By: Russ Chapman
Correspondent 

Team Members: Matthew Simpson, Kaitlin Shroll, Cassie Freeman, Bjorn Vasenden, Ryan Hom, Raymond Wang, Yared Assefa, Kaila Romero, May Maginde 

Preliminary design team, Vision UAV, is designing a surveillance drone under the guidance of Professor Zwick.

The team’s mission was provided for them at the start of the semester by Professor Zwick and the team has worked to rise to the challenge.  

Team Lead Matthew Simpson described the premise of the project. The mission of the unmanned aerial vehicle is to be capable of flying three hundred miles within a six-hour period.

The design also needs to be compact enough to be transported to the launch location in the bed of a pickup truck.  

The greatest challenge overcome by Vision UAV thus far in the process has been designing a model that would be suitable to build and test in a wind tunnel.

The team has completed the initial design phase and is now progressing to more detailed analysis and considerations. 

The next steps for the team is to finalize a design for the aircraft in regard to the current structural and assembly considerations for testing of the scale model.

Then the team will be able to test and analyze wind tunnel and structural data that will be integral to the construction of the scaled down half-size model that will be assembled and flown next semester. 

Team lead Simpson spoke for the team explaining its excitement to have to opportunity to fully design, build, and then fly and aircraft of their own creation.

It is hard to pick one aspect of the project that has excited them most, but the scope of the project completed is quite satisfying. 

The team extends good luck and encouragement to other future design teams. Team lead Simpson said, “It really shows just how much you actually do learn at this university and it just makes all of the hard work worthwhile.” A sentiment all engineering students can get excited about. 

Finally, Vision UAV would like to that Professor Zwick and Dr. Haslam for guiding the team every step of the way.

The team also thanks the College of Engineering for the education and the opportunity to participate in such a project as well as its faculty for their assistance in learning and in the project.  

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