## Complete engineering model of autonomously powered corona-dischargepropelled aircraft

Technical note
by Evgenij Barsoukov

June 2002, Daejeon, Korea

Courtesy of Evgenij Barsoukov
Created on June 12, 2002 - JLN Labs - Updated on June 12, 2002

Original document at : http://sudy_zhenja.tripod.com/lifter_theory/self_powered/self_powered_note.htm

Introduction
As everybody in Lifter mailing list are well avare, the work on corona-discharged aircraft has moved from the stage of the demonstrating the basic ability to develop thrust to development of autonomously powered aircraft, which requires clear understanding of technical improvements needed to achieve the flight powered with on-board power supply. Recently developed by author engineering model of basic lifter  allowed to predict correctly thrust and voltage/current relation of all existing externally powered lifter models described in Jean-Louis Naudin's Lifter web-site. The natural next step is to derive relations combining such key engineering characteristics as power density of autonomous power supply and specific weight of wire/collector electrode stack with the lenght of electrode stack and distance between corona-wire and collector which would provide sufficient efficiency and power for self-propelled flight. This is the topic of this communication.

Theoretical background
Following equation describing thrust/current and curren/voltage relatioin of coron-discharge propelled device, derived by author in http://sudy_zhenja.tripod.com/lifter_theory  based on voltage-current relation in electrostatic dust precipitators developed by Copperman (P. Cooperman, Theory for Space-Charge-Limited Current with Application to Electrical Precipitation, Trans. Amer. Inst. Elec. Eng. Part 1, vol. 79, pp. 47-50, 1960.) are used in derivation below.

Conclusions

• Calculations presented in this communication show that for any given power supply power density there is such value of electrode stack density, below which corona-discharge device is capable of autonomously powered flight.
• Equations for calculating all design parameters for autonomous lifter with any power-supply weight and power density are developed and can be used by designers of such devices.
• Thrust/power efficiency of such self-powered device (7.3 gm/W) exceed that for other existing vertical takeoff aircraft such as helicopter, which is usually below 3 gm/W.
• Considerable reduction of electrode stack specific weight compared to existing Lifters is required to achieve autonomous flight. Such improvement could be achieved by using mesh-configuration of both corona and collector electrodes, and cylindrical collectors made from lightweight inflated tubes with vapor-deposited layer of conducting metal such as Al.
• Large size of required electrode stack (above 2 km for 700 gm power-supply) indicates that investments and pilot-line level production capability would be needed to organize manufacturing of collector tubes needed to prepare self-flying prototype

Additional references
MathCad work-sheet with all equations used in this note can be downloaded here. To see it you can dowload MathCad 8 viewer from ftp://ftp.rzbd.haw-hamburg.de/pub/files/mcexp802.exe.

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