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Battery failure (again!)

Discussion in 'Phantom 2 Vision + Discussion' started by Serpent, May 6, 2015.

  1. Serpent

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    This is now the 4th battery failure I've had with the Phantom 2 Vision. All of my batteries had been charged about 20-35 times. My batteries were bought in twos at different times.

    Each time there is failure the drone starts to auto-descend. This time it happened over a small forest during RTH. I realise it was risky to fly in a spot without visibility but I'm comfortable enough to have an idea of it's position and rely on RTH in most cases.

    Video follows:

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/bqdwdv7ux9yp4jg/DJI00106_battery_failure.mp4?dl=0

    The remarkable thing was the motors were still spinning after the crash. It was about 20 meters up a tree. I ran into the forest with spiders, leeches and prickly foliage. Following the sound I was able to locate the drone and the tree it was hanging from the branches of. I took GPS position from my phone to be able to return to the spot.

    After that we found some very helpful park rangers who came and tried to help by shaking the tree, then trying to climb the tree (yes about 20 meters up) and then throwing small branches up the tree without luck. I was thinking a long ladder with a long pole may dislodge it. Eventually more people came (a total of 5) and one was able to climb a small (25cm diameter approx.) slippery tree. I was amazed. They got it down. Gimbal was hanging off and drone was covered in green from the leaves and branches.

    After a big effort to clean up the drone and re-attach the hanging gimbal she was flying fine again within a few hours. Few small scratches mind you. A big storm came later that day...

    DJI sucks at batteries. I really hope it improves with the Phantom 3.

    Lessons learnt:
    - If in doubt of battery failure without visibility switch to Atta mode and full up on left stick to keep it from descending. Then try to bring her home.
    - Be extra careful to fly on batteries <60% charge even for short flights.

    DJI needs to improve:
    -Audio alert on mobile device and drone when battery problem
    -In event of drone crash cut the motors and make loud audio alert until the battery depletes.
    -In event of drone RTH then also use audio alerts from drone when coming close to home.

    In my case the 'Find my Phantom' function didn't help as it had lost the video signal before and it wouldn't even show the last know position.
     
    #1 Serpent, May 6, 2015
    Last edited: May 6, 2015
  2. Birdman

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    I had a similar problem with a battery. First time the V2 descended into a bean field, second time it hit a pine tree and crashed. Those bad batteries suddenly drop in voltage enough to send the V2 home. Threw it away after the second event. Hope you rewarded that person for retrieving your copter!
     
  3. RoyVa

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    After 20 cycles (charges) of the battery are you reconditioning it by discharging it to at least 8 percent then doing a full charge?
     
  4. BonAerials

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    Here's a good video from Mic Bergsma explaining the DJI's battery and how to check its life.
     
    Realtour Pro likes this.
  5. macsoft

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    How I discharge my batteries every 20/30 flights:

    [​IMG]
     
  6. Serpent

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    Royva: Yes, I did do a full discharge around every 20 cycles. I keep a log of all my battery use although given all these problems i started to feel the log has little use other than to see a history of flights.
    Beanman: Yes, substantial tip. He refused it at first but eventually accepted.
     
  7. RoyVa

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    Did you check the battery life like the video shows. This is an interest to us all as the key to getting the quad back in our lovely hands during and after a flight is one of the major components... The battery. I guess I take it for granted as long as I have a full charge I'm good. Seems like that is not really the case and we need a good method to get a good warm fuzzy dealing the the battery is going to do its job. Don't want a $129.00 part to cause a $1200 loss.
    I have 4 batteries and rotate them for flights. I keep them numbered so I know which is next. Now I need to figure a way to get a method of confidence for my batteries.

    How do some of you guys do it?
     
  8. macsoft

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    I also have 4 numbered batteries. I also have the date of each battery first flight stamped on the battery so I know the battery age. every 20 cycles I fully discharge each battery.. and check battery's life.
    My newest battery is one of those with LCD, and there is lots of helpful info on the LCD including battery health.
    I don't know what more can I do.. it will happen eventually.. I hope I'm not over water when it does, most my videos are over water.
    You have to train yourself for that day. the only possible maybe-salvation is switch to Atti and full throttle it.
    Until then: enjoy your bird
     
  9. Serpent

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    Dear RoyVa + Macsoft,
    I also numbered my batteries and rotate them. I kept (until a few months ago when 3 of my batteries had a problem already) a log of every flight and charge capacity level too.
    If having a battery fault (battery icon shows red on Vision App sometimes at >50% capacity), my recommendation is flick your S1 switch to Atta to regain control (if only for a short time) and then full up on left stick if at a low altitude (will give you about .5m of height per second) or about 75% up on left stick will keep it level and bring her home as fast as you can. This is from experience where it happened on my previous batteries.
    In the last event (video in first message) I had lost signal over a forest and it had gone into RTH and then the problem occured and i wasn't able to think fast enough.
    Talking to a guy in the RC shop yesterday he said the battery failure was sometimes caused by not keeping it at 50% during non-use times. Who has the time to nurture 4 batteries to around 50% level for a week or two when i'm not flying. If it really neeeded this so much why don't they make an option in the so called 'intelligent battery' to stop chargeing when at 50% after flicking a switch/ press a button. Or have an easy tway to discharge to 50% then turn off.