Otago Polytechnic
Drone thumbnail APC 0022 Adam Greer

Project Drone

A problem-solving approach helped a Mechanical Engineering student work through prototype issues.

Many of the drones on the market currently are expensive because they include a built-in camera. Student Adam Greer identified a niche in the drone market for customers who already have a GoPro or similar action camera.  For his research project Adam set about designing and building a drone that would be:

  • Lightweight and strong
  • Aerodynamically efficient
  • User-friendly to operate
  • Easily portable and
  • Keep a camera stable

Adam used an iterative design process which included building prototypes. He had issues with the quality and compatibility of the parts he sourced, but he was able to fly his final prototype and record from the camera.

Adam has identified further developments which would improve performance, for example using a bigger battery and stronger lighter materials, although this will also add to the cost. He especially enjoyed the problem-solving involved in the project and is considering starting a company to hopefully finish product development and take it to market.

January 2020

Image credit: Adam Greer, used with permission