Drawings by Leonardo da Vinci/Wikimedia Commons
In one of his drawings, the Renaissance genius left a sketch of an airplane of an unusual shape, not only for that time, but also for modern times. It is propelled by a propeller that looks like a corkscrew.
Does it fly?
Only five centuries later it became clear that Leonardo designed the prototype of modern helicopters. A team of engineers from the University of Maryland set out to test his calculations and create a working aircraft based on them.
- One of the team members, Austin Pret, achieved the greatest success by creating a quadcopter drone with rotors based on Leonardo da Vinci’s design.
- It was called the Crimson Spin and has already made several short flights.
- Pret presented a real-life example last week to attendees of the Transformative Vertical Flight 2022 annual conference in San Jose.
- The technical capabilities of Crimson Spin are still modest, but in the future, using this technology, you will be able to create a full-fledged single-seat aircraft.
Demonstration of a working copy of the device according to the drawings of Vinci: video
It should be noted that the Crimson Spin is not a complete copy of a drawing by Leonardo da Vinci. The famous inventor only had one big screw, while the modern copy has four – like the drones we know. Development team members admit they didn’t believe in the idea at first and were quite surprised when computer simulations and 3D-printed screw prototypes showed their effectiveness.
Crimson Spin, from designs by Leonardo da Vinci/Photo by Austin Pret/University of Maryland
Leonardo da Vinci himself had no chance to bring the idea to life – in the 15th century there were no resources for this. Austin Pret manufactured the machine using aluminum, plastic, electric motors, computer control systems and designed the machine using a CAD system (Computer Aided Design and Calculation System). computer).