Znak Politechniki Warszawskiej

A drone-focused student research group takes off at WUT

The team of the WUThrust research group consists of 20 people.

Business - Innovations – Technology

“Drones are an ever growing market with innovative technologies pushed to market every year and then used for both military and civilian purposes,” says Kamil Niedźwiedź, the leader of WUThrust, a research group recently launched at the Warsaw University of Technology Faculty of Electrical Engineering.

The idea to establish WUThrust emerged as its current members were building a drone team within ADeK, an electronic engineering research group. In June 2017, just a few months after they had started, they won the fourth place in Droniada, a drone competition. The contestants had to present a concept of a search and rescue response using beacons, drones and data analytics.

“ADeK specializes in electric mobility and we wanted to grow our operations around another industry so we all decided that the best we could do was to set up an new group,” explains Kamil. “We thought that would help us gain valuable experience both in building our own brand and in project management.”

Hungry for challenges

A recent newcomer as WUThrust is, the group has still set very ambitious goals. “In 2018, we are planning to design and execute a platform equipped with anti-collision systems, image detection systems and autonomous flight systems,” says Kamil. “Ultimately, we intend to take part in the UAV test-bed where we will showcase the product of our work.”

The research group was initiated by 10 students of the Warsaw University of Technology. Now, the team has swollen to 20 people. Members include UAVO VLOS drone operators with skills certified by a state qualification (which means that they can pilot UAVs and have the relevant theoretical background). WUThrust members come largely from two WUT faculties: the Faculty of Electric Engineering and the Faculty of Power and Aeronautical Engineering.

Must-haves

What knowledge do you need to deal with in drones? “Getting started, you should learn about the Aviation Law in the first place as it imposes certain restrictions on air space users in Poland,” says Kamil. “As for the technical side, some background in Electronic Engineering, ICT and Geoinformatics will be enough to get you going. Only as you dig further into detail and have plans to design and execute a flying platform that must satisfy certain conditions, you will face issues of Mechanics of Materials, Aerodynamics, Robotics or development of proper aerial vehicle control and communication systems.

The opportunity for students to learn from each other is a strong advantage of working in the research group.

Agnieszka Kapela
Promotion and Information Office