School project from the ground up


Hello everyone!

I am very excited about this school project of mine but have no experience what so ever in building drones and therefore need some help! My team is suppose to build a drone that will be launched in a rocket and “delivered” to Mars (or Nevada). This drone will be housed in a ground station with a cylindrical shape roughly 6" in diameter and 9" long. The total weight of the drone wont be over 1 kg. The main purpose of this drone is to hover and collect LIDAR information. The basic thing I need help with is choosing the motors and propellers because once I get those I can design the drone around them!

I have been reading around the forums a bunch and there is just so much information which is a blessing and a curse sometimes… What I think I understand so far is that I need about 1.5x the weight of my drone in thrust. Also larger props will help aid in stability. However I must fit inside this capsule so the props can be too large. I guess what I am thinking is what is the smallest props I can get away with (paired with what motor) to achieve the 1.5 kg of thrust?

Thanks to any help!


Hey Travis,
Could you tell me how long your Drone needs to fly :slight_smile:

Luca :slight_smile:


Hey Luca,
So the flight time is not the most important stat of the drone as the ground station will have wireless charging capabilities so it just needs to be able to LIDAR (as a verb) a certain distance and then come back!

I will start a build thread once we get started on it the project! That would be fun, thanks for the idea.


Since your Drone needs to be quite small i would take
the emax 2205 2300kv with maybe a 5 * 4.7 * 2 Prop made out of carbon.
(Maybe this Motor is a bit overpowered… Also have a look at some smaller Motors(At Example the little ones of the ZMR250 ))
There are probably much better solutions out there…
The Motors offers more than enough thrust so you Drone doesnt need fly with like 1MPH and you dont need to worry about the weight.
To be honest i dont know why i would take this type of Propeller…
Maybe there are some Pilots in this Forum that can tell a bit more about a good efficient Prop :slight_smile:

Luca :slight_smile: