Project Proposal


The proposal outlines your project's motivation, design, requirements, ethics, and safety. The project proposal is an expansion on the information provided in the RFA. Use the following format:

  1. Introduction

    • Problem: One to two paragraphs detailing the problem statement. Include any relevant references to justify the existence or importance of the problem.
    • Solution: One to two paragraphs describing the solution. Give a high-level idea of what your solution is, then delve into detail as to how it is implemented. You do not have to commit to a particular implementation at this point, but your description should be explicit and concrete.
    • Visual Aid: A pictorial representation of your project that puts your solution in context. Include other external systems relevant to your project (e.g. if your solution connects to a phone via Bluetooth, draw a dotted line between your device and the phone). Note that this is not a block diagram and should explain how the solution is used, not a breakdown of inner components.

      Sample visual aid for project which remaps GameCube buttons on the fly.

    • High-level requirements list: A list of three quantitative characteristics that this project must exhibit in order to solve the problem. Each high-level requirement must be stated in complete sentences and displayed as a bulleted list. Avoid mentioning "cost" as a high level requirement.
  2. Design
    • Block Diagram: Break your design down into blocks and assign these blocks into subsystems. Label voltages and data connections. Your microcontroller can live in multiple subsystems if you wish, as in the example below.

      Sample block diagram for electric longboard + remote

    • Subsystem Overview: A brief description of the function of each subsystem in the block diagram and explain how it connects with the other subsystems. Every subsystem in the block diagram should have its own paragraph.
    • Subsystem Requirements: For each subsystem in your block diagram, you should include a highly detailed block description. Each description must include a statement indicating how the block contributes to the overall design dictated by the high-level requirements. Any interfaces with other blocks must be defined clearly and quantitatively. Include a list of requirements where if any of these requirements were removed, the subsystem would fail to function. Good example: Power Subsystem must be able to supply at least 500mA to the rest of the system continuously at 5V +/- 0.1V.
    • Tolerance Analysis: Identify an aspect of your design that poses a risk to successful completion of the project. Demonstrate the feasibility of this component through mathematical analysis or simulation.
  3. Ethics and Safety
    Assess the ethical and safety issues relevant to your project. Consider both issues arising during the development of your project and those which could arise from the accidental or intentional misuse of your project. Specific ethical issues should be discussed in the context of the IEEE and/or ACM Code of Ethics. Cite, but do not copy the Codes. Explain how you will avoid ethical breaches. Cite and discuss relevant safety and regulatory standards as they apply to your project. Review state and federal regulations, industry standards, and campus policy. Identify potential safety concerns in your project.

Formatting Guidelines

The formatting and writing style should be the same as that of the final report. Please see the Final Report Guidelines for details, or check out the Lecture slides on the topic. We recommend using a LaTeX template. You can find that on the Final Report page or here.

Submission and Deadlines

The Project Proposal document should be uploaded to My Project on PACE in PDF format before the deadline listed on the Calendar.

There are two deadlines on the Calendar. If you submit before the Early Deadline, your team will get 3 additional points of credit to be applied to your Proposal. This means that if your proposal would normally score an 18/25, you will instead receive a 21/25. It is highly recommended to complete your proposal by the early deadline for maximum points!

VTOL Drone with Only Two Propellers

Yanzhao Gong, Jinke Li, Tianqi Yu, Qianli Zhao

Featured Project


- Yu Tianqi(tianqiy3)

- Li Jinke(jinkeli2)

- Gong Yanzhao(yanzhao8)

- Zhao Qianli(qianliz2)


# **PROBLEM:**

Nowadays, drones, as an important carrier of new technology and advanced productivity, have become an vital part of the development of new aviation forms. They have been used in many different areas such as military, civilian, commercial and so on. Traditional drones like helicopters have shortcomings in flight speed while fixed-wing aircraft require a runway for takeoff and landing. Vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft not only have helicopters' assessibility and flexbility to take off and land in small spaces, thus they can fly to destinations that are not easily accessible by traditional aircraft, such as remote areas or areas with poor infrastructure; the design of VTOL also allows for faster deployment and response times which is especially important in emergency situations where every second counts. Addtionlly, simpler construcrtion of this drone not only reduces over all cost but requires less energy in longer flight time. Overall, VTOL aircraft offer a level of flexibility and efficiency that traditional aircraft cannot match, making them a valuable tool in a variety of industries, including transportation, military, and emergency services.


We plan to design a small VTOL UAV with a wingspan of about one meter to achieve both vertical takeoff and landing and horizontal flight like a fixed-wing aircraft by means of a horizontal tail and rotatable propellers located at the ends of the mean wings. Such two flight modes and the transition between them require a very precise perception and adjustment of the aircraft's attitude. To do this, we need a high frequency motherboard and some gyroscopic sensors to receive and process the aircraft attitude information and make feedback adjustments. This places high demands on the control section, and also on the mechanical side to ensure structural rigidity, reduce unpredictable jitter in the wings and other components, and thus reduce additional attitude adjustments. What's more, we also need to give more thought to the design of the rotatable propeller section. It is important to reduce the inertia of the rotating part while reducing the complexity of the structure and making it more reliable. For our aircraft, the arrangement of internal electronics and storage space has a huge impact on the center of gravity. While designing the aircraft structure with sufficient strength. We also consider the arrangement of the location of each electronic component, the heat dissipation of electronic components, sufficient storage space, certain water resistance, easier maintenance, etc. We believe that with the cooperation of the team members from different disciplines, we can be responsible for our own sub-projects and take full consideration of the design of other sub-projects to complete the overall design.


**VTOL Control Subsystem:** Different from the traditional sliding mode, vertical takeoff and landing makes our drone basically get rid of the dependence on the runway. This subsystem uses the GY-521 breakout of the MPU6050 6 degree of a freedom IMU. It gives adequate measurement precision to stabilize our drone. We use Teensy 4.0 as our microcontroller and use it for robotics, audio projects and Arduino applications (Teensyduino in our drone). After we assemble all the hardware stuff, we need to write the control code in Arduino/C++ language and uploaded them to the Teensy 4.0 board using Arduino IDE. Our drone will use the rotary lift fan to realize the vertical takeoff and landing of the aircraft by relying on the torque force output of the motor according to the feedback information of the IMU.

**Power Subsystem:** The power system will provide sufficient power for the takeoff and subsequent flight of the drone. It mainly includes two motors, two electric regulators, two propellers and batteries. In our VTOL drone, we plan to use Sunnysky brushless motors V2216, KV800, which could provide a maximum force of 1360N each. And according to the working current, we choose 30A electric regulators and 7.4V batteries.

**Mechanical Subsystem:** This system is the main structure of the drone, housing the rest subsystems of the drone. It is also a vital part, providing lift force when the drone is level. It consists of wings, fuselage and tail. In our drone, we plan to use lightweight PLA to 3D print the wings and other small part and laser cut the glass fiber plate to get the fuselage. Carbon fiber rods are also used in the wing parts to support the 3D printed wings.

**Adjustment of the center of gravity Subsystem:** This subsystem consist of a gyroscope and Teensy 4.0 board, which detects the position of the drone's center of gravity in real time and tranmits the information to the board. The board calculates and transmits the porper angle to the servos, so that the drone can fly soomthly in the air.

**Feedback Control Subsystem:** This subsysteem is aimed to ensure the drone mantains a stable flight path and does not deviate from its target orientation. The system works by comparing the current and target orientation and adjusting each propeller's angle according in order toreduce any error. A PID controller is used to determine the necessary adjustments, and it is then sent to the properllers via a servo motor in order to adjust the blades angles. This process is repeated contiually as the drone is flown.

**Flight mode adjustment Subsysytem:** This subsystem contains two servo, Teensy4.0 board, drone remote control and receiver. When the UAV recives a signal to switch from vertical flight mode to horizontal flight mode, it turns the angles od servos so that a horizontal force is generated to move the UAV in the horizontal direction.


- Flight performance: The drone should be able to take off and land vertically, as well as hover and maneuver smoothly in the air. It should also have a sufficient range and flight time to perform its intended function.

- Payload capacity: The drone should be able to carry the required payload, such as a camera, sensors, or delivery package, while maintaining stability and flight performance.

- Safety: The drone should be designed with safety in mind, including proper wiring, motor placement, and redundancy systems to prevent crashes or malfunctions.

- Reliability: The drone should be built with high-quality components and tested thoroughly to ensure that it operates reliably and consistently over time.

- Cost-effectiveness: The drone should be designed and built in a cost-effective manner, using affordable components and minimizing unnecessary features or complexity.


## ME STUDENT Yanzhao Gong:

- Print and assembly the mechanical parts of the drone.

- Participate in the design of the rotating mechanism of the two propellerso and the follow-up improvement.

## EE STUDENT Qianli Zhao:

- Adjust and control the drone propellers angle when the drone goes from vertical takeoff to horizontal flight.

- Use the gyroscope to detect and adjust the center of gravity of the drone in time.

## ECE STUDENT Li Jinke:

- Participate in the electrical design of the drone. Complete the welding, assembly and debugging of the electronic control hardware equipment of drone

- Implementation and debugging of drone vertical takeoff and landing control algorithm code

## ME STUDENT Tianqi Yu:

- The design of the fuselage part of the structure, the use of glass fiber plate, carbon fiber rods and PLA 3d printing with the design of lightweight, high-strength fuselage.

- Participated in the design of the rotating mechanism of the two propellers at the end of the wing.