In September of 2008 I went to Dalby Australia to test fly our new version of the EZI-NAV autopilot in BOOMERANG III, one of our single boom UAV test beds. I had the help of Ross Milne, his son Geordie Milne, Bob Young and Rob Carroll.
The test program went so well we completed all planed tasks well ahead of schedule and had a bit of time on our hands.
Geordie, who is an out standing RC pilot was just about to finish his last year of college and indicated to me that he liked the simplicity of the BOOMERANG III design but would prefer a twinboom rather than the single boom design of BOOMERANG III.
So we started doing sketches on scrap paper. We took the basic fuselage shape of BOOMERANG III, added a 3 piece wing with a bolt on center section and plug on wings. The spar tube runs from the center of the left wing through the center wing section to the center of the right wing. We then took the rudder and elevator servo mount design of BOOMERANG III, at the center front of the horizontal stabilizer, where the servos straddle the single center tail boom and moved them to the left and right tail booms of the GALAH. This became the basic design concept for the GALAH UAV.
The advantage of having the wing unbolt from the top of the fuselage is that the wing can be removed without having to remove the tail booms. On the other hand the wing and booms can be removed as a complete unit. The concept of having left and right plug-in wing panels is that the outer wing panels can be removed and the airframe can be transported as if it were a conventional fuselage. This was one of the major reasons that I developed the single boom design of the BOOMERANG III, for the simplicity of transport and assembly.
I was very impressed with Geordie's skill in using SolidWorks, within a few hours he had the first of a series of 3 view drawing of the GALAH. We discussed changes and added new ideas until a basic design was agreed upon. Shortly thereafter I had to return to the U.S. and Geordie continued on with the design and drawings for the GALAH. From time to time he would email me drawings and any improvements that he had made to the basic design. One of the improvements Geordie decided on was to make the left and right outer wing panels the same so either wing panel could be used on either side of the airframe, thus reducing the complexity of the wing design and reducing the number of different components that had to be produced to build the wings.
Later he added a removable nose section and a separate center fuselage section.
With the modification from a one piece to a two piece fuselage, only a damaged nose or center fuselage section would require replacement. This also allows for quick changing of payloads and engines. If you want to change the payload you simply change out the nose section and use the original center fuselage section and engine. If you need more power then change the center fuselage section and engine. The concept is that the user would have spare noses and center fuselage sections with deferent payloads and engines already installed. To me this was a brilliant design concept and a major time saver.
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