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Aerospace 2017, 4(1), 4; doi:10.3390/aerospace4010004

SMA-Based System for Environmental Sensors Released from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle

1
Aeronautics Systems Engineering Department, Centro Italiano Ricerche Aerospaziali, Via Maiorise, Capua 81043, Italy
2
Adaptive Structures Department, Centro Italiano Ricerche Aerospaziali, Via Maiorise, Capua 81043, Italy
3
Space Propulsion Facilities, Centro Italiano Ricerche Aerospaziali, Via Maiorise, Capua 81043, Italy
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Rafic Ajaj
Received: 10 October 2016 / Revised: 16 January 2017 / Accepted: 18 January 2017 / Published: 24 January 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Adaptive/Smart Structures and Multifunctional Materials 2016)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [11960 KB, uploaded 24 January 2017]   |  

Abstract

In the work at hand, a shape memory alloy (SMA)-based system is presented. The system, conceived for releasing environmental sensors from ground or small unmanned aerial vehicles, UAV (often named UAS, unmanned aerial system), is made of a door, integrated into the bottom of the fuselage, a device distributor, operated by a couple of antagonistic SMA springs, and a kinematic chain, to synchronize the deployment operation with the system movement. On the basis of the specifications (weight, available space, energy supply, sensors size, etc.), the system design was addressed. After having identified the main system characteristics, a representative mock-up was manufactured, featuring the bottom part of the reference fuselage. Functionality tests were performed to prove the system capability to release the sensors; a detailed characterization was finally carried out, mainly finalized at correlating the kinematic chain displacement with the SMA spring temperature and the supplied electrical power. A comparison between theoretical predictions and experimental outcomes showed good agreement. View Full-Text
Keywords: shape memory alloy springs; UAV; sensor release shape memory alloy springs; UAV; sensor release
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Pellone, L.; Ameduri, S.; Favaloro, N.; Concilio, A. SMA-Based System for Environmental Sensors Released from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. Aerospace 2017, 4, 4.

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