Facebook makes design tools for open source solar aircraft

Aug

18

2018

Facebook has published its own software that can be used for the design of solar airplanes, or High Altitude Long Endurance or HAPS planes. The publication follows the announcement that the company will stop its own Aquila drone.

facebook-haps In a publication , the company writes that the publication wants to help the rest of the HAPS community to implement optimisations during the design process. The framework developed in Matlab, which can now be found on GitHub , should make it possible to quickly come up with a design. For this it uses, among other things, physical models. This should allow, for example, to take into account aerodynamics.

According to Facebook’s description, the software should be particularly useful at an early stage of the design process, for example by providing recommendations for the optimal size of an aircraft based on the latitude at which it must operate. For example, there is a difference whether you are making an airplane with a single or double tail, because the latter variant is heavier but also offers more stability.

Facebook announced in June that it will stop developing its own aircraft, including the Aquila drone, which was supposed to provide internet access from the air. It does want to continue working with partners such as Airbus on aircraft systems that provide remote areas with high-speed internet access.

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