Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering

Undergraduate study

Test Flight

BMFA Payload Challenge

The BMFA Payload challenge is an International competition which requires students to undertake a full design and build cycle of a load-carrying RC model aircraft to compete in a series of payload challenges in the summer of 2017.

Open to 1st year Aeronautical students, the selected teams must work together to manufacture, develop, test and then compete against other teams at the BMFA Payload Challenge event. All of this has to be done within a limited budget and to strict safety guidelines.

The objective of this competition is to design and build an aircraft to carry the greatest mass in a single flight round a prescribed course. This will be assessed comparatively against the weight of the aircraft. The winner will achieve the highest ratio of payload to aircraft empty mass.

System requirements of the model aircraft allow fight to be effected either autonomously or by radio control. Where autonomous flight capability is utilised the systems used must make provision for the pilot to regain full control of the aircraft.

This competition bridges the gap between academia and industry having been designed to give students exposure to a number of disciplines that they will need in their engineering careers, whilst at the same time providing the framework for a compulsive, enjoyable and competitive experience.

The model aircraft must possess the following characteristics:

  • Must be able to carry up to 4kg of water
  • The aircraft must be a fixed wing
  • Low cost
  • Safety and airworthines

Loughborough’s BMFA teams are student led, with guidance and support from academic and student mentors. This means that the team is not only responsible for producing a brand new model aircraft every year, but also all finances, health and safety and the business side of manufacturing a RC model Aircraft.