second generation - advanced embodiment concept
This product had been designed as a result of Alec Momont’s vision of using drones for a noble purpose and was specifically designed to increase the survival chance of cardiac arrhythmia victims by fast aerial delivery of an AED.
The design that was presented is an elaboration on the first concept designed by Alec Momont. A redesign was proposed to overcome the first generation’s hurdles. The new design has been extensively tested and evaluated using two prototypes; one for interaction and one for flight.
The final Ambulance Drone product proposal utilizes an angle between the arms and the body of 70 degrees, which is unique in the world of drones. It does this to be able to reach speeds over 180 km/h to increase the survival chance of cardiac arrhythmia patients to up to 80%. The product guides its users with live communication through a custom-designed interface in a way that has resulted in record-breaking treatment speeds of down to 42 seconds, while all necessary components for the drone to achieve the aforementioned feats, including a live AED, have been fitted inside a drone which can be carried by its user with just one hand.
This design has been optimized in the fields of speed of flight and speed of use, and has the proven potential to save the lives of thousands, and can be seen as the ultimate example of using drones for good.
For this student project in the master course ‘Advanced Embodiment Design’ two working prototypes were presented; one to demonstrate the flying capabilities and one to demonstrate the user interaction with the drone on the scene of a cardiac arrest. As part of the list of deliverables, a movie was made to summarise the process. At time of the deadline, due to the complexity of the system the flying prototype was not fully working and therefore footage is missing in the movie. However afterwards with a small(er) team, we continued the work in our free time to get the drone fully working.
Integrated Product Design
A total of 12 students worked on the redesign of the ambulance drone, divided in two teams to work on respectively the body and the motor frame. I worked on among other on the main body and led the coordination, making sure all decisions were centrally verified and sub assemblies would fit (and function).
Chassis design - personal contribution
A tangible result of my role was the design of the chassis; a single part carbon fibre component. Its main two functionalities, with most other chassis, is to provide a rigid base for construction and to serve as a skeleton to which components are attached.
When most important volume-determining components were chosen, it created the opportunity to design the chassis. A hexaform was the main inspiration so it would withstand the forces that occur during the flight. But also from the forces that occur during landing, thereby protecting the sensitive components inside. The hexaform houses a battery inside and provides additional construction features.
Carbon fibre was chosen due to its excellent strength and stiffness at low weight. For building a flying prototype, I designed and manufactured the moulds to laminate the chassis ourselves. This can be seen in the video shown earlier. In addition, we also laminated the aerodynamic shell ourselves. However the shells were laminated with an aramide fibre in order to avoid interference with the radio transmitters.