Falcon Ornithopter


The several ornithopters (aircraft with flapping wings) I have come across online made several compromises on complexity and realism in exchange for ease-of-assembly or efficiency. But, birds still remain among most energy efficient fliers on earth.

This project is my attempt to create the most biologically accurate ornithopter possible, for the technical challenge, possible advancements in aircraft efficiency, and fun!


My plan involves 4 iterations, with this winter’s project being the first one.

Iteration Number

  1. Ornithopter flight, membrane-based wings, folding of wings, steering with elevator and rudder on tail
  2. Airfoiled wings, bird foot landing gear
  3. Flight optimizations, sensors for automated flight
  4. Efficiency comparison with conventional aircraft, aesthetics

I will use the tools I already own, like my Ender 3 3D printer.

For anyone interested in a detailed design log, check here!


What materials will you need for your project? Where will you get them? How much does it cost? Please include all materials, including components you already own. Make sure to factor in shipping costs and sales tax.

2200 mAh 3S LiPo BatteryAmazon$34.99
2200 KV BLDC MotorAmazon$16.99
930 KV BLDC MotorAmazon$16.99
Ripstop Nylon Fabric 60”x36”Amazon$8.75
40A 5V ESC with BECAmazon$12.88
10CH Transmitter and ReceiverAmazon$52.98
16 Gauge 25’ Galvanized Steel WireAmazon$5.97
LiPo Battery ChargerAmazon$11.99
LiPo Battery Capacity CheckerAmazon$9.99
5mm Carbon Fiber RodsAmazon$29.96
3mm Carbon Fiber RodsAmazon$7.98
9g Micro Metal Gear ServoAmazon$14.98