St Thomas the Apostle College 2016

Prince Alabi, Stephen Bekibele

building an amphibious drone

Their story, in their words…

“During the course of the summer holiday we spent our time building a quadcopter out of readily available parts such as PVC piping and swimming floats. The project was a success although it didn’t come easily as we encountered several issues along the way.

The process of building the drone required constant testing, tweaking and redesigning to get it to fly and float properly. There were several issues we had to get through which required us to use what we have learnt from school as well as using the internet to troubleshoot and find out new information which aided us in building the drone.

One problem we had was the drone would constantly spin out of control as the hot glue used to secure the motors to the drone would often warm up and melt because of the heat that the motors produced. This caused several crashes and on one occasion the drone was flown out of sight and range. Whilst we were testing the drone’s capabilities to land on water it ended up flipping over into a half submerged state. This required one of us to go in and get the drone. This taught us to be patient and not rushing into things. Fortunately, the drone was unharmed due to the impermeable nature of the material encasing the electronics. To prevent any further damage we burried the main electronics section of the drone in rice to absorb all the excess water.

We would say this project was a “flying success” and it was able to impress a lot of people and often people would approach us to compliment the drone for looking spectacular. In the future we might add a live camera, enabling fpv thus allowing us to get good areal and aquatic views with the drone.”