Quadcopter vs Drone. A case for the Tessacopter.

This entry is part 3 of 6 in the series Quadcopter
Hey. This page is more than 6 years old! The content here is probably outdated, so bear that in mind. If this post is part of a series, there may be a more recent post that supersedes this one.

An observation (from trying to work out how to build my ‘copter’): They are referred to as Quadcopter or Quads, not drones ( I had ‘drone’ in the first couple of my posts). I feel I would get destroyed if went to some event will a load of aficionados and started talking about my racing Drone.

This website article offers a view of the differences between drones and quadcopter – the latter essentially being a subset of the former. Fair enough…

…Oh… but they miss the point! Here is my pernickety bombshell (is that an oxymoron?) that will no doubt sweep through the UAV community.

‘Helicopter’, the basis of the word Quadcopter: Its origin is not heli- then -copter. It’s helico- and -pter, from (ancient?) Greek:

Pter shows up in Pterodactyl; BTW, a word quite hard to spell (and as pterodactyls, 5 typographic consonants in a row, which is up there with the best of them). I wondered if –pter ought really to be in helicopter at all. The whole point is helicopters don’t generate their lift from ‘wings’ and the aeroplane-wing sort of way. But if you think of them as spiral wings, as it seems the Frenchman, Gustave de Ponton d’Amécourt, did when he coined the word, then it is entirely apt.

‘Spiral Wings’ got me to thinking about sycamore seeds. Found this interesting website on the physics of them.

So Quadcopter could maybe be passed off as a shortening of Quad-Helicopter: Four spiral wings. It should Definitely not Quadpter though…that’s ‘four wings’.

Problem with Quad-Helicopter (shortening to Quadcopter) is that quad is latin whereas helico- and -pter are greek. I am pretty sure the greek equivalent of quad- if tessa-, as in tesselate, tesseract and tessarines.

So we are left with Tessa-Helicopter. I’d say that rolls off the tongue better as Tessacopter as an acceptable portmanteau … in the way that ‘smoke-fog’ is shortened, for linguistic convenience, to smog.

My Point

Did not really have one. Managed to brick both my flight controller and power unit so as irritated with drones, UAVs, quadcopter, tessacopters or whatever we are calling them. Pile of useless electronic junk at the moment, from my perspective ;).



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