Martin Aircraft Company Six Degrees of Freedom Test Programme

Martin Aircraft Company Six Degrees of Freedom Test Programme

Development in the aviation industry can be a high risk and costly excursion, particularly if prototypes are damaged in the process. Martin Aircraft Company engaged Holmes Solutions to design a system that would protect their new aircraft in the event of any incidents that would cause the aircraft to drop while they put the flight control system through its paces. The clever system prevented any damage to the prototype that could have caused significant delays and costs to the test programme. The system also provided them with great data, as well as a few sighs of relief knowing their aircraft was in safe hands.

Martin Aircraft Company Six Degrees of Freedom Test Programme

Creating a whole new field of aircraft is a risky business, and no part is riskier than when you get to flight tests. Protecting the public, the pilot and your precious prototype is of the utmost importance. We were honoured that Martin Aircraft Company chose us as their development partner when they decided to explore the limits of their flight control system.

Martin Aircraft Company needed to test the reliability of the flight control system to show its effectiveness, and seek improvements in its operation. This was a crucial stage in development, where the company would see the success of their ground-breaking technology. Should any damage occur, prototypes would be out of commission, delaying development and adding extensive cost.

We have been collaborating with Martin Aircraft Company for some time on component test efforts, however this project was certainly the most ambitious yet. Their needs were simple: 1. Allow the aircraft to fly freely in a restricted sphere; 2. Catch the aircraft if the flight control system had an error. While the needs were straight forward, the design required some serious thought. Thankfully we have a history of overcoming challenging and unique problems, so we knew we’d find the solution.

Safety is very important in all Martin Aircraft Company activities, and the development of the 6-DOF fall arrest system was no exception. The outcome was a system that was safe for operators and prevented any damage to the aircraft, all the while providing the freedom to thoroughly test the machine.

Our clever system allowed the aircraft to be tested to its limits. This provided the Martin Aircraft team with invaluable data, peace of mind, and the occasional sigh of relief with the knowledge their prototype would be in one piece at the end of the tests.

The test programme was deemed a great success. Completed on time with no damaged prototypes, avoiding any major delays or costs, Martin Aircraft Company now have the utmost confidence in their system. They’re now working on manned flights and our system will be ready and waiting to allow them to safely explore the limits of their system once more.


For more information about Martin Aircraft test programme see their Martin Jet Pack News or alternatively visit their website  For information on how Holmes Solutions can aid your test programme, please contact us on +64 3 363 2180 or email  

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