Multirotor Drone Noise at Static Thrust


C. E. Tinney and Sirohi, J., “Multirotor Drone Noise at Static Thrust,” AIAA Journal, vol. 56, no. 7, pp. 2816-2826, 2018.


A first principles understanding of the sound field produced by multirotor drones in hover is presented. Propeller diameters ranging from 8 to 12 in. are examined and with configurations comprising an isolated rotor, quadcopter, and hexacopter configuration. The drone pitch, defined as the ratio of drone diameter to rotor diameter, is the same for all multirotor configurations and is valued at 2.25. A six-degree-of-freedom load cell is used to assess the aerodynamic performance of each configuration, whereas an azimuthal array of 1∕2 in. microphones, placed between two and three hub-center diameters from the drone center, is used to assess the acoustic near field. The analysis is performed using standard statistical metrics such as sound pressure level and overall sound pressure level and is presented to demonstrate the relationship between the number of rotors, the drone rotor size, and its aerodynamic performance (thrust) relative to the near-field acoustics.