Manufacturing of Bio-Inspired Micro Drones Using Advanced 3D Printing
The flight of insects, bats and birds, which exhibits unmatched agility, significantly benefits from passively and actively flexible wings that can undergo large elastic deformations. Bio-inspired solutions including corrugated wings with artificial skeletal or venation structures coupled with thin membranes, constituted by nonhomogeneous and anisotropic materials, can be designed exhibiting highly complex aero-elastic coupling achieving unprecedented aerodynamic performance for synthetic wings. Due to the limitation of efficient manufacturing methods, no truly bio-inspired functional wings have been produced yet. In this work, a novel bat-inspired wing-structure was designed and tested. Wing specimens are fabricated by 3D-printing, and experiments were carried out on wings under static loads at Oregon State University. Elastic deformations are measured using digital image correlation technique. The experimental results were compared with numerical simulation which employed finite element analysis. The unmatched results between numerical and experimental tests suggest that the structural properties of laser sintered parts could be affected by not only the material properties but other manufacturing factors such as parts orientation, laser power and scanning spacing
Authors: Congcong Hu, Roberto Albertani, David R. Otis, Jr.
Conference: CAMX 2016 – Anaheim