Journal article Open Access

Bio-Inspired Morphing Tail for Flapping-Wings Aerial Robots Using Macro Fiber Composites

Vicente Perez-Sanchez; Alejandro E. Gomez-Tamm; Emanuela Savastano; Begoña C. Arrue; Anibal Ollero

The aim of this work is to present the development of a bio-inspired approach for a
robotic tail using Macro Fiber Composites (MFC) as actuators. The use of this technology will allow
achieving closer to the nature approach of the tail, aiming to mimic a bird tail behavior. The tail
will change its shape, performing morphing, providing a new type of actuation methodology in
flapping control systems. The work is intended as a first step for demonstrating the potential of
these technologies for being applied in other parts of the aerials robotics systems. When compared
with traditional actuation approaches, one key advantage that is given by the use of MFC is their
ability to adapt to different flight conditions via geometric tailoring, imitating what birds do in
nature. Theoretical explanations, design, and experimental validation of the developed concept using
different methodologies will be presented in this paper.

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