We Talked With Adam Weld, Co-Creator Of the Hoverbot Nano, About Micro Drones
Adam Weld talks with DRIVE/AERIAL about his handiwork, and whether micro brushless drones have reached peak efficiency.
Micro brushless quadcopters use the same components found in racing drones, just miniaturized. These tiny drones stay under the 250 gram (0.55 pound) limit set by the FAA, so there is no need to register them—which has led to a surge in their popularity amongst enthusiasts. (And led us at DRIVE/AERIAL, in turn, to dedicate the month of March to them in our new series, Micro Madness.)
It used to be that all micro drones were built using brushed motors, tiny devices that contain all the necessary components for spinning the propellers and only need a power source. Since brushed motors contain all the parts in a single case, they're more complicated than brushless ones; cramming parts dedicated to turing the props and regulating power into a small area means they can't handle as much juice as brushless motors of the same size. In addition, since they contain more moving parts, they're liable to break more frequently.
Once the FAA set its limit of registration of 250 grams, however, the drone community saw an opportunity to make more efficient—and more powerful—lightweight racers using the more efficient brushless motor drivetrains found in much bigger quads, which use a separate electronic speed controller outside the motor body.
To find out more about this intriguing new community, we invited micro brushless pioneer Adam Weld —co creator of Hoverbot— to talk about the future of the micro community, and to test out the Nano, Hoverbot's micro brushless drone.
This is the first of three episodes dedicated to the Hoverbot Nano. Next, we'll go for a test flight, race around our showroom course, and in the third video, conclude our thoughts on the Hoverbot Nano.
Video shot by Erica Lourd and Andrew Siceloff, produced by Cait Knoll, edited by Andrew Siceloff and Erica Lourd.