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  1. Kevin O

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    I've used the DJI Go and Litchi applications and find they do work well. Does anyone produce an app that allows the user to pilot the P4 horizontally while setting within the app a distance to stay above the surface?
    I realize the downward looking sonar is only functional up to height of 10 meters.

    My primary interest is flight at about 10 to 15 feet altitude above the surface below the P4 and maintaining that as the terrain below is changing.
    Ideally the app would allow the use of waypoints similar to Litchi but with a setting for altitude from the deck when flying within the operational range of the sonar.

    Thank you
     
  2. Cobs

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    I think you would run out of waypoints before you got too far due to the constant changing height of the ground, not sure how many Litchi supports but i bet its not too great a number, FPV/Goggles would be better for this i think.
     
  3. Kevin O

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    For my application there would be multiple missions but not many waypoints per mission.

    The company I work for has over 14,000 miles of natural gas pipelines of which a majority requires walking or flying multiple times each year. The requirement is mandated by the federal government.

    We currently use manpower to literally walk the right of way (ROW) or a contract helicopter service to fly it.
    Each mission would be a segment of pipeline and if we had the ability to stay a specific height from the changing terrain its use would be very simple.

    Many of the ROW's are as narrow as 25 feet and canopied a bit by bordering trees. Flying under the canopie without fear of branch strikes would be ideal.

    A month or so ago my office purchased a P4 with the intent of experimenting with it to fly and video ROW's and construction sites.

    We also have forward looking infrared cameras we use for facility inspections and are looking at adding the FLIR camera to the P4

    While I have my own P4 a colleague and I will be going for our commercial UAV license to operate the one owned by my employer.

    Having my own is a blast but it's hard not to so many commercial applications for these things.
     
  4. Cobs

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    Ahh yeh that makes more sense now, flying below the canopy is great fun (from my goggles view), id say with good planning you could create those multiple missions yourself with Litchi and load them as and when needed, just name or number them appropriately to match the pipeline section your working on. I havent used litchi yet but i understand how it works.
     
  5. Rapfife

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    Use Google Earth to create a path over the pipeline. Set the height to be relative to the ground, add your way points. Export it to a .KML file and import that to Litchi. Done it works great.
     
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  6. Johnny Bellew

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    Can I get a little more info on your comment? Are you using google earth within the Litchi app? If so, how do you see the topographical nature of the area? I have just purchased the Litchi app today. Got it figured out as far as setting my height above launching point, but I seen nowhere that showed me a topo perspective. If you could, could you explain? Thanks
     
  7. rustlecrowe

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    You need to use Google Earth Pro on the PC create a path and then export as a KML into the mission hub on the LItchi website.

     
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  8. Kevin O

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    I understand using Google Earth for this but I'm interested in flying in areas where terrain will have been disturbed with spoils piles around and newly constructed facilities.

    If there were a way to take advantage of the downward looking sonar as a terrain following input to the controls it would be ideal.

    Realizing they P4 would need to fly slow in order to make corrections but that would not be a concern.

    Thank you


    Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots
     
  9. brothers

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    You might want to have a look at the new DJI Mavic, which has a height-above-ground mode.
     
  10. Johnny Bellew

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    Man that explained it nicely. Well done and thank you very much! I will be using this as I live in hilly terrain. I downloaded google earth pro last night but had no idea where to go from there. Just realized your post today. Thanks! Love this forum! Nice bunch of people.


    Sent from my iPad using PhantomPilots
     
  11. John Locke

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    Location:
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    Litchi's online mission hub provides elevation data for the terrain.
     
  12. Kevin O

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    If the Mavic could be flown with a iPad instead of a smart phone I might consider it, otherwise, I like it but it's not a replacement for my P4 n
     
  13. Frankc

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    I do not use Litchi and, at the moment anyway, have no actual use for this function. But I just wanted to say nicely explained. I love step-by-step clear instructions. Well done.
     
  14. Erised

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    14,000 miles @ 4 miles per battery is 3500 flights x 20 minutes is 1167 hours. Every thing is doable but this seems un-practical. Getting access every 8 miles to the pipe line is impossible plus crossing rivers and creeks, then there is the weather, weather, weather. Hire a chopper with a flir and get the job done in a month not a year(s). IMO
     
    #14 Erised, Nov 23, 2016
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2016
    Johnny Bellew likes this.
  15. AnchorageAk

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    I read where the University of Alaska was working with Alyeska , the people in charge of the pipe line, to use drones to monitor it. I believe the University has a drone program. it may be the Fairbanks branch of the University. Which would make more sense being closer to the pipe line. You might want to try getting a whole of the company.

    I think you might need a bigger drone. I have been told many times you can't put a Flir on a P4, but they do put them on the P3. Doesn't make much sense to me.