USC’s AeroDesign Team wins Best Design Report award, places 4th overall at the annual AIAA Design Build Fly competition

The USC AeroDesign Team and its model, ExSCalibur at the 2019 AIAA Design Build Fly Competition in Tucson. PHOTO/USC AERODESIGN TEAM

The USC AeroDesign Team (USC ADT) earned the award for Best Design Report and took 4thplace overall in the annual American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Design Build Fly (AIAA DBF) competition in Tucson, Arizona.

The event, which took place from April 11-14, challenged just over 100 teams to design an aircraft able to fulfill requirements specific to aircraft carriers, including carrying a rotating radome, folding wings for storage, and achieving takeoff from a 10-ft ramp. Seventy-seven teams attended the event in Tucson; the winning team, Ljubljana (Slovenia), set the bar by safely flying 17 stores for M3, and then attempted a 19 store flight complete with acrobatics.  The remaining top teams all attempted between 11 and 14 stores. USC ADT proved exceptional once again this year, completing M1 (delivery mission), M2 (reconnaissance mission), M3 (attack mission) and the Ground Mission (flight deck maintenance and observation) on the first day of the event.

The USC ADT team is composed of 30 to 40 students from a variety of departments at USC, including students from Aerospace & Mechanical Engineering, the Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Computer Science at USC Viterbi. Its winning report, submitted in February, provided 60 pages of detail on their aircraft design, tests, and rational behind all components. The team will begin preparation for AIAA DBF 2020 starting in the fall.