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A paper titled “System Identification of a Robotic Hummingbird,” authored by David Coleman and Dr. Moble Benedict, won the best paper award in the “Advanced Vertical Flight” session at the 2016 American Helicopter Society Annual Forum. Coleman, a second-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at Texas A&M University, presented his paper amongst 11 other presenters in the session which session focused on novel revolutionary concepts to achieve vertical flight.

Coleman’s paper was recognized for being the most important technical contribution to the field. The paper focused on identifying a linearized model of the vehicle dynamics of a robotic hummingbird in hovering flight through systematic flight testing. This is the first time such a model has been created through experiments for a two-winged, hover-capable flapping wing robot. 

Coleman works under the guidance of Benedict, assistant professor in aerospace engineering and director of the Advanced Vertical Flight Laboratory at Texas A&M.