This week’s selection is the Fastest Drone in the World by Luke Maximo Bell.
Bell, a YouTuber, set about to develop an incredibly fast drone, one capable of becoming breaking the official Guinness World Record.
FPV-style drones can be extremely quick, and there’s now the well established sport of drone racing, where drones are piloted over a course similar to auto racing.
Bell produced a couple of prototypes of a high speed drone without 3D printing. His first step was to figure out the base mechanical aspects. After a couple of notable crashes, Bell arrived at a mechanical design that seemed to work.
But then to make the drone fly even faster, it would have to use a lightweight fuselage that provided aerodynamic benefits. This would unlock the maximum speed for the design.
A fuselage with clear dome for front cameras was devised in a CAD tool. Then the parts were printed on no less than a Prusa Mini 3D printer, taking around 72 hours of print time. It’s quite amazing to note that such an incredible vehicle can be produced on such a modest desktop 3D printer.
At this point Bell decided to name the drone, and it was based on the Peregrine Falcon, the fastest moving animal on the planet. Combining that with the apparently randomly selected green fuselage material, they ended up with the “Peregreen” drone.
Bell then undertook a series of trials to see how fast the fully-equipped drone could fly. After multiple attempts, the drone actually hit an astounding 401km/hr (249mph).
This speed seems unreal, but it’s fully documented. However, the Guinness speed record is not just about hitting a peak speed. The official record is computed by averaging the speed over a 100m course in both directions. This eliminates the possibility of wind affecting the results. The resulting record speed was slightly less than 400km/hr, but still broke the previous record by a significant amount.
However, at a speed of 400km/hr, a drone traversing only 100m is quite fast. It takes only 0.9 seconds to cover that distance, so it was tricky to perform the measurement.
This is probably the fastest Design of the Week ever selected.