Jun 22, 2015 | By Alec

As 3D printing has well and truly found a place in the drone market, it is hardly surprising that major drone manufacturers are also turning to 3D printers to develop new drones. While several examples of this trend can be pointed to, none are as remarkable as a recent creation by Russian business Rostec. They have developed a 3D printed, truly multi-purpose drone that can take on just about any terrain challenge, whether its soft soil, marchland, water, snow and more.

3D printed mini version of this Duck drone

Weighing 3.8 kilograms and with a wingspan of 2.4 meters, this drone can reach top speeds of 100 km/h and fly for up to one and a half hours. According to Chief Project Engineer Vladimir Kutakhov, the company completed the transformation of a concept into a working prototype within just two and a half months, with production time around 31 hours. All in all, it took less than 200,000 rubles (about US $ 3700) to complete.

The specification data of the drone is not disclosed. However back in last April, a fascinating 3D printed drone called Chirok (Russian for duck) was presented by Vladimir Kutakhov at the second international conference Unmanned Aircraft 2015 in Moscow, with a paper entitled “The use of additive manufacturing in the creation of unmanned aerial vehicles”.

According to Kutakhov's report, Russian specialists are now actively working on promising projects in the field of unmanned aircraft, such as a two-ton, multipurpose hovercraft, which is being developed on the basis of the Chirok. The new 3D printed drone Chirok will use all the same technology, but in a number of ways the larger unit will be an improvement of the smaller prototype model.

This full-scale 3D printed drone has been forthcoming for a while, but is promising to be a huge people-carrying machine with military potential. The first full-size model of Chirok weighs 750 kg, with a first test flight planned for 2015. Little information about the Chirok’s system and power is currently known, as it is strictly confidential, but they are reported to be excellent machines for bring supplies to inaccessible areas. Flying at an altitude of 6000 meters, with a control range of 2500 km and a payload of 300 kg, it can even carry up to three passengers. The 3D printed Duck drone can be widely applied as a useful tool in environmental monitoring, fire detection, transportation, search and rescue and other civilian areas.




Posted in 3D Printing Applications



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