An unmanned air vehicle launcher is required for defense and surveillance requirements. A basic hindrance in the use of U.A.V. is the requirement of large runway for takeoff, which is difficult to arrange. Therefore we are building a U.A.V. catapult mechanism to aid in this situation. The catapult is a lightweight and rigid structure that is able to accommodate different sizes of U.A.Vs for the launch. The base of the catapult is a truss structure that is very light and strong. Guidance rail is attached on top of the structure for the trolley travel. This report evaluates the multiple design solutions of a lightweight, portable and rigid structure of UAV launcher that can be designed and fabricated as per the specific requirements.
Based on theoretical predictions and simulation/experimental validations, we have successfully sized a pneumatic catapult mechanism that is capable of launching a maximum of 15 Kg of UAV at the desired launch speed. Project deliverables and wish lists of the SORs were accomplished. A very unique aspect of this project has been the development of complete UAV Launcher simulator development in Simscape, which can be used to size UAVL system. The work has already been published in a highly regarded conference "Computer Aided Modeling and Simulation of Pneumatic U.A.V. Catapult Mechanism". This paper has been the most read research paper for one week on Research-Gate in aeronautical engineering for a whole week.
In the future work, we would suggest exploring different materials and gases and steam for running the system. Moreover, the system deployment time needs to be reduced by optimizing the mechanical subsystems further. Rapid production of pressure instead of bulky compressors should also be explored. The braking mechanism and UAV release mechanisms will also need to be optimized further.
Hammad ur rehman (2024). Pneumatic UAV launcher simulator (https://www.mathworks.com/matlabcentral/fileexchange/64374-pneumatic-uav-launcher-simulator), MATLAB Central File Exchange. Retrieved .
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