This paper is one of the first publications documenting the performance optimization of a port fuel injected, spark ignited, internal combustion engine for an unmanned aerial vehicle hybrid powertrain. An optimized hybrid powertrain enables long-duration quadcopter flight and provides vertical takeoff and landing capability for fixed-wing aircraft. This technology can improve flight times and lessen runway requirements, helping to solve two of the biggest problems faced by the booming UAV industry.
The main activities contributing to this hybrid powertrain effort are the development of a small engine test facility, design of powertrain vehicle integration hardware, and the testing and characterization of both electric motor-generators and fuel-injected two-stroke engines. This paper investigates engine testing completed to date including experimental setup, testing procedures, data post processing, and results.