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Everything posted by Av8Chuck

  1. That’s pretty much it, if you ask they’re going to say no unless you do it professionally and pay.
  2. Av8Chuck


    What kind of drone?
  3. If it’s designated as a National Park, you can NOT fly there. Here’s an article that will thoroughly confuse you. https://www.nps.gov/articles/unmanned-aircraft-in-the-national-parks.htm So your confusion is well justified and I’m not doing anything to help, but I’m not the cause of the concussion. So here’s a few things to thing about. How important is getting aerial footage of the Sedona area? There’s an airport where you can charter a plane or helicopter and get footage legally. If that’s cost prohibitive then use common sense as a guide. Some argue that you can overfly the park as long as you don’t TAKEOFF or LAND within the park boundary. Good luck knowing what those boundaries are. So IF your going to fly make sure your nowhere near people or animals. Fly above 50’ and below 100’ and keep a lookout for low flying sight seeing aircraft. Chances are that if you can’t see anyone, at that altitude they won’t see or hear you. Don’t fly very long at any one location. Some Rangers have technology that can alert them that a drone is in the area but probably can’t tell the exact location. There’s a saying here, “manage by forgiveness.” It means that if you ask an official if you can fly and they tell you no, and they will, and then you get caught flying, your in trouble. If you don’t ask and get cought, only speak Italian and maybe they’ll just tell you not to do it again. Keep in in mind that if you are caught they can confiscate your drone. I’ve always wondered what they do with them? Anyway it’s not as confusing as it’s being made out to be, legally you can’t fly.
  4. That’s why I brought this up. Maximum all up weight for sUAV in the US is under 55 pounds so it can’t be used here commercially without a waiver. Not the end of the world but that could seriously effect sales.
  5. Welcome. Can you share a link to your YouTube Channel?
  6. Can you share pictures and specs? One thing to keep in mind, in the U.S. the all up weight limit is under 55 pounds. If your helicopter can fly for 6 hours without a payload, chances are the fuel is more than 55 pounds.
  7. Welcome. The first question I might ask myself would be is it a good idea starting any business in California? As a CA business owner I’d advise against it. Do you have a part 107? It’s illigal to fly over people and beyond line of site BVLOS. Although not impossible, this fact relagates drone delivery to remote places. Generally although remote areas might actually need or want aerial delivery the limitation on flight time and not being able to fly BVLOS. Aside from the regulatory restrictions and technical limitations the logistics for such an endeavor are so huge I don’t see how anyone could accomplish this and be profitable. When you consider Amazon, UPS or FedEx, they are already successful delivery companies who plan to use UAVs to extend an already profitable logistics chain. Even they have only been able to demonstrate this on a very limited scale in remote places. Also, more fundamentally do customers actually want their food or products delivered by a UAS? I know people will initially say yes, but once the novelty where’s off, what iproblem is this actually solving? Obviously, I have no idea who you are, what experience or technology you have or how much your willing to spend etc., so there’s no way for me to advise you. It’s an interesting topic but my opinion is that the discussions about such an idea have to become a bit more realistic. UAV delivery is probably at least a decade away before the technology and regulations make it possible.
  8. Although we’re not finished, this article closes the loop on what we started more than a year ago. This was written by someone in NAVSEA and is kind of an interesting take on our research. To: Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer From: Mark B. Thompson; T2/IP Coordinator; NSWC PHD – Office of Technology Re: Research on Digital Twins for Modernized In-Service Engineering, and Naval Maintenance Throughout history, the races that the world forever remembers are not necessarily those of a person or vehicle’s speed around a course, but rather those of an entity’s dominance of ingenuity. Think of the Arms Race prior to the outbreak of the First World War, or the Space Race launched under President Kennedy. What the victors of these events have in common is their swift and successful capitalization of emerging technologies on a maximum scale. They who can recognize, harness, and implement the value of such technologies for their cause will accelerate their progress, and ultimately be the victor. One cog in the technological wheel of today’s race is the application of unmanned aerial systems (UASs), and the utilization of their collected data for military uses. The division of the Naval Surface Warfare Center located at Port Hueneme, CA (NSWC PHD) has taken great stridesin the recognition, and effective capitalization, of UAS applications through their efforts with Aerial Alchemy,under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA), signed in June of 2018. Aerial Alchemy is a UAS and data collection service company local to the Command, and familiarized with the needs of the Navy through participation in multiple Advanced Naval Technology Exercise (ANTX) iterations. Their attention to detail in the back-end quality and security of the collected data especially caught the Navy’s attention. NSWC PHD and Aerial Alchemy are now refining their methods of UASdata collection through relevant and increased testing to align with the Command’s Strategic Objective of accelerating deployment of new capabilities to the fleet. In the terminology of the agreement itself, the purpose of the prescribed research is to “investigate the feasibility of utilizing unmanned aerial systems in the realm of naval and shipboard repair, maintenance and special use situations to ensure the readiness of naval and combat systems” (NCRADA-NSWC PHD-18-0004). As a naval facility dedicated to in-service engineering, NSWC PHD seeks effective and efficient methods to reduce maintenance costs and improve maintenance methods. Aerial Alchemy proposed they could producedigital twins of U.S. Navy vessels and assets, using combined aerial and ground (onboard) photogrammetry with LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging), in such exceptional detail that a 3-D model could be used to view an individual flake of rust. And through repeated ventures aboard the Naval Facilities Engineering Command’s (NAVFAC’s) research and testing vessel the M/V Independence, they have done just that. This form of digital engineering lends itself to Navy preventative maintenance needs by allowing engineers and maintenance personnel to compare scans of a ship and observe corrosion degradation to key combat (or other) systems in unprecedented clarity. Research under the CRADA has insofar shown the notable potential for reduced maintenance costs by producing a resultant data set that can be shared and viewed by multiple experts and inspectors remotely. These experts can potentially call for repairs on a particular system before it degrades to the point of failure without ever having stepped foot on that respective vessel. The procedure also reduces human error and negligence issues that can arise from the repetition and fatigue associated with many manual inspection routines. The accuracy and reliability of any identified and reportedquandary onboard can also be substantiated when accompanied by evidence from the 3-D model. This would stand to reduce miscommunications, and therefore long-term logistical costs for the Navy. Since the summer of 2018, research has largely moved past proving that a UAS survey can be successful, and shifted towards filling other holes in the Navy value chain. The innumerableprofessional applications of such time-based, geotagged,metadata-dense models are only beginning to materialize. Another use for data compiled in the form of a digital twin is in the realm of digital engineering, separate from corrosion monitoring. While blueprints perhaps show what a vessel should be, a scan of the ship its true status, and is thus a more actionable representation of the ship. Prior to entering into the CRADA, the NSWC PHD Office of Research and Technology Application (ORTA) Manager,Mr. Alan Jaeger, personally observed the conduct and results of Aerial Alchemy’s scans of power substationsacross California. It was observed that their team’s process succeeded in beginning to modernize the engineering methods of public utility infrastructure, and it was recognized that the U.S. Navy stands to benefit from a comparable modernization. Digital Engineering was announced as an official Department of Defense (DoD) initiative in June of 2018, the same month this CRADA took effect. The DoD’s subsidiary Office for Research and Engineering recognizes the need to “stay ahead of demands” to “address long-standing challenges associated with complexity, uncertainty, and rapid change in deploying and using U.S. defense systems.” This ongoing work between NSWC PHD and Aerial Alchemy additionally serves to fulfil all five points of the DoD’s Digital Engineering Strategy, most notably, to “formalize the development, integration, and use of models to inform enterprise and program decision making” (Digital Engineering Strategy, 2018). Perhaps the big race of our day is, in fact, the contest of gaining a mastery of the utilization of unmanned systems and their invaluable data. The advantage this gives NSWC PHD, the U.S. Navy, and Department of Defense as a whole has yet to be seen in its entirety, yet the research demonstrated under the CRADA betweenAerial Alchemy and the laboratory of Port Hueneme Division continues to offer a leg-up to the United States by manifesting the beginnings of an effective long-term maintenance system. The unparalleled accuracy of corrosion tracking and digital twin engineering capabilitiesgenerated during this research stand to reducemaintenance costs and be among the most innovative new capabilities to the fleet. In conclusion, consider this quote from the Office of the Undersecretary of Defenseand its relevance to this undertaking: “By providing a more agile and responsive development environment, digital engineering supports engineering excellence and provides a foundation to fight and win the wars of the future.” References: Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Engineering. “Digital Engineering Goals and Focus Areas.” Digital Engineering Strategy, June 2018, https://www.acq.osd.mil/se/initiatives/init_de.html. “Services.” Aerial Alchemy, https://aerialalchemy.com/services/. United States, Naval Surface Warfare Center, Port Hueneme, Navy Cooperative Research and Development Agreement. NCRADA-NSWC PHD-18-0004, 2018
  9. Sure as long as you don’t turn it into the DoD. What you say about connectors is mostly true, however, is that a problem? We’ve engineered out most of the Chinese and hobby grade components but we have not gone to the canon style plugs the military uses. Too expensive and too heavy, but the plugs we are using seem more than adequate. I say that squeamishly... You bring up another great point about standardization. Every drone manufactured in the US is different, however I’d also point out that so is every Chinese drone. Because of DJI’s market share they are the de facto standard in the consumer market but even there you can’t use a P3 battery in a P4 - very few of their accessories are interchangeable between product lines and that’s within the same company. Standardization is the key to scaling this industry just try to raise money to manufacture hardware in the US!
  10. It seems that UAV Coach continually gives away free passes to most of the commercial UAV type trade shows to people who make a compelling argument on why they deserve to win them. Yet I hardly ever see any followup describing the show, attendance, buzz, etc.. I have seen hardly any feedback from the recent Interdrone or DJI's Airworks and what I have seen make it appear that attendance was pretty sparse and there wasn't much buzz about anything new or innovative. Trade shows can be a great place to see if the hype developers are putting out at trade shows matches user experiences throughout the year. Anyone attend any of these show and are you willing to share your experiences with those of us who couldn't attend?
  11. One other aspect you should consider is availability. I’m assuming you’ve already considered the DJI product line. The only two I think might meet your requirements are the M200 and M600. Your requirements could easily be met with a more powerful quad or small Y6 (hex). But DJI doesn’t offer anything like that. The M200 may not be powerful enough and the M600 is overkill for a 3 pound payload. So it comes down to your threshold for pain dealing with anything that isn’t DJI, UAVs based on Ardupilot/PX4 for example. There are plenty of options available the challenge is that there mostly all “one-offs” This can work depending on your experience. There really aren’t many “off the shelf” alternatives to DJI. I believe https://freeflysystems.com/ is coming out with a quad. Although there focus is on aerial photography they are growing in the industrial inspection market. You might want to consider partnering or contracting with a company that can provide you with a purpose built solution for your application.
  12. Welcome. We all agree UAVs will be here for some time to come. If your mostly interested in commercial (making money) aspect then there a lot of great people on this forum willing to share their experience with you. Most have come to the realization that if you want to make money in the air with a UAV, then you’d better be able to make money on the ground first. If you want to do aerial photography then you should already be making money in photography. The UAV jus enables you to get the camera in the air. Good luck with your venture.
  13. Took a cruise to Alaska. Not a lot of aerial, but lots of planes and ships...
  14. Hi Henry, welcome. thats a great idea, unfortunately it’s difficult to discuss LiDAR as a hobby. Not to say that it can’t be done but it’s expensive. The range of LiDAR that is most often used for engineering is about $100K. There are relatively less expensive models that would enable you to see through the vegetation and are much less acurate but they’re still around $50K. That doesn’t include the UAV. We took a look at some less expensive Flash LiDARs a while back, interesting but nowhere near enough resolution for our application. You might want to research those a bit. As you might imagine any UAV that can lift 15 pounds safely is going to be relatively expensive, $25K and up. I’m guessing that this is not music to your ears. There have been a couple of documentaries about archeologists using LiDAR that are discovering things that have gone unnoticed. Maybe the value of the documentary and the artifacts they found offset the cost enough to make it worth doing. Real Raiders of the Lost Arc kind of stuff..
  15. There are plenty of applications where a 12MP camera is more than adequate, it all depends on how the commercial application is defined. If we confine the discussion to what the Skydio2 is actually capable rather than “Enterprise this and Industrial that” then a better comparison can be made with the MavicPro. If someone is actually using a MavicPro for any kind of Enterprise or industrial inspections then they can add their experiences. I think people might be surprised how little that gets discussed. Im curious how you’d use the tracking technology for producing a property video. Can you create a path for it to follow, give it a POI to focus on and it will nevigate any obstacles in the same way it does following a person? I’m guessing that the algorithm needs the the POI to be moving. Also, I think the point that @Dave Pitman made about the TOS is interesting and will probably impede any potential partnerships with other vendors. If it works and didn’t have licensing issues, I think the adoption of third party tech on a DJI alternative could happen very quickly.
  16. That’s a great artical and it’s certianly nice to see real competition for DJI. They are certianly taking tracking to a whole other level in the consumer market and there would certianly be opprotunity for this type of technology in professional applications, however, it’s a small drone with only a 12MP camera, hardly something a professional would use for engineering, cinematography or broadcasting. That’s not to say that people aren’t trying to use MavicPro’s for these applications. But if the attention is focused on what the Skydio2 does really well as compared to a MavicPro and not on professional hypeware then it will likely win significant market share.
  17. It bans all Chinese manufactured UAVs from even being used on any federally funded project or department funded by the government. When the Army ban first appeared in 2015; DJI reacted the same way stating they weren’t a DoD contractor. They pretty much said it’s not their problem. That was the wrong answer and the reason they find themselves in the middle of this problem four years later. It turns out the US Army Corps of Engineers manages two thirds of the civil infrastructure projects in the US which represents something like $400B anually. The problem, as it has been pointed out, is that what’s the alternative for all of the federal organizations who already own DJI drones? The easiest way to solve the problem is to change the ban to accommodate the fixes DJI claims they’ve made to their firmware. That didn’t happen. In fact Congress is now making the ban a law and the DoD is encouraging Silicon Valley to create a fund to provide capital for US manufacturers. So, your right, this is not an outright ban on purchasing DJI drones but it will severely inhibit commercial UAV operators who use DJI products from getting access to work and being profitable.
  18. Get an I2. DJI no longer supports the I1.
  19. Av8Chuck


    Hi @Mikey and welcome to the forum. Why an Inspire 1? Do you already own one? You can get used I2’s almost as cheaply and you’d have a drone that DJI is still supporting. You might be surprised how many batteries it takes to fly six hours a day. Getting enough I1 batteries could be a challenge. Just a thought.
  20. Av8Chuck

    pixhawk models

    @Spitfire76 the Cube is a good flight controller but it’s not as advertised. That “H” logo on every Cube is a Chinese manufacturer. They can claim that the Blue Cube is made in the USA but in the long run it will probably not pass muster with the DoD. Doesn’t make it a bad controller, but depending on the application, provenance might make a difference so people should be aware. Thats generally a good video that explains the differences between Cube’s but it’s a bit of revisionist history. 3DR is not out of business. Phillip Rowse was one of the developers at 3DR but like I mentioned earlier by the time the SOLO was released the Pixhawk2 was already old news. Again, doesn’t make it a bad controller, it’s just that if your going to make development decisions you should be aware that there are already controllers out there that have been using the 32-bit STM32F777 Cortex M4 core with FPU rev. 3 which is much faster with better components than the yellow Cube has been flying for some time. One of those controllers is available here: https://store.mrobotics.io/mRo-Control-Zero-F7-p/mro-ctrl-zero-f7.htm. I don’t care if people purchase this flight controller, but if we’re going to have a discussion about the best non-Chinese manufactured controllers then it should at least be a consideration. Also, although Phillip Rowse gets a lot of well deserved credit for the Cube, it was developed at 3DR, the link I provided is to mRobotics, Jordy Munoz the founder of 3DR. He’s not exactly chopped liver. Phillip has gone on to fix many of the short comings of the original SOLO controller, which is great, but there are more capable controllers available that would make a better choice for developing commercial UAVs.