Success for Herts aerospace engineering students at the British Model Flying Association Payload Challenge

 1 January 2024 28 June 2023
28 June 2023

Two groups of Aerospace Engineering students from the University of Hertfordshire took part in the British Model Flying Association (BMFA) Payload Challenge on 14-15 June at the BMFA National Centre near Grantham, with successful results for their model aircraft.

The groups secured 5th and 8th place in the competition out of a total of 18 organisations that entered. Within UK universities, the groups secured a 1st and 4th place finish, winning against Coventry University, the University of Manchester, Loughborough University and the University of London.

The British Model Flying Association is the UK’s national governing body for the sport of model aircraft flying. One of its key aims is to increase interest in aviation and engineering through education. The BMFA Payload Challenges require students to design, build and fly load-carrying model aircraft. The competitions have evolved over the years to stretch the abilities and ingenuity of participating students.

Herts students worked extremely hard throughout the academic year, including constructing their aircraft on campus after the end of their studies. Months of hard work and dedication, from not only the students but from the lecturers and technicians who assisted them, led to the construction of two beautiful UAVs, designed to carry a load of up to 4kg within the airframe.

As the team continue to have a high return rate of the aircrafts from the competition without crash landing, these aircraft will be proudly displayed at University Open Days and will become a permanent fixture on display in the Aerospace Simulator Lab on the College Lane campus.

Jacob Morewood, Senior Lecturer in Aerospace Engineering who supported the team, said: “I’d like to thank the Academic Supervisors, Peter Thomas and Joanna Rawska for their efforts in guiding the teams through the design and their FYPs. In addition, I’d like to thank the technical team, especially Pegah Janbakhsh and James Lane who have been helping guide the students – as well as the SPECS Proctors who made themselves available in the last few weeks in the lab, monitoring this work.

“Finally, a special thanks to Steve Lines who continues to be invaluable in this process. With his many years of experience in building model aircraft, it is Steve’s guidance that allows the students to achieve highly in the competition, guiding them through the tips and tricks to building these aircraft.”


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