Alternative power-plants for micro aerial vehicles (MAV)

A. Lidor, D. Weihs, E. Sher

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Recent years have seen an increased effort in research and development of remotely-controlled and autonomous micro aerial vehicles (MAV). While there are many different challenges in the development of MAVs, one of the severe limiting factors in terms of weight is the energy source. Most of the MAVs developed up to date are based on electrochemical batteries as power-plants. In the present study, several potential alternative power-plants and energy storage systems are examined: miniature internal combustion engines (ICE), carbon nano-tubes (CNT), fuel cells, shape memory alloys (SMA), synthetic muscles, flywheels, elastic elements, pneumatics, thermal systems, radioisotope thermoelectric generators, and phase change materials. The results are applied to typical fixed wing and rotary wing MAV configurations with several mission profiles. We conclude that for the near future, the most promising alternative power-plant method is the phase-change materials. Future promising methods are fuel cells, and for the far future, carbon nano-tubes and synthetic muscles.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication53rd Israel Annual Conference on Aerospace Sciences 2013
Number of pages20
StatePublished - 21 Aug 2013
Event53rd Israel Annual Conference on Aerospace Sciences 2013 - Tel-Aviv and Haifa, Israel
Duration: 6 Mar 20137 Mar 2013

Publication series

Name53rd Israel Annual Conference on Aerospace Sciences 2013


Conference53rd Israel Annual Conference on Aerospace Sciences 2013
CityTel-Aviv and Haifa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering


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