Local Company Leading Work on Unmanned Aircraft

Local Company Leading Work on Unmanned Aircraft – Springfield News Sun
Photo: Bill Lackey

frank beafore executive director of selecttech geospatial
Frank Beafore executive director of SelectTech GeoSpatial
SPRINGFIELD — An industry report this week predicted that unmanned aircraft systems will create more than 2,700 new Ohio jobs by 2025, but for one Springfield company, unmanned aircraft already make up 20 percent of the bottom line.
“I had intended to get into it. I didn’t intend to get into it so soon,” said Frank Beafore, executive……

“Don’t use the word drone. Ever,” Beafore said. “A drone is a dumb aircraft towed behind another aircraft for target practice.”

SelectTech GeoSpatial

Full Story:Local Company Leading Work on Unmanned Aircraft – Springfield News Sun

Dave’s Comments:
The above quotation is important. The “D” word is being used as a pejorative to attack our hobby and those that fly multi-rotors and experiment with FPV and other types of advancements in our hobby. It’s our job as experienced participants to use the correct language in order to disarm those that would try to redefine the model aircraft pastime as a bunch of peeping toms, spys or other nefarious operators. Many of the program advancements in military and defense vehicles are directly attributable to fellow RC’rs participation. Advancements from out own hobby is what makes these devices and the saving of American lives possible. I would suggest when you hear the “D” word, be quick to point out your model is not an object of target practice, nor is it an autonomous robot. Our models are remotely piloted by a human being.

Wiki Target Drone


Not Surprising – The sUAS NPRM Release Date has been Pushed Back Again

According to the May update on DOT’s Rulemaking Webpage the projected publication date for the small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) has been pushed back to October 2012. Sources close to the project speculate that we may not see the somewhat contentious proposed rule until after the 2012 Presidential campaign. My money is on the later…

See more at AMA Government Relations Blog.


3D Printed Aircraft Takes Flight

Springfield Ohio’s SelectTech in September of 2011 reports sucessful test flight of the worlds first privately funded 3D printed aircraft. Designed by Frank Beafore and Beth Galang, flown by Jade Lowrey at Springfields Beckley Municipal Airport. Aircraft is powered and guided by electronics from Radical RC. Powered by Himax brushless motor, Castle Creations ESC, and Kypom Lipo battery. The aircraft was manufactured on a Dimension 22 1200 ES Printer which works by fusing together strands of ABS plastic. The printer can make parts up to about 10″ long. The aircraft is an assembly of many sections. The wing panels are made with ribs, skin with a light cross hatch structure under the skin (a Radical RC suggestion) to allow the skin to be made thin and light weight. In each rib with each panel are premade holes to accept the carbon rod spars. Total printing time was about 5 days.

Worlds First Privately Funded 3D Printed Aircraft
Worlds First Privately Funded 3D Printed Aircraft

Generally the 3D printing process is used to make prototype parts to verify designs before making a hard tooling investment. However, SelectTech demonstrates that projects with complex mechanical requirements can be manufactured and put directly into service very quickly.

A story was published in the Dayton Daily News Business section on Nov. 13, 2011.