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Almost lost my Drone

Given the inherent lack of precision of the barometer altimeter, there really is no way to discern EXACT altitude much closer than 50', correct?
See post #23
For this incident it looks like the barometric sensor was giving a pretty good indication of the drone's height relative to the launch point.
 
If you want to maximize your flight distance (not talking about flight range away from you), DJI recommends flying around 11 mph.

Do you have a reference for that DJI recommendation?

I'm remembering that someone here posted a quantitative evaluation of the best speed for maximum distance covered sometime in the past year. But I'm remembering that the optimum speed was somewhat higher.

Does anyone recall that post? I didn't bookmark it and I'm not finding it with a search.
 
Do you have a reference for that DJI recommendation?

I'm remembering that someone here posted a quantitative evaluation of the best speed for maximum distance covered sometime in the past year. But I'm remembering that the optimum speed was somewhat higher.

Does anyone recall that post? I didn't bookmark it and I'm not finding it with a search.
Look in the Specs section of the manual. The footnote shows the speed for maximum battery life, I imagine that is the speed you are wanting.
 
If you want to maximize your flight distance (not talking about flight range away from you), DJI recommends flying around 11 mph.
DJI gives 17 kph (10.6 mph) as the speed that will achieve maximum flight time (not distance).
Max distance would be achieved at around full speed in Normal Mode which is what the OP used.
 
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Loads of sensible technical observations on this rather daft experiment and the old adage-always try to fly into the wind in the outward journey so you’ll likely get wind-assist on the way back should you run into ranges problems. Hey ho you got your kit back so that’s a win.
 
What's so magical about the 400 number when it comes to AGL? If the FAA changes the limit to 500 tomorrow and everyone starts flying higher, will we all of a sudden start having a bunch of "close calls" with aircraft? Same thing with flying beyond VLOS or "way beyond" VLOS as you put it, why is that inherently so dangerous; when the FAA allows it eventually will the skies become "dangerous."
My understanding is that the 400ft AGL ceiling establishes a "separation" layer/zone between 'our' airspace and the 'normal' floor of "manned aircraft airspace".
UK rules differ somewhat from American rules in that our 400ft to the ground is to the closest ground, that ground need not be directly beneath the drone. The same rule might also apply in Europe.

With regards to VLOS the danger lies in the fact that you can not judge accurately where the drone is NOR what is close to it. You can only 'say' that the drone is somewhere in 'that' direction and that is limited to flights where there is no significant motion across your line of sight.
I suppose you could use the map to give you a direction but I wouldn't want to rely on your/my translation of the indicated direction.

The camera's view is all but useless for assessing what is in the air near the drone, its field of view is too limited and even with objects/bird moving straight towards, or away from, the camera, they are visible on the screen for so short a time that sight of them is momentary and, when caught by surprise, I doubt many people could react quickly enough to take avoiding action.

Try an experiment, set a reasonably high RTH height, say 200 to 300ft, fly the drone out to distance, go reasonably low and stop looking at the drone. Trigger an RTH and after it has had time to climb to RTH height +20 or 30 seconds or so try to find the drone.
Do not look at the screen or map, can you find the drone? I am deaf so I have NO direction sense of hearing to aid me but in circumstances where I have lost sight of the drone and RTH'ed it is quite often within 100m or so of the home point before I can spot it.
 
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My understanding is that the 400ft AGL ceiling establishes a "separation" layer/zone between 'our' airspace and the 'normal' floor of "manned aircraft airspace".
UK rules differ somewhat from American rules in that our 400ft to the ground is to the closest ground, that ground need not be directly beneath the drone. The same rule might also apply in Europe.

With regards to VLOS the danger lies in the fact that you can not judge accurately where the drone is NOR what is close to it. You can only 'say' that the drone is somewhere in 'that' direction and that is limited to flights where there is no significant motion across your line of sight.
I suppose you could use the map to give you a direction but I wouldn't want to rely on your/my translation of the indicated direction.

The camera's view is all but useless for assessing what is in the air near the drone, its field of view is too limited and even with objects/bird moving straight towards, or away from, the camera, they are visible on the screen for so short a time that sight of them is momentary and, when caught by surprise, I doubt many people could react quickly enough to take avoiding action.

Try an experiment, set a reasonably high RTH height, say 200 to 300ft, fly the drone out to distance, go reasonably low and stop looking at the drone. Trigger an RTH and after it has had time to climb to RTH height +20 or 30 seconds or so try to find the drone.
Do not look at the screen or map, can you find the drone? I am deaf so I have NO direction sense of hearing to aid me but in circumstances where I have lost sight of the drone and RTH'ed it is quite often within 100m or so of the home point before I can spot it.
I am aware of all that and in fact, it makes sense to me. I'm just trying to understand how 410 feet is dangerous today and at the end of today when the government changes the drone rules to 500 feet, how then is 410 feet not so dangerous? I just think dangerous should based on the factors mentioned above rather than an absolute number. If the poster were to describe a dangerous situation at 240 feet then so be it but I didn't want anything about a certain number (400) to be automatically described a dangerous unless of course there's a good reason for it.

Just so you know, I've experienced all which you have described and it's basically cross your fingers and pray so yeah, I try to avoid it. Some will call that "dangerous" but I'd like to base that on the risk which involves a lot of other factors rather than just the absolute altitude. I honestly believe the 400 feet rule is going to be raised one day and it should be raised for uncontrolled airspace. I recently went to "Mexico" and there were places were 600, 700, even 1000 feet were much safer than 250 feet is around here where I live in the suburban area of the States. ;)

Same is going to be said for VLOS. Unsafe. Until RID is turned on and the FAA says ok...now it's safe? Like anything else, I think it will be quickly discovered that no one really plans to fly their drone at 1000 feet (that just doesn't make any sense) and no one plans to fly 3, 4, 5 miles away....unless of course, they already do it today while it's against the rules.

Overall, I know safety is #1 on everyone's list and it should be the most important but sometimes I think it holds back the industry from doing great things because of the zero tolerance with risk. If the same were applied to commercial airlines, that industry would go nowhere fast (which is where we are today with drones). Sorry for the rant.
 
I honestly believe the 400 feet rule is going to be raised one day a
I honestly think things will go the other way, at least for hobby pilots.
I can easily imagine governments compelling drone manufacturers to introduce unbreakable ceiling and range limits, especially if people keep posting you-tubes etc. of flights to AGL's of x,000ft and distances well beyond the average persons' vision range.
Such a clamp down would probably be very easy for a government to implement. Just look what happened in India with sub 250g drones, relative to the take off point a hard ceiling of 50ft, or something like that. I don't know if that still applies.

With regards to an AGL of 400ft being safe and an AGL of 410 ft being unsafe, you are probably correct and realistically I, personally, have, in that respect, no such concerns about this particular flight...... but there has to be a threshold height at some point so why not set it to give a reasonable separation layer.
I know safety is #1 on everyone's list
Unfortunately I have to disagree with that, I would suggest that there are some you tubers etc. who value clicks much more than they do the safety of uninvolved people and sadly some of those people seem to put themselves forward as done gurus.
Then you get some people who simply don't/didn't know better, it is these people I think we can help.
Then of course there are those people who simply don't give a toss etc. and spit their dummy tits out when told something they don't like.
 
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Probably not the one about his distance. He’s certainly not the Lone Ranger in that regard and won’t be the last. We can chide people for these kinds of indiscretions,
but it’s not going to keep it from happening.
But if the community remains silent on BVLOS, then we are indirectly condoning it. By speaking up the OP might learn the responsible behaviour, or not.
 
But if the community remains silent on BVLOS, then we are indirectly condoning it. By speaking up the OP might learn the responsible behaviour, or not.
I agree with need to speak up from time to time and I certainly agree the OP may need to learn responsible behavior and I'd rather it come from the community rather than the government. But I can no way agree with remaining silent = condoning or "sending a message of approval." C'mon we are better than that. If true, do you know how much time I would need to spend on speaking up across all the activities I participate in? There's not that kind of time....besides, it would be mostly ineffective; you'd be wasting your time. I don't 100% agree with BVLOS but I'm ok to addressing it from time to time like when done in my presence or other similar circumstances. Especially when I believe (I said this in a previous post), I think BVLOS will come to an end one day and I'm not a hypocrite (since I've done it once before, in "Mexico.") ;)
 
What's so magical about the 400 number when it comes to AGL?
You've gotta draw the line somewhere, right?

But arguing over 30 feet of elevation distance seems a bit pedantic to me. IMHO it doesn't significantly change the risk enough to get fired up about. Especially when the tools available to the drone operator to maintain altitude have a margin of error.

I'd like to think that a drone operator wouldn't be charged merely for exceeding the 400' AGL limit by 30 feet unless he was doing something else that was stupid.
 
You've gotta draw the line somewhere, right?
I believe you gotta draw the line somewhere when it comes to determining what is the maximum allowable height we are prepared to allow drones to fly. But you *dont* have to arbitrarily draw the line somewhere to call it dangerous. You call it dangerous when there are facts or circumstances that create a real hazard.
 
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@EssenYVR ,in respect of the OPs original post ,the 400 ft rule compliance ,really pales into insignificance,compared to the whole flight in general
the two things that contributed most to the eventual outcome ,were distance from home point and flying out with a tail wind ,which just about covers your (doing something else that was stupid) comment in your post above
it may have come into play ,if the flight had resulted in injury ,or damage to a third party ,but luckily this did not happen
 
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I believe you gotta draw the line somewhere when it comes to determining what is the maximum allowable height we are prepared to allow drones to fly. But you *dont* have to arbitrarily draw the line somewhere to call it dangerous. You call it dangerous when there are facts or circumstances that create a real hazard.
That logic would lead us to object to other supposedly arbitrary numerical limits.
  • Highway and road speed limits
  • Creel and bag limits for fishing and hunting
  • Minimum ages for buying alcohol, voting, driving motor vehicles, and collecting Social Security benefits
  • Maximum load ratings for bridges
Simple criteria are necessary for regulating behavior in a large civilized society. The facts and circumstances of each instance can't be evaluated individually.
 
That logic would lead us to object to other supposedly arbitrary numerical limits.
  • Highway and road speed limits
  • Creel and bag limits for fishing and hunting
  • Minimum ages for buying alcohol, voting, driving motor vehicles, and collecting Social Security benefits
  • Maximum load ratings for bridges
Simple criteria are necessary for regulating behavior in a large civilized society. The facts and circumstances of each instance can't be evaluated individually.
Those aren't arbitrary. Only the uninformed public thinks those numbers are arbitrary. For example, there are extensive studies done to determine highway and road speed limits.

Anyway, like I said it's ok for some instance to arrive at an arbitrary limits. You need a limit and if there is no scientific way to arrive at one, maybe you pick one. It's just foolish to couple that with bogus justification like anything about 400 feet and it's dangerous to manned aircraft. Why? Because if you change it to 500 feet arbitrarily, then you look silly. Just come out and say it; it's no more dangerous to fly at 400 feet than 500 feet but we want to arbitrarily set the limit to 400 feet. Fine.

That would be like saying we set the minimum drinking age to 25 then trying to convince the public that at age 24 and lower if you are allowed to drink alcohol, the unemployment rate will rise or the number of car accidents will increase and more people will die. That's ridiculous.

Everything doesn't need proof in order to be regulated. I'm not saying you need to proof to set a 400 feet AGL. All I am saying is you need proof to claim 401 AGL is dangerous. Flying over 400 feet AGL with a drone is not "dangerous." Fine if you want to believe it, I do not. Is it legal? No it isn't. And I get why they chose it. But it ain't dangerous until you prove it.
 
Everything doesn't need proof in order to be regulated. I'm not saying you need to proof to set a 400 feet AGL. All I am saying is you need proof to claim 401 AGL is dangerous. Flying over 400 feet AGL with a drone is not "dangerous." Fine if you want to believe it, I do not. Is it legal? No it isn't. And I get why they chose it. But it ain't dangerous until you prove it.

As far as I an see you're the only one saying that there's been any claim that 401' AGL is more dangerous than 400' AGL, but you seem convinced that others believe it.

You say that there were "extensive studies done to determine highway and road speed limits." So, do we understand that you consider 71 mph on interstate highways to be dangerous while 70 mph is not?
 
It was pointed out that wind aloft is often (normally) quite higher than at ground. One of the things I often do after launching if I am going up higher than one or two hundred feet (we have many mountains I fly my drone up along and can get to 3000feet while remaining under 400AGL) is to fly away from my launch and note the speed (at full tilt) and then turn around and fly toward home and note the speed. If it is dramatically different I am on notice the wind speed can be an issue. Given the options, I also try to fly INTO the wind so my return is nearly guaranteed safe. two days ago it was -10F and the wind was blowing 20mph with gusts to 30 so you can bet I flew into the wind even though I was well under 400feet the entire time.
 

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