Created a methanol fuel cell that extends the flight of the drone up to 12 hours

Created a methanol fuel cell that extends the flight of the drone up to 12 hours

Doosan DS30: 2-Hour Flight Time with Hydrogen Fuel Cell

Scientists have developed an efficient methanol fuel system that allows the drone to fly for 12 hours.

The main problem with modern drones powered by lithium-ion batteries is their short maximum flight times. Even professional devices can stay in the air for about half an hour. Therefore, researchers and engineers are looking for alternatives to power their systems..

Team of scientists from the Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics, together with Feye UAV Technology, have created a prototype of the FY-36 unmanned aerial vehicle. Despite the weight of 15 kg and impressive dimensions, it is capable of speeds up to 90 km / h and continuously fly for up to 12 hours. This is made possible by its hybrid aerodynamic shape and specially designed fuel cell..

According to the team, the principle of such a battery is quite simple. When colorless alcohol flows through the cells of an element, its molecules come into contact with the catalyst and decompose into carbon dioxide and water. During this process, a huge amount of energy will be released, which feeds the system..

It took scientists about 10 years to develop an efficient methanol-fueled device, and it took another two years to adapt it to a UAV. Methanol can potentially store 70 times more energy than lithium-ion systems, they said..

FY-36 has already completed 15 test flights, but tests are still ongoing as the team wants to collect more data. However, the first results are encouraging.

Feye UAV Technology expects that upon completion of all validations, it will be able to commercialize the technology and offer the market for rugged drones at competitive prices. The model under test was originally designed for testing power lines, search and rescue operations, geological mapping, military reconnaissance and other tasks where flight time is one of the key factors..

Created a methanol fuel cell that extends the flight of the drone up to 12 hours

Recall that Turkey will be the first country to adopt drones with a machine gun.

text: Ilya Bauer, photo: Feye UAV Technology