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P3 Spots Plane

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by flyNfrank, Nov 28, 2015.

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  1. flyNfrank

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    On occasion I will see either a plane or helicopters that appear to be below the 400ft altitude mark. You know since you have been flying your P3 you have a better idea what altitude height levels are just by looking in some cases.

    A week or so ago I was making some test flights near my usual fly area. I could hear a plane off in the not too far distance as it was getting louder. I walked around to the side of the house and I was finally able to see the plane. Right away my 1st thought was this plane is going down. Nobody flies this low. Then I realized I needed to try and catch this on video using the P3 and being a little shook up I did my best to get it in view as soon as I could.

    So there my aircraft was at 190ft, you can see the plane was maybe 90ft higher. One of the neighbors said he also saw it and said it looked like someone was trying to fly below the radar. Anyway, I did manage to get a little of it on video.


     
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  2. dottat4

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    Hate to say it but as a pilot of small planes like that he very well could have been 500 agl. When we fly into congested airspace we constantly get vertical comparisons throw at us by close quarters we operate it. It's amazing once you are up there how little difference 500 feet appears when airborne. Would be even less for your view since already 200 feet.

    You look to see if you can discern a tail number?

    I might just have to get someone to fly my bird and do a 500 foot flyby at some point to see what it looks like. You don't live in PA do ya?

    Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
     
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  3. cnynctry

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    My bet is the aircraft was at least 500ft. Hard to tell from a video but my experience of 30 years as an air traffic controller 500 ft will not look very high. The larger the aircraft the lower they appear than they actually are.
     
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  4. snerd

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    Just a "like" for the thread title................... what a turnaround................ drone spots plane lol!!!
     
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  5. Wibble

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    I have always questioned the 400' limit in the UK for drones. Last weekend I had to be careful as there were 2 light aircraft and a paraglider all flying below 400'. Then of course we get lots of military aircraft flying in the mountains around where I live - sometimes below the level of my house!
     
  6. alokbhargava

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    So scary
     
  7. hog guts

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    How did you get the altitude on the screen and was it coming from telemetry data and if so from where subtitle info or log file from bird?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  8. Basald

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    ill have to start posting some stuff like this. There are multiple air fields near the beach I fly at, commercial, private and military...most pilots seem to think sand and water means no hard deck. I often have to poke my head out of the shade while descending to avoid helicopters and small planes...we're talking very very close proximity.
     
  9. flyNfrank

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    Wow that altitude guess has me surprised. Even though I saw all of this in person, there is noway I would 2nd guess someone who has that much traffic controller experience.
     
  10. flyNfrank

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    I have to get bored to put videos like this together anymore. And it's because it takes too long. This short video took around 1 1/2hrs. But even though this one was very generic, I still feel like they all need some kind of attention.

    That is actual flight log data.
     
  11. SteveMann

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    How about someone with 1200 hours in a Cessna? That airplane was easily at or above 500 ft.

    The human eye is absolutely the worst instrument for determining height and distance.
     
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  12. Luap

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    Nice! What converter are you using and what data are you using for airbrake?
     
  13. 383tdawg

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  14. olof Ekbergh

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    That plane was at least 500' agl. probably more like 700-1000'. A bit hard to tell with the wide angle lens on the P3.

    How can I tell. Easy. Any plane above the horizon is above you, any plane at your altitude or below will be below the horizon. This plane was well above the horizon.

    As a GA pilot I am very used to spotting traffic and If I had been in plane I would not have worried. There are two things to look for in traffic, right on the horizon (they are at your altitude) and constant bearing (you are on a collision course).

    People on the ground are terrible at estimating an aircrafts altitude and they always appear to be much lower than they actually are. That is why the FAA usually discount most reports of low flying GA and military aircraft.
     
  15. flyNfrank

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    cxx

    I live on the opposite side of the river from a college known for aeronautics and astronautics. Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger, Amilia Earhart, Neil Armstrong and around 21 other astronauts have attended the university. I have on average about 6+ aircraft that fly near or over my house each day. That number can increase 4-5 times on a saturday. I'd say half of these planes are students from the college. I also live 1 mile from a highway that travels from Chicago to Indianapolis, and during the week days there is 2-3 helicopters that fly along side the highway generally the same times of the day as if they were flying to and from work.

    I was not able to see the plane on the monitor and did my best to follow it by sound

    I used "pitch" data on the airbrake gauge.
     
  16. skyhighdiver

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    I had a scare one day too, check out the shadow
    Plane.jpg
     
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  17. dirtybum

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    That looks like 300' IMO
     
  18. Oso

    Oso

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    I have a question for those of you who are good at guessing altitudes.

    I have two tall trees in my yard, both about 65 feet. Perhaps 2-3 times per month a helicopter flies right over my house and blows the leaves on my two tall trees. It is also crazy loud and I can feel it wherever I am in the house.

    Ever since I have had a P3, I've guessed that these helicopters are flying well below 400 feet. So far I haven't been fast enough to get a good look at them (for identification) or get a picture. Even if I did, I have no idea who to call or if anyone would even care.

    Is there an exception for helicopters regarding altitude in a residential area? Also, how low would a helicopter need to be flying for it to blow the leaves on my trees?
     
  19. Wibble

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    I don't know about in the USA but in the UK the military and the police are exempt from the low flying regulations.
    Downdraught depends on a lot of things - hovering would be far worse than forward flight.
     
  20. DroneWorxUK

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    As a professional helicopter and plane pilot with 000's flying hours, 21yrs aviating, offshore/onshore/worldwide, when I saw the video above I'd have said the plane was easily at 500' but it isn't easy to be exact. If a helicopter is causing trees to move be due to its downwash in forward flight he must literally be 2-3 blade diameters above it. Just to add certain helicopters will make the air vibrate as if it's right next to you, but that is usually only when it is heading towards you, not away from you, due to the interaction of main rotor blade and tail rotor blade airflow. Just stick to staying legal and keep records and hopefully it'll never be required as proof after the fact. We as drone pilots have a duty of care too, but so do we who fly for a living. And no, I've never seen a drone whilst I've been flying yet. :)