British engineers have designed, manufactured and flight tested an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) prototype airframe fabricated entirely out of ABS plastic, using Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM) technology.
The airframe comprises of just nine parts, all of which are built using the FDM process: Two wings, two elevons, two spars, two wing end fences and a central spine.
None of these components require support material during the print process. The aircraft was designed to split into two halves about the central spine. This configuration allowed a larger wingspan to be built within the FDM machines build envelope, and made transportation easier. The singlewing UAV has a 1.5 Meter wingspan an weighs in at 2 kilograms.