue reading “Ice shedding detection and how it helps to operate UAVs in icing conditions”

Can ice fragments destroy a UAV propeller?

In one of our recent icing wind tunnel experiments, the NTNU UAV Icing Lab investigated if ice fragments are a hazard to UAV propellers. The resulting high-speed video footage shows the moment ice impacts the propeller blades. Here is a small preview of the footage. When an aircraft flies into special meteorological weather conditions, iceContinue reading “Can ice fragments destroy a UAV propeller?”