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Unsettled Topics in UAV Icing – UBIQ employee writes a key report for the industry

Richard Hann at the wind tunnel in VTT, Technical Research Centre of Finland.


The latest must-read in UAV icing is written by Richard Hann, System Analyst, and Aerodynamics Expert at UBIQ Aerospace. His report “Unsettled Topics in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Icing” was recently published in the SAE EDGE™ research report series.

SAE International is a global association of more than 128 000 engineers and experts in the aerospace and mobility industries. The SAE EDGE™ Research Reports focus on unsolved issues within the most significant unsettled technologies.

– This report is aimed for a large audience, from UAV manufacturers and UAV operators to legislative bodies like the Federal Aviation Administration. It will raise awareness for icing as a severe limitation for UAVs and Urban Air Mobility, said Richard Hann, the main author of the report.

Richard Hann is one of the world's leading research scientists within icing on unmanned aircraft. In July, he will defend his Ph.D. thesis on the topic at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU).

The report states that icing is a key limitation to the operational envelopes of UAVs and that there currently is a lack of tools and technologies to deal with the icing hazards. It also identifies key topics for further pursuit short and long term. Among the short term, recommendations are the development of robust ice-detection systems for UAVs, as well as the transfer of mature ice protection system technologies from manned aviation to UAVs.

Among the long term recommendations is the maturation of novel ice protection systems for UAVs with the aim to reduce weight, power, and cost; as well as the implementation of internationally standardized regulations for UAVs in icing conditions.


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