Unmanned Systems Technology 026 I Tecdron TC800-FF I Propellers I USVs I AUVSI 2019 part 1 I Robby Moto UAVE I Singular Aircraft FlyOx I Teledyne SeaRaptor I Simulation & Testing I Ocean Business 2019 report

6 Mission-critical info for UST professionals Platform one Engineers at the University of Manchester and BAE Systems have developed a prototype aircraft that can be manoeuvred using supersonic air rather than control surfaces (writes Nick Flaherty). The Magma UAV demonstrated two flow control technologies that can be used for platform designs in the future. The first takes air from the aircraft’s engine and blows it supersonically through narrow slots around a specially shaped feature on the tailing edge of the single wing to control the aircraft. This wing circulation control technique removes the need for moving control surfaces, allowing the airframe to be lighter and simpler. The second technique, fluidic thrust vectoring, controls the aircraft by blowing air jets inside the nozzle to deflect the exhaust jet and generate a thrust that can be directed as an additional control mechanism. The wing circulation and fluidic thrust vectoring exhaust control devices were made from metal using an additive manufacturing process that achieved a wall thickness of 0.5 mm. The technologies could also improve an aircraft’s stealth, as they reduce the number of gaps and edges that currently make aircraft more observable on radar.  “This is part of a long-standing effort to change the way aircraft can be controlled, going all the way back to the invention of wing warping by the Wright brothers,” said Bill Crowther, leader of the Magma project at The University of Manchester. “We made our first fluidic thrust vectoring nozzle from glued-together bits of plastic nearly 20 years ago, and tested it on a hairdryer fan. BAE Systems is 3D-printing our components out of titanium, and we are flight testing them on the back of a jet engine in an aircraft designed and built by the project team.” Airborne vehicles Future of flight control? The Magma unmanned aircraft has no moving control surfaces June/July 2019 | Unmanned Systems Technology