Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

An unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), commonly known as a drone, unmanned aircraft system (UAS), or by several other names, is an aircraft without a human pilot aboard. The flight of UAVs may operate with various degrees of autonomy: either under remote control by a human operator, or fully or intermittently autonomously, by onboard computers.

Compared to manned aircraft, UAVs are often preferred for missions that are too “dull, dirty or dangerous” for humans. They originated mostly in military applications, although their use is expanding in commercial, scientific, recreational, agricultural, and other applications, such as policing and surveillance, product deliveries, aerial photography, agriculture and drone racing. Civilian drones now vastly outnumber military drones, with estimates of over a million sold by 2015.

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Project Details

  • Category: Remote Aircraft
  • Project Start Date:

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (Drones)

Donix has been engaged by Clients requiring Aerial Surveillance and mapping for their ongoing enterprises. Research and development around various remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) was undertaken and this has lead to requests from further clients. The production of a Hex-copter DT M6 1A (drone) and Fixed Wing Platform DTF-2 being the most recognized result of this work. Fixed wing RPAS provide for extended range but are limited in their proximity and stability usage when compared to rotor copter platforms. Both the DT F-2 fixed wing UAV and the DT M6 1A Hex-copter are well suited to sensitive electronic payload requirements with its low vibration and low noise flight profiles. The modular payload concept greatly extends their range of applications, ranging from constant airborne video imaging over IR sensors up to measurement and detection of hazardous and radio active materials. Battery and payloads can be changed rapidly and without special tools vastly improving the vehicles time in the air abilities. Camera gimbal allows for 360 degree movement in the pan axis, 180 degrees in the pitch axis.

fixed-wing uav drone
Fixed-Wing DTF-2
drone quadcopter
prototype rotorcraft
Prototype Rotorcraft

Aerial Surveillance

This project was conceived way back in 2000 as a means to survey landscape in non urban areas. It subsequently found uses in the film industry. Donix has designed a multi axis stabilized Camera mount which forms part of a flying platform. The system was designed as a service to the local movie industry. The project is still ongoing as it is a multi disciplinary project drawing expertise in mechanical, electrical engineering and software engineering The further uses of such a system have been explored by utilities such as Eskom for power line maintenance, as currently they use manned helicopters.

multi axis stabilized Camera mount
Multi Axis Stabilized Camera Mount
electro-optic camera gimbal
Electro-Optic Gimbal
2 Axis Stabilized camera Gimbal
2-Axis Stabilized Gimbal