New Test Bench Developed for Unmanned Helicopters

By Mike Ball / 12 Mar 2020
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Alpha Unmanned Systems HALT helicopter test bench

Alpha Unmanned Systems, a developer of industrial-grade gasoline-powered helicopter drones, has announced that it has developed a new High Accelerated Lifetime Testing (HALT) solution for the company’s engines and transmissions. The new test bench will perform tests in realistic near-flight environments for significantly longer periods of time, leading to greater fault identification and hence more reliable platform design and manufacture.

Testing and validation of engine and transmission systems, which are especially critical for helicopter platforms, are time-consuming and costly, and industrial-grade systems must be tested for thousands of cycles during development. HALT will be able to test multiple engine and transmission loads in a precisely controlled environment, and will also simulate endurance and life cycle tests in near-flight conditions.

The HALT will also be used to define the maintenance periods of Alpha’s newest helicopter platform, due to be released in the near future, and to execute the STANAG defined engine endurance tests and fine-tune the fuel injection system.

Álvaro Escarpenter, CTO and co-founder of Alpha Unmanned Systems, commented: “Testing is critical for flight reliability and safety. The incorporation of the HALT will dramatically increase the testing hours that Alpha Engineers can use to improve design and manufacturing. We expect to dramatically improve our platform quality and reliability through this innovative and necessary tool.”

Posted by Mike Ball Mike Ball is our resident technical editor here at Unmanned Systems Technology. Combining his passion for teaching, advanced engineering and all things unmanned, Mike keeps a watchful eye over everything related to the unmanned technical sector. With over 10 years’ experience in the unmanned field and a degree in engineering, Mike’s been heading up our technical team here for the last 8 years. Connect & Contact