Autek Plan to Propel Drone Technology to Future With High-Efficiency Motor
Autek Propulsion Technologies Corporation, the spin-off from a defense contracting company started in 1973, holds the intellectual property rights for a motor which is lighter and much more efficient than any on the market.
Its CEO, Ronald A. Newcomb, then Adj. Professor at SDSU, was asked to visit Coleman University’s Electric Networked Vehicle Institute (“ENVI”) and see whether he could help improve their drone. Rod Weiss, the Institute’s Director, was shocked when he replied: “You are flying with a propeller invented by the Wright Brothers in 1905, and using a radial field motor invented by Nikola Tesla in 1985. We can do no less than reinvent drones.”
Mr. Weiss said, “But they are state-of-the-art.”
You are flying with a propeller invented by the Wright Brothers in 1905, and using a radial field motor invented by Nikola Tesla in 1985. We can do no less than reinvent drones.
“We can change that,” replied Professor Newcomb.
The drone mentor at the institute, Rob Gabula, heard the description of what he had done previously, and how that could apply here, and said, “That is the Holy Grail of the drone world.”
Autek LLC spun off Autek Propulsion Technologies Corporation a few months later.
Asked for his thoughts, SDSU Professor Eric Frost, Director of the Homeland Security Masters Degree program, stated, “You are focused on the only two fields left unimproved in drone technology – the motor and the propeller.”
When asked what was so revolutionary about the technologies, the CEO replied: “Radial field motors are infamous for inducing both electrical and magnetic eddy currents in surrounding metals, reducing flux and wasting energy by their geometry. The eddy currents compound the problem and wasted energy is converted to destructive heat which causes many drone motors to seize every day. This is why drones are so inefficient.”
Being transported by drones with motors that may seize would, of course, be catastrophic for people inside the drone. But he is also implying longer flight times by preserving battery life. This gives substance to his comment about reinventing drones.
Newcomb went on: “The fact that the propellers make noise is proof of inefficiencies, energy lost through noise. The Wright Brothers in 1905 borrowed the then century-old bionic wing design of Sir George Cayley and found them to be the wing design that best produced lift, but we have not continued far enough down the logic of the biomimetic research or that of fluid flow dynamics for the wings. We can change that, and then wing designs, but that will be after our crowdfunding campaign at Fundable,” he said, stating that campaign starts today.
He believes he can make a much more efficient motor and reduce the noise of future drones delivering packages on your street, extend flight times, make better propellers, and lastly, improve wing designs.
The future is looking more and more like the 1962 cartoon, The Jetsons.
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