Low-speed computational aerodynamics and stability analysis of fuselage modifications in support of autonomous aircraft

As drones continue to gain traction as a tool for cargo delivery, engineers and regulators must seek new ways to mitigate the risk of developing ever larger aircraft. This project will conduct aerodynamic simulations and performance analysis of a pre-certified recreational aircraft that has been hypothetically retrofitted to operate as a cargo drone. Using Computational Fluid Dynamics and programming tools, this project will yield a novel and optimized cargo bay expansion aboard a Quad City Challenger II airplane in support of future operational trials with Transport Canada. The bay design will maximize cargo capacity while minimizing drag, dry weight, and impact on aircraft stability. By verifying designs prior to flight testing, this project is breaking new ground in the application of existing CFD techniques to enable a new generation of large cargo drones through safe, cost-effective, expedient engineering practices.

Faculty Supervisor:

Jean-Pierre Hickey


Jeremy Chan-Hao Wang




Engineering - mechanical


Professional, scientific and technical services


University of Waterloo



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