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CHALLENGE: Build a flying platform and launch a plane

Attach multiple rotors to any surface to create a large flying platform. Build a release system and launch a small plane from the platform. Bonus points for cool extras like floating, cameras, heli pad, and a rubber band to assist launching the plane.


Staff member
You mean like a plane that launches a multirotor that launches a multirotor that launches a multirotor that delivers gum?

Just wondering what the fascination of using a multirotor setup for this is?

I was looking at it with the idea of dropping a quad like they did in that flight test video from the other quad but from the bottom of a plane. I even went so far as to start working on a recovery system even. Figure if the plane were put into GPS lock with a straight bearing at a slow speed with a 4 point harness descended from the bottom of the plane with a magnet you could match course and speed then let the magnet catch use a reed switch for power disconnect then reel it in and take control of the plane again. The plane would likely need to be big anyway so you could put in relays for video.
Exactly just drop a quad instead. Was also thinking a vertical launch bay could work to drop cheap gliders nose first then let gravity build speed enough to pull up into.

It just seems more efficient this way with copters taking so much power to to fly that flight times are low it just doesn't make sense to have these as your mother ship.
The heli-carrier is coming too. I'm thinking a big square, with motors at each corner, and a plane on top.
But again, why? Why a carrier that's going to fly for 10 - 20 min. Sure it's cool looking but unless you can push the efficiency to keep it in the air long enough to warrant launching, and landing on.


propulsion impromptu
can you land in mid-air? (sort of)

multi-rotor have limited flying time, though it provides somewhat static landing strip.
giant plane have more flying time but it won't be static, and there will be turbulence.
release and catch, maybe more viable but it won't be easy.

winch tractor release and catch might be easier for approach imho, similar to real mid-air refueling.
perhaps a v stab hook with magnet as bait/contact point.
I'm thinking a great mix would be a tilt rotor wing like a transversa. It could take off either hand launched or like a quad/tri. Throttle back in wing mode to extend flight time, maybe even use ridges or thermals. Smaller craft can launch from being dropped or take off from the transversa while it's hovering.