FAI  Claim  Statement    
for    

World  Record,  Duration  in  Hover     World  Record,  Distance   Class  I-­‐E,  Human-­‐Powered  Rotorcraft  
   

Atlas  Human-­‐Powered  Helicopter   Attempt  of  June  13th,  2013  
    Submitted  by      

AeroVelo  Inc.  
   

DRAFT  
 

 

 

Contents    
1  Claim  Summary   2  Introduction            2.1  Project  Goal  &  Team            2.2  Description  of  Aircraft            2.3  Testing  Location   3  Measurement  Camera  Setup            3.1  Altitude  Camera            3.2  Position  Cameras   4  Flight  Summary   5  Methodology  &  Results            5.1  Position  &  Drift            5.2  Altitude            5.3  Distance            5.4  Time  of  Flight     3   3   3   4   5   5   6   6   7   8   8   11   12   12  

 

 

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1  Claim  Summary  

  This  claim  statement  pertains  to  two  World  Records  claimed  by  AeroVelo  Inc.,   performed  during  a  flight  attempt  of  the  Atlas  Human-­‐Powered  Helicopter  on  June   13th,  2013  at  16:43  UTC  (12:43  PM  EDT  local  time).  These  records  are  for  the  class  I-­‐ E  Human-­‐Powered  Rotorcraft.  This  attempt  was  under  the  control  of  the  Aero  Club   of  Canada.     The  two  records  claimed  are:     1) Duration  in  Hover,  64.11  seconds:  time  of  flight  of  the  rotorcraft,  with  the   additional  requirements  that  a  height  of  at  least  3m  must  be  reached  and  the   central  axis  of  the  helicopter  must  remain  within  a  designated  square  of  not   more  than  20m  on  a  side.   2) Distance,  6.93m:  The  distance  between  the  take-­‐off  point  and  landing  point  of   the  rotorcraft,  with  the  additional  requirement  that  a  height  of  at  least  2m   must  be  reached  during  the  flight.     Pilot  details  for  this  attempt  are  as  follows:     Name   Todd  Reichert   Gender   Male   Citizenship   Canadian   Sporting  License  Number   13-­‐024   Sporting  License  Expiry   31/12/2013   Sporting  License  Issuing  Authority   Aero  Club  of  Canada     This  attempt  was  made  in  accordance  with  the  regulations  of  the  FAI  Sporting  Code   including  the  provisions  of  5.2.2.3  on  Unsporting  Behavior.      

2  Introduction    
2.1  Project  Goal  &  Team  
  The  Atlas  Human-­‐Powered  Helicopter  Project  was  initiated  in  January  of  2012.  The   goal  of  the  project  was  to  win  the  American  Helicopter  Society  Sikorsky  Prize.   Established  in  1980,  this  prize  required  a  human-­‐powered  helicopter  to  fly  for  60   seconds  and  briefly  reach  an  altitude  of  3m,  while  a  reference  point  on  the   helicopter  remained  within  a  10m  x  10m  box.  The  records  submitted  for   consideration  in  this  Dossier  are  from  the  flight  that  was  officially  awarded  the   Sikorsky  Prize  by  the  AHS.    

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Advanced  design  and  configuration  analysis  was  concluded  in  April  of  2012,   performed  primarily  by  Todd  Reichert  (Chief  Aerodynamicist)  and  Cameron   Robertson  (Chief  Structural  Engineer).    Detailed  design  and  fabrication  were  led  by   Reichert  and  Robertson,  with  the  project  team  consisting  of  undergraduate   engineering  students  from  University  of  Toronto  and  a  variety  of  undergraduate   university  programs  across  Canada.     Initial  flight-­‐testing  began  in  mid-­‐August  of  2012,  with  several  days  of  final-­‐ assembly  and  integration  leading  into  low-­‐altitude  and  short  duration  flights  with   and  without  controls.  From  September  2012  through  January  2013  the  engineering   leads  conducted  several  experimental  studies  and  made  many  adjustments  to  the   aircraft  aerodynamics  and  structure.  Testing  resumed  with  7  individual  days  of   flight-­‐testing  throughout  the  spring  of  2013,  with  modifications  ongoing.  Two   crashes  resulting  in  substantial  damage  and  requiring  major  rebuilds  occurred   during  this  time.    Five  consecutive  days  of  testing  the  rebuild/modified  helicopter   culminated  in  the  attempt  of  June  13th.    

2.2  Description  of  Aircraft  

  The  Atlas  is  a  purely  human-­‐powered  helicopter  without  means  of  energy-­‐storage.   The  four  rotors  are  arranged  in  a  square  pattern  and  connected  by  a  wire-­‐braced   truss  structure,  with  the  pilot  suspended  on  an  upright  bicycle  frame  from  the   center.      The  General  Arrangement  Drawing  of  the  helicopter  as  originally  built  is  included   below.  As  of  the  flight  attempt  in  question  here  the  truss  arms  had  been  shortened   by  1.15m  each  (resulting  in  rotor  overlap)  and  the  control  surfaces  at  the  rotor  tips   had  been  removed,  substituted  for  a  leaning/thrust-­‐vectoring  control  system.     The  Atlas  structure  is  composed  primarily  of  prepreg  Carbon  Fiber  tubes  (for  the   rotors  and  truss)  and  wire-­‐braced  by  Vectran  braided  cord.  The  rotor  secondary   structure  including  ribs  and  skin  are  comprised  of  polystyrene  foam,  balsa  wood,   and  Melinex  polyester  film.  Connections  and  bonds  were  typically  made  with   Dupont  Kevlar  tow  and  either  cyanoacrylate  or  epoxy  adhesive.  Limited  amounts  of   aluminum  or  steel  hardware  were  used  throughout.     The  drivetrain  consists  of  an  upright  bicycle  suspended  at  the  center  of  the   helicopter.  The  pedaling  of  the  pilot  pulls  on  and  reels  in  four  Vectran  cords,  which   are  pre-­‐spooled  onto  each  of  the  four  rotor  hubs.  The  action  of  unspooling  the  cord   and  pulling  on  the  rotor  hub  drives  each  rotor  to  overcome  the  drag  force.  A  power-­‐ smoothing  flywheel  was  integrated  in  the  drivetrain,  connected  via  a  bicycle  chain   and  fixed  gearing  to  the  pedals.  This  direct  connection  allows  no  energy  to  be  stored   by  the  flywheel  prior  to  flight.    

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Cross bracing lines. Bottom diagonal and square bracing lines. Top bracing lines. Control canards twist rotor to increase or decrease lift. Control is achieved by differentially actuating opposing rotors.

SIDE ELEVATION
Rotors shown deformed under flight loads.

Pilot supported by 10 2.6 mm Vectran® lines. Longitudinal truss members. Shear truss members. 1.8 mm Vectran® shear lines. Rotor axle (non-turning).

ENLARGED DRIVE MECHANISM

Control line detangler.

0.4 mm Vectran® control lines. Pitch control on shifter lever. Roll control on brake levers.

0.063” Steel lift wire. Engine: 75 kg human. 0.0005” Mylar® skin. Polystyrene and balsa wood ribs.

Rotor assembly (turning).

CARBON FIBRE PRIMARY STRUCTURE
NCT301-1x HS40, high-modulus cfrp 150 g/m², 33% rw

13 tooth sprocket. 1.4 m Rotor Spool. 0.14 m Drive Spool. Power measurment pedals. 80 tooth chain ring. 1.14 mm Vectran® drive lines. Front

Tapered rotor spars:
Root diameter: 3.34” Tip diameter: 1.20” 4 layers, 20° wrap angle

PLANFORM VIEW

Expanded polystyrene riblets. Rotor spool: Kelvar® spoked carbon fibre rim. Polystyrene leading-edge sheeting. Tapered carbon fibre rotor spar. Kevlar® tow trailing edge.

Longitudinal truss members:
Largest diameter: 1.08” Smallest diameter: 0.54” 4 layers, 26° wrap angle

Drive line powers rotors by spooling from rotor spool to drive spool. Flywheel for smoothing pedal stroke: bicycle wheel with 8 aerospokes.

Shear truss members:
Largest diameter: 0.75” Smallest diameter: 0.675” 2 layers, 35° wrap angle

2.6 mm Vectran® bottom diagonal bracing lines.

Rotor Radius: Total Span: Actuator Disk Area: Empty Weight: All-Up Weight: Flight Power (0.5 m): Flight Power (3 m): Rotor Speed:

10.1 m 49.1 m 1281 m² 55.1 kg 130.1 kg 450 W 750 W 9.7 RPM
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1.2 mm Vectran® top and bottom square bracing lines. 1.2 mm Vectran® cross bracing lines. 3 4

ENLARGED ROTOR CROSS SECTIONS

2
HUMAN POWER ED HELICO PTER

4 BE12032HPH

HDPE control line sheath. Expanded polystyrene leading-edge sheeting. 1 lb/cu ft.

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Expanded polystyrene ribs, 1 lb/cu ft, 5 mm thick.

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2 BE10759HPH Laminated balsa cap strips, 2 x 1/32”. Carbon fibre tubular spars.

The Atlas Human-Powered Helicopter is designed to capture the AHS Sikorsky Prize 1 2 3 4 5
20 30 1 BE9270HPH Drawn by T.M. Reichert Kevlar® wrapped trailing edge. Balsa wood plates, 1/32”.

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20 Metres Feet

Flight  controls  were  initially  designed  as  a  collective  system  for  each  of  the  four   rotors.  The  lift  of  opposing  rotors  would  be  increased/decreased  in  order  to  tilt  the   angle  of  the  entire  helicopter,  resulting  in  a  small  sideways  component  of  the  rotor   lift  force.  This  method  of  control  proved  slow  and  ineffective,  also  leading  to   dangerous  imbalances  in  rotor  trim  resulting  in  several  broken  rotor  blades.    The   final  control  system  vectored  the  thrust  of  each  rotor  individually.  The  bottom  of   each  rotor  shaft  was  connected  via  a  Vectran  cord  to  the  bottom  of  the  bicycle  at  the   helicopter  center.  The  pilot  would  lean  the  bike  left/right  and  forward/back,  pulling   in  or  releasing  tension  on  each  of  the  four  rotor  lines.  Due  to  the  highly  flexible  truss   structure  and  rotor  shaft  attachment  points,  small  changes  in  control  line  tension   result  in  tilting  of  the  rotor  axis  of  rotation  and  thus  vectoring  of  the  thrust.  This   results  in  a  very  authoritative  and  instantaneous  sideways  control  force.     The  specifications  and  details  of  the  Atlas  as  of  June  13th  2013  are  shown  below.     Rotor  Radius   10.1m   Truss  Diagonal  Dimension   26.7m   Truss  Height   3.6m   Helicopter  Max  Diagonal  Dimension   46.9m   Total  Disk  Area   1,276m2   Rotor  RPM   9.7   Empty  Weight   55.3Kg   All-­‐Up  Weight   127.8Kg    

2.3  Testing  Location  

  All  flight-­‐testing  of  the  Atlas  Human-­‐Powered  Helicopter  was  conducted  at  The   Soccer  Centre  in  Vaughan,  Ontario,  Canada.  The  Soccer  Centre  contains  a  full-­‐size   indoor  soccer  field  comprised  of  Field  Turf  artificial  grass.     The  Observation  Plan  attached  to  this  document  contains  a  survey  of  the  field   performed  by  project  staff.  The  height  data  at  several  field  reference  points  (for   example  the  Altitude  Camera  and  Left  Altitude  Target  locations)  shows  a  field  slope   several  orders  of  magnitude  less  than  1:200  in  any  direction.      

3  Measurement  Camera  Setup  

  Video  and  still-­‐image  analysis  was  used  for  most  of  the  flight  data  measurement  of   this  attempt.  The  top-­‐view  layout  of  the  cameras  is  depicted  in  Figure  1.      

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Figure  1  -­‐  Measurement  camera  layout.  

 

   

3.1  Altitude  Camera    

Clearance  of  the  3m  altitude  threshold  was  determined  by  a  camera  and  two  targets,   each  located  at  3m  height  from  field  level.  In  a  still  image  taken  by  this  camera,  a  line   can  be  drawn  connecting  the  3m  centerlines  on  the  two  orange  targets.  This  line   indicates  a  level  plane  in  space  at  the  height  of  3m,  with  the  camera  sensor  and  the   two  targets  comprising  the  three  points  that  define  the  plane.  Any  object  in  the   image  above  the  drawn  line  is  above  three  meters  in  altitude,  and  any  object  below   the  line  is  below  3m.       Although  this  method  provides  an  absolute  reference  for  above/below  3m  in  height,   precise  altitude  data  must  be  determined  by  other  means  (as  explained  later).  

  3.2  Position  Cameras  

  Four  video  cameras  (and  backup  cameras)  were  arranged  on  tripods  at  roughly  4ft   in  height,  and  aimed  down  each  line  of  a  pre-­‐defined  10m  x  10m  box  centered  near   the  helicopter  starting  position.  This  setup  was  meant  to  facilitate  validation  of  the   6    

requirements  of  the  Sikorsky  Prize,  but  allowed  for  post-­‐flight  determination  of   position  even  if  the  helicopter  reference  point  (the  control-­‐line  attachment  point  at   the  bottom  of  the  bicycle)  left  the  pre-­‐defined  box,  as  was  the  case  in  the  attempt   submitted  here.      

4  Flight  Summary    

  The  flight  attempt  in  question  was  intended  as  a  flight  to  satisfy  all  three  constraints   of  the  Sikorsky  Prize.  The  profile  consisted  of  take-­‐off  and  rapid  (10  second)  climb   past  3m  in  height,  then  a  gradual  descent  through  60  seconds  duration  and  finally   touchdown.  The  pilot  was  controlling  the  helicopter  at  all  times  to  minimize  drift.     Takeoff  occurred  at  16:43  UTC  (12:43  PM  EDT  local  time)  on  June  13th  2013.  The   flight  lasted  for  64.11  seconds  with  the  lowest  part  of  the  helicopter  reaching  3.3m   in  height.  The  maximum  drift  was  9.8m,  with  the  distance  between  the  take-­‐off  and   touchdown  locations  (of  the  reference  location  at  the  central  axis  of  the  helicopter)   was  6.93m.       A  plot  of  Altitude  and  Input  Power  versus  time  is  shown  in  Figure  2.      

  Figure  2  -­‐  Altitude  and  power  versus  flight  time.  

 

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    5  Methodology  &  Results  

  For  the  FAI’s  use,  the  Excel  workbook  containing  all  the  data  analysis  (including   position  data)  is  appended  in  the  claim  dossier  submission.  

  5.1  Position  &  Drift  

  Horizontal  displacement  and  position  determination  throughout  the  flight  is   necessary  for  both  the  Sikorsky  Prize  (10m  x  10m  box  constraint)  and  the  FAI   Duration  in  Hover  record  (20m  x  20m  box  constraint).       With  still-­‐frame  images  extracted  from  the  position  video  cameras  described  above   (1  per  second),  simple  Cartesian  geometry  was  used  to  determine  the  location  of  the   reference  point  throughout  the  flight  (xt,  yt).  The  method  requires  the  known   location  of  two  video  cameras  (pointing  at  roughly  right  angles  to  each  other)  and   with  the  helicopter’s  starting  point  in  the  field  of  view  (x0,y0),  and  the  initial  location   of  the  helicopter  reference.  For  this  flight  the  Alpha  and  Delta  rotor  cameras  were   used,  with  positions  (xα,yα)  and  (xδ,yδ).  Using  the  relative  heading  of  the  reference   point  in  each  camera’s  field  of  view  to  the  starting  point  (θα  and  θδ),  a  line  is  plotted   on  the  x-­‐y  plane  from  each  camera.  By  calculating  the  intersection  of  these  two  lines   the  location  of  the  reference  point  is  determined.     The  method  is  illustrated  in  Figure  3.  

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  Figure  3  -­‐  Position  measurement  method  from  still  images.  

 

  As  an  indication  of  the  accuracy  of  this  method,  the  agreement  of  the  video-­‐ measured  position  described  above  and  the  final  position  as  measured  by  the   official  observer  (with  a  tape  measure)  was  0.11m  or  1.6%.     A  final  visual  confirmation  of  the  maximum  drift  can  be  estimated  from  the   overview  camera  filming  the  flight.  Figure  4  is  a  still  frame  taken  from  this  camera  at   the  point  of  maximum  drift  during  the  flight.  For  reference,  the  white  circle  at  center   field  is  9.1m  in  radius,  and  with  the  helicopter  starting  point  about  0.5m  right  of   center  the  total  drift  is  just  less  than  10m.  (This  image  appended  in  the  dossier   submission  for  closer  inspection)    

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  Figure  4  -­‐  Overview  camera  still-­‐frame  showing  maximum  drift.  

 

    Figure  5  is  the  final  plot  of  x-­‐y  position  of  the  helicopter  through  the  flight,  with   position  (0,0)  taken  as  the  starting  position  of  the  helicopter.  The  red-­‐lined  square   enclosing  the  flight  is  the  post-­‐defined  10m  x  10m  box  as  required  for  the  Sikorsky   Prize,  which  contains  the  reference  point  at  all  times  by  a  margin  greater  than  1m.    

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Figure  5  -­‐  Plot  of  x-­‐y  position  of  Atlas  during  flight.  

 

   

5.2  Altitude  

  Demonstration  of  3m  altitude  clearance  was  necessary  for  both  the  Sikorsky  Prize   and  Duration  in  Hover  record,  and  2m  clearance  necessary  for  the  distance  record.   The  description  of  the  Altitude  Camera  setup  above  also  explains  the  means  of   assessing  the  3m  height  clearance,  where  any  object  in  the  image  above  a  line  drawn   between  the  3m  targets  is  above  3m  in  height.     Figure  6  is  a  still  taken  from  the  3m  Altitude  Camera  at  the  peak  of  the  flight,   showing  all  parts  of  the  helicopter  clearly  above  the  3m  plane.  (This  image   appended  in  the  dossier  submission  for  closer  inspection)      

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  Figure  6  -­‐  Altitude  camera  still  image  showing  3m  clearance.  

 

    In  addition  to  demonstrating  clearance  of  3m,  the  altitude  of  the  helicopter  center   reference  point  was  determined  throughout  the  flight  (unofficially  and  for  general   interest).  This  was  done  by  taking  the  azimuth  angle  of  the  reference  point  in  the   altitude  camera  field-­‐of-­‐view  and  knowing  the  distance  of  the  reference  point  from   the  altitude  camera  (determined  using  the  x-­‐y  position  cameras  and  the  location  of   the  altitude  camera).  The  height  of  the  helicopter  is  determined  with  simple   trigonometry.    

5.3  Distance  

  The  take-­‐off  position  of  the  center  reference  point  of  the  helicopter  was  marked   with  tape  and  noted  by  the  official  observer  prior  to  beginning  the  flight  attempt.   The  landing  position  was  noted  by  the  official  observer  post-­‐flight.  The  distance   between  the  take-­‐off  and  landing  positions  was  determined  with  a  tape  measure  as   273”  (6.93m)    

5.4  Time  of  Flight  

  Time  of  flight  was  determined  via  video  footage  taken  of  each  of  the  four  rotor  hubs,   the  lowest  components  of  the  helicopter.  Footage  from  each  of  the  four  rotor   cameras  was  time-­‐synchronized  to  the  audio  cue  immediately  prior  to  the  flight.  The   take-­‐off  and  landing  time  of  each  rotor  was  determined  visually,  and  the  time   between  the  last  rotor  lift-­‐off  and  first  rotor  landing  taken  as  the  flight  time.   12    

  The  flight  time  was  determined  at  64.11  seconds.  Time-­‐synchronized  video  from   each  rotor  camera  is  included  with  this  dossier.  The  exact  times  of  take-­‐off  and   landing  are  noted  in  the  Flight  Data  Analysis  also  included  with  this  dossier.    

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