4.3 sUAS Performance

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Load Factors: sUAS maneuverability significantly impacts the payload (Load Factor) of an UA which could ultimately affect the performance of the aircraft. It is the Remote PIC’s responsibility to be familiar with load factors and understand the impact it has on sUAS operations

Insert Graphic 1 – Equipment manufacturers owner’s manuals will inform the Remote PIC the G-units the UA is rated for.

Straight from the FAA – The remote pic should be mindful of the increased load factor and its possible effects on the air crafts structural integrity and the results of an increase in stall speed.

Payloads reduce the overall flight performance in almost every aspect and sUAS operations that exceed the maximum weight limitations can compromise the structural integrity of an UA.

Factors that may require a reduction in weight prior to the operation of an sUAS are high density altitude, high elevations, high air temperatures, high humidity, runway / launch area length, surface, slope, surface wind, and presence of obstacles.

Performance deficiencies consist of reduced rate of climb, lower max altitude, shorter endurance, and reduced maneuverability.

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Stalls and Aerodynamics – (Straight from the FAA) Due to the low operating environment, consideration should be given to ensure aircraft control is maintained and the aircraft is not operated outside its performance limits.

It is the Remote PIC’s responsibility to be familiar with Aerodynamic Stalls (separation of airflow resulting in loss of lift) which is commonly associated with load factor.

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CG Performance Characteristics

Forward CG- higher stall speed, slower cruise speed, and more stable

AFT CG- lower stall speed, faster cruise speed, less stable