Mechanical engineering student creates a helicopter for functional use that can recharge via solar power.

Perching Helicopters

Small helicopters propelled by four rotors are used to collect data for agriculture and military uses. But they lack the battery power for continuous flight. Beau Freckleton, a student majoring in mechanical engineering, has been working on that problem for almost three years. He is creating a way helicopters can perch like birds, so they can recharge using solar energy and complete data collection in less time. Freckleton used a 3-D printer to create prototypes for the helicopter. He created landing gear that is light enough for the helicopter to carry and sturdy enough to support the weight.

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