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Smart RTH reliability?

lemieszek

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Hi all,

I do a lot of multi-battery missions (flightplan or mapping on pix4d) and work in urban environments with lots of interference, so on-board smart RTH is something I heavily rely on. I've ran a few missions where my Anafi interrupted its mission and came back on its own as planned (even with no signal), but I had 2 close calls and I'm wondering if there's something I should do or adjust to avoid these:

#1 was during a flightplan mission - it activated RTH mid mission from a distance and came back as planned, but the battery died just a couple of feet above ground (soft ground so no damage). It was a clear day with no wind so that got me a little worried.
#2 was worse, though it was during a free flight. I had 120m (400ft) for RTH height and while flying about 50m out, 30m high, it sensed low battery and initiated RTH, so it started climbing. It climbed only about 5m and started descending immediately where it was. I was able to manually pull it a little closer but couldn't "force climb" it, so I hit a fence and had to spend a couple of hours to retrieve it.

#1 bothers me a little because apparently the smart RTH feature doesn't allow for any wiggle room in terms of how much battery left it plans to have once it's landed. With a DJI Spark I used to be a little annoyed because I'd often still have 20% or more once it landed after smart RTH, making me feel it could squeeze in a little more mission before it landed. But Anafi seems to cut it too close to 0, at least from this experience? Now, #2 scares me much more, because it missed it's calculations by a long shot. It failed at estimating the amount of battery it needed to climb ~90m and move 50m to the side, then descend 120m. I'm hoping this gross error was maybe due to it being so close to me?

In any case, I rely on the drone being able to safely return to the take off point with enough battery left. I've searched on this forum but didn't find many mentions about this (possibly because most people fly with good reception and within close distances so that the behavior of landing where it is isn't much of a problem?).

In all cases I was flying with comfortable temperatures and relatively new batteries (only a few cycles in them). The Anafi itself is also brand new.

Any input is greatly appreciated. Cheers!
 
I've seen similar things, luckily in a training environment. It seems that the drone's proximity to the controller is not good for the RTH system. Fortunately for me, when in normal flight further afield, it has worked reasonably well, although from time to time I stop the RTH and manually correct. Cheers !!!
 
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Hi all,

I do a lot of multi-battery missions (flightplan or mapping on pix4d) and work in urban environments with lots of interference, so on-board smart RTH is something I heavily rely on. I've ran a few missions where my Anafi interrupted its mission and came back on its own as planned (even with no signal), but I had 2 close calls and I'm wondering if there's something I should do or adjust to avoid these:

#1 was during a flightplan mission - it activated RTH mid mission from a distance and came back as planned, but the battery died just a couple of feet above ground (soft ground so no damage). It was a clear day with no wind so that got me a little worried.
#2 was worse, though it was during a free flight. I had 120m (400ft) for RTH height and while flying about 50m out, 30m high, it sensed low battery and initiated RTH, so it started climbing. It climbed only about 5m and started descending immediately where it was. I was able to manually pull it a little closer but couldn't "force climb" it, so I hit a fence and had to spend a couple of hours to retrieve it.

#1 bothers me a little because apparently the smart RTH feature doesn't allow for any wiggle room in terms of how much battery left it plans to have once it's landed. With a DJI Spark I used to be a little annoyed because I'd often still have 20% or more once it landed after smart RTH, making me feel it could squeeze in a little more mission before it landed. But Anafi seems to cut it too close to 0, at least from this experience? Now, #2 scares me much more, because it missed it's calculations by a long shot. It failed at estimating the amount of battery it needed to climb ~90m and move 50m to the side, then descend 120m. I'm hoping this gross error was maybe due to it being so close to me?

In any case, I rely on the drone being able to safely return to the take off point with enough battery left. I've searched on this forum but didn't find many mentions about this (possibly because most people fly with good reception and within close distances so that the behavior of landing where it is isn't much of a problem?).

In all cases I was flying with comfortable temperatures and relatively new batteries (only a few cycles in them). The Anafi itself is also brand new.

Any input is greatly appreciated. Cheers!

Don’t rely on auto or low battery RTH to get home safely. Best to plan on timing of flight missions to return with at least 20% to 25% battery life remaining. Draining batteries to low voltage levels will likely damage or significantly reduce their life. If draining them low is required I would suggest you recharge to storage level as soon as possible
Best of luck
 
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I often fly until the battery is really low (Iknow, I know...), but mostly in areas with no wifi interferences, and I only had issues when the GPS on the drone was not perfectly set BEFORE takeoff. It's basic stuff, but sometimes one may forget to check that small icon, or it switches back from green to yellow or red, and it can take some time to get a precise position...
After a few scares and almost losing the drone hundreds of meters away without knowing its exact position, I check carefully now!
 
Hi all,

I do a lot of multi-battery missions (flightplan or mapping on pix4d) and work in urban environments with lots of interference, so on-board smart RTH is something I heavily rely on. I've ran a few missions where my Anafi interrupted its mission and came back on its own as planned (even with no signal), but I had 2 close calls and I'm wondering if there's something I should do or adjust to avoid these:

#1 was during a flightplan mission - it activated RTH mid mission from a distance and came back as planned, but the battery died just a couple of feet above ground (soft ground so no damage). It was a clear day with no wind so that got me a little worried.
#2 was worse, though it was during a free flight. I had 120m (400ft) for RTH height and while flying about 50m out, 30m high, it sensed low battery and initiated RTH, so it started climbing. It climbed only about 5m and started descending immediately where it was. I was able to manually pull it a little closer but couldn't "force climb" it, so I hit a fence and had to spend a couple of hours to retrieve it.

#1 bothers me a little because apparently the smart RTH feature doesn't allow for any wiggle room in terms of how much battery left it plans to have once it's landed. With a DJI Spark I used to be a little annoyed because I'd often still have 20% or more once it landed after smart RTH, making me feel it could squeeze in a little more mission before it landed. But Anafi seems to cut it too close to 0, at least from this experience? Now, #2 scares me much more, because it missed it's calculations by a long shot. It failed at estimating the amount of battery it needed to climb ~90m and move 50m to the side, then descend 120m. I'm hoping this gross error was maybe due to it being so close to me?

In any case, I rely on the drone being able to safely return to the take off point with enough battery left. I've searched on this forum but didn't find many mentions about this (possibly because most people fly with good reception and within close distances so that the behavior of landing where it is isn't much of a problem?).

In all cases I was flying with comfortable temperatures and relatively new batteries (only a few cycles in them). The Anafi itself is also brand new.

Any input is greatly appreciated. Cheers!
Hey there! I totally get where you're coming from, and those close calls can be nerve-wracking. For multi-battery missions in urban settings, especially with interference, relying on smart Return to Home (RTH) is crucial. From your description, it sounds like adjusting RTH parameters could be key – some drones allow you to set a reserve battery level for RTH, avoiding those nail-biting situations. Considering your experiences with Anafi, it might be worth checking if firmware updates are available, as these often address performance issues. Also, with urban flying, obstacle sensors can sometimes misinterpret surroundings, affecting calculations. And hey, for personalized advice and solutions tailored to your drone model and specific challenges, our team at Drone Motion would be happy to help – we've dealt with various scenarios and might have just the insights you need. Safe flying! Cheers!
 

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