TBP9 UAV Ground Control Station UAV Autopilot
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Tactical 1.8 Meter UAV (TBP1.8)

I have been working for several years on the design of a twin boom pusher planform that will serve the autopilot community.

This airframe is designed to meet the following criteria:

  • Fast and easy field assembly
  • Easily transportable
  • Low manufacturing costs
  • Efficient airframe able to employ a variety of propulsion units
  • Low cost camera gimbals
  • Modular design facilitates field replacement of spares

The TBP1.8 fits into a 36 ” x 16” x 5” cardboard container for storage and transport.

Launching and recovery is always a consideration. Frequently UAV operations are conducted without the benefit of a prepared runway for launching and landing. The airframe is designed to accommodate wheels for those fortunate occasions where a runway is available. I have only a short stretch of dirt to get airborne. I use a bungee/dolly that accelerates the UAV to airspeed in about 20 feet. I have also launched the UAV using a catapult and a bungee only method. The airframe is designed to handle rough landing through the use of frangible construction techniques and a unique shock absorption wing mounting method.

Power is normally supplied by an electric motor. Internal combustion engines can be substituted.

The UAV is comprised of three major components.

  • Wing center section
  • Tail booms
  • Pod

The wing center section is designed with an emphasis on crash survival. All servos are standard sized for maximum gear strength.

The tail booms slide into receptor sockets in the wing center section and attach to each other with a single screw.

The pod contains the payload, avionics and propulsion unit.   The camera gimbals is a simple two servo system that will rotate the camera through 90 degrees of pitch and 360 degrees of yaw.

Outer wing panels are attached to the wing center section to complete the assembly.