BS in Aerospace Engineering
Aerospace Engineering Department
This report specifies the purpose, assembly, operation, and data collection of a testing apparatus to characterize small electric aircraft propulsion systems designed for commercial use. This apparatus was constructed with the goal of determining overall system characteristics and efficiencies. The apparatus was pushed to a safety limit as deemed by advisor John Dunning and the results of the experiment were an output power of 3.2kW (25% of max rated power) and a system efficiency of 58.6%, both of which occurred at 2200 RPM. Currently the apparatus needs improvement. It should have an upgraded structure to mount to (instead of the table in use now), a wind tunnel large enough to fit the system inside (enabling propeller efficiency calculation), and a more robust and less noisy DAQ system. With all those things in place this system could have a major impact on Cal Poly’s Aerospace Department, because as of right now it does not have a single electric aircraft propulsion system.