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Drone disconnect and recovery...
1076 20 2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
United States
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Hi everyone,

On Sunday, I was flying at the Top of the World in Laguna Beach (actually called Alta Laguna Park, but I digress) and my Mavic Air disconnected.

I was flying using my awesome RC/iPad Pro setup, latest firmware/app, everything updated, the works. The drone stopped responding, I got the grey background on my app, indicating that I had lost signal. The app then crashed completely and just closed. The drone hovered for a while as I fumbled with my controls, and proceeded to haul ass gods-know-where. I restarted the app, but it wouldn't connect. I restarted the RC and finally got connected.

I cancelled RTH and manually flew it back from wherever it was going. Landed safely, so I'm happy with that ending. =)

Flight log before disconnection

Flight log after disconnection

Not sure what anyone can garner from these logs and this experience, other than it having been a random hiccup, but I post this here in case there is something that I can learn from this to avoid in the future.

If anyone has any insight, by all means. I'm scratching my head. xD
2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
United States
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Can't seem to embed from SkyPixel, but here's a of the park. =)
2018-3-27
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LoSBoL
First Officer
Flight distance : 271650 ft
Netherlands
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Maybe a bit of insight about the haul ass bit. When you completely lose connection, the Mavic Air should rise to RTH height after 10 seconds of hovering. It then retraces the route you've flown. so that could be the haul ass to god-knows-where. If connection still hasn't been reastablished after 60 seconds, only then will it take the straight route home.



2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
United States
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LoSBoL Posted at 2018-3-27 09:37
Maybe a bit of insight about the haul ass bit. When you completely lose connection, the Mavic Air should rise to RTH height after 10 seconds of hovering. It then retraces the route you've flown. so that could be the haul ass to god-knows-where. If connection still hasn't been reastablished after 60 seconds, only then will it take the straight route home.

The battery was at 10% and it was in RTH mode when I recovered, though, and still booking it away from where I was.

Do the logs look like the RTH moved to a different spot, you think?
2018-3-27
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Gunship9
Captain
United States
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Is that a nice area clear of radio traffic?  Your channel use page have any red channels in use?  Likely just someone's cell phone trying to link to their new GoPro Hero 6's WiFi broadcast so they can remote control the camera.  I think the rule is the channel goes to the strongest transmitter.
2018-3-27
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Wachtberger
Captain
Flight distance : 261509 ft
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First of all I am happy that all has ended well. Then a few things are noteworthy in your flightrecords. Before switching into Sport mode you have had two times this warning "Strong Interference to Aircraft. Signal interruption may be more likely. Fly with caution." but you seem to have taken no action in response but have just continued the flight. I have no idea what could have triggered such interference in the given environment, nevertheless I personally would have returned immediately to find out what was wrong. During flight in Sport mode you got the same warning again but continued the flight.
In the second flight record you got "Strong Wireless Interference. Fly with caution." Thus there must have been something around you that has caused interference.
Once again, I am glad that all went well at the end and others can certainly tell you more.
2018-3-27
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LoSBoL
First Officer
Flight distance : 271650 ft
Netherlands
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ChaosKnign Posted at 2018-3-27 09:42
The battery was at 10% and it was in RTH mode when I recovered, though, and still booking it away from where I was.

Do the logs look like the RTH moved to a different spot, you think?

I don't know, I'm no expert in flightlogs, but others could maybe look at it and explain further.
2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
United States
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Wachtberger Posted at 2018-3-27 09:47
First of all I am happy that all has ended well. Then a few things are noteworthy in your flightrecords. Before switching into Sport mode you have had two times this warning "Strong Interference to Aircraft. Signal interruption may be more likely. Fly with caution." but you seem to have no action in response but have just continued the flight. I have no idea what could have triggered such interference in the given environment, nevertheless I personally would have returned immediately to find out what was wrong. During flight in Sport mode you got the same warning again but continued the flight.
In the second flight record you got "Strong Wireless Interference. Fly with caution." Thus there must have been something around you that has caused interference.
Once again, I am glad that all went well at the end and others can certainly tell you more.

Right, I never thought about stopping flying due to the "Wireless Interference" warning, seeing as I've seen it before and usually temporary. Not much I could do if I flew back and kicked the tires, if it's wireless interference, so I "Fly with caution" as suggested by the warning. =)

So a strong wireless signal can be enough to bring down the app and RC?

And to reply to an earlier post, as you can probably see in the panorama, there is nothing up there. No towers or transmitters that I can see. Nothing obvious that would transmit signals to interfere with mine.
2018-3-27
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Wachtberger
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Flight distance : 261509 ft
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ChaosKnign Posted at 2018-3-27 11:11
Right, I never thought about stopping flying due to the "Wireless Interference" warning, seeing as I've seen it before and usually temporary. Not much I could do if I flew back and kicked the tires, if it's wireless interference, so I "Fly with caution" as suggested by the warning. =)

So a strong wireless signal can be enough to bring down the app and RC?

Ok, understood. "Strong Interference to Aircraft. Signal interruption may be more likely. Fly with caution." to me personally means to fly back and check what might be wrong. I don't want to say that you have to follow what I would do. But what I definitely would not do after having had this warning twice is to switch into Sport Mode as if nothing had happened. And from here I leave this case to more experienced pilots than me to further explain. Good luck for your future flights and hopefully happy landings!
2018-3-27
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Cruicer
lvl.2
Flight distance : 15764 ft
United States
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Wachtberger Posted at 2018-3-27 11:44
Ok, understood. "Strong Interference to Aircraft. Signal interruption may be more likely. Fly with caution." to me personally means to fly back and check what might be wrong. I don't want to say that you have to follow what I would do. But what I definitely would not do after having had this warning twice is to switch into Sport Mode as if nothing had happened. And from here I leave this case to more experienced pilots than me to further explain. Good luck for your future flights and hopefully happy landings!

Around what time did this happen to you?  I had an almost fly away on Monday at around 6:00pm ET.  And I posted to the forum (Spark forum) and someone made mention of a geomagnetic storm that is occurring...Really wondering if that has something to do with these...

https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/products/3-day-geomagnetic-forecast

Here is the link to my forum post:

https://forum.dji.com/thread-142144-1-1.html
2018-3-27
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hallmark007
Captain
Flight distance : 8627812 ft
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There is part of your log missing from approx 13.25 to 14.50, but nowhere in your log does it show disconnect from RC, unless it happened in this period, your aircraft raised altitude in this missing period by approx 100ft now unless you had RTH set at 254 ft then only way aircraft can climb is if controller pushes throttle forward, you also say you restarted RC , but once you switched it off or lost connection it should have went into RTH mode after 3 seconds, but because your aircraft hovered this suggests that you switched off RC and then switched it back on, which then results in aircraft hovering waiting for input from controller.
It looks to me only time you lost signal was when you switched off RC and aircraft behaved as it should from your actions.
Interference shouldn’t have anything to do with app, but I have had app close out before, it’s important not to have other apps running in the background and if it is cellular then switch to airplane mode.
2018-3-27
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Wachtberger
Captain
Flight distance : 261509 ft
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Cruicer Posted at 2018-3-27 12:27
Around what time did this happen to you?  I had an almost fly away on Monday at around 6:00pm ET.  And I posted to the forum (Spark forum) and someone made mention of a geomagnetic storm that is occurring...Really wondering if that has something to do with these...

https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/products/3-day-geomagnetic-forecast

It did not happen to me, this was a response to OP. Just read the thread.
2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
United States
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Cruicer Posted at 2018-3-27 12:27
Around what time did this happen to you?  I had an almost fly away on Monday at around 6:00pm ET.  And I posted to the forum (Spark forum) and someone made mention of a geomagnetic storm that is occurring...Really wondering if that has something to do with these...

https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/products/3-day-geomagnetic-forecast

Happened around 1:30 pm PT on Sunday.

Didn't think about the storm thing. I have the PolarPro app that supposedly tracks that. I'll take a look at that next time.

Thanks!
2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
United States
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-3-27 12:33
There is part of your log missing from approx 13.25 to 14.50, but nowhere in your log does it show disconnect from RC, unless it happened in this period, your aircraft raised altitude in this missing period by approx 100ft now unless you had RTH set at 254 ft then only way aircraft can climb is if controller pushes throttle forward, you also say you restarted RC , but once you switched it off or lost connection it should have went into RTH mode after 3 seconds, but because your aircraft hovered this suggests that you switched off RC and then switched it back on, which then results in aircraft hovering waiting for input from controller.
It looks to me only time you lost signal was when you switched off RC and aircraft behaved as it should from your actions.
Interference shouldn’t have anything to do with app, but I have had app close out before, it’s important not to have other apps running in the background and if it is cellular then switch to airplane mode.

Right, at the beginning of that 1 minute or so, the RC had a green light, but the app was in a disconnected status, I had a grey bar.

Then the app crashed. I rebooted, but it wouldn't connect. At that point, I restarted the RC. During that time, I did see the Mavic move around, but it was quite windy. I may or may not have been leaning on the sticks and/or jostling them to see if I could get a response from the drone, I don't quite remember, I went into panic mode.

When it started moving purposefully, it turned away from me and started flying southwestwards, at which point I regained control and flew it back.

First time I had the app close out on me like that, and was wondering which one leads to the other and such. Thanks for your input. ;D
2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
United States
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Wachtberger Posted at 2018-3-27 11:44
Ok, understood. "Strong Interference to Aircraft. Signal interruption may be more likely. Fly with caution." to me personally means to fly back and check what might be wrong. I don't want to say that you have to follow what I would do. But what I definitely would not do after having had this warning twice is to switch into Sport Mode as if nothing had happened. And from here I leave this case to more experienced pilots than me to further explain. Good luck for your future flights and hopefully happy landings!

Sorry, I wasn't being testy with my reply. xD

I simply meant that since it's a yellow warning, it never struck me as something to be overly concerned about, since experiencing wireless interferences is something that should be expected when operating in commonly shared spectrums.

It's good advice, I simply wouldn't know what to physically look at the drone to solve for this, hence bringing it back isn't a normal reaction for me.
2018-3-27
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Wachtberger
Captain
Flight distance : 261509 ft
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ChaosKnign Posted at 2018-3-27 13:20
Sorry, I wasn't being testy with my reply. xD

I simply meant that since it's a yellow warning, it never struck me as something to be overly concerned about, since experiencing wireless interferences is something that should be expected when operating in commonly shared spectrums.

Again understood ;-) My very personal advice that has no authorative capacity at all would be to reconsider your "normal reactions" when flying a not so cheap drone if you want to enjoy it for hopefully long time. Once again, I wish you always happy landings!
2018-3-27
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hallmark007
Captain
Flight distance : 8627812 ft
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ChaosKnign Posted at 2018-3-27 13:16
Right, at the beginning of that 1 minute or so, the RC had a green light, but the app was in a disconnected status, I had a grey bar.

Then the app crashed. I rebooted, but it wouldn't connect. At that point, I restarted the RC. During that time, I did see the Mavic move around, but it was quite windy. I may or may not have been leaning on the sticks and/or jostling them to see if I could get a response from the drone, I don't quite remember, I went into panic mode.


App going grey is connection between RC and app or aircraft to RC to app, not RC to Aircraft , I have a feeling that there was no loss of signal between RC and Aircraft until you turned off RC, and once you turned back on it reconnected.

Remember if app crashes fingers off sticks and just reboot app, although not common it can happen and if it does and your out of VLOS just hit RTH or pause button and aircraft will just hover..
2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
United States
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Holy moly, Batman! In my panic I didn’t even remember that there was a pause button.

It was RTH, but I assume going to the wrong homepoint, since it was going away from me.

Thanks for reminding me about the pause. =D
2018-3-27
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hallmark007
Captain
Flight distance : 8627812 ft
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ChaosKnign Posted at 2018-3-27 14:56
Holy moly, Batman! In my panic I didn’t even remember that there was a pause button.

It was RTH, but I assume going to the wrong homepoint, since it was going away from me.

It’s not going away from you it’s retracing in failsafe and how you know this is once RC signal reconnected it hovered, those are the correct procedures, so not much wrong, except app crashing.

In many situations pause is your best friend.
2018-3-27
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DJI Diana
Administrator
Flight distance : 2408 ft

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Hi ChaosKnign, I'm sorry to hear about the issue that you have experienced. Glad to know that your drone landed safely at the end. Normally, the disconnection might be caused by the magnetic interference of the environment, so we do recommend our customer to fly a drone in an open area, where the GPS is good and no magnetic interference. Please make sure you have updated the latest firmware success and you can change another open area to try if there is still a problem, if still no good luck, it is recommended to provide the original flight data from the aircraft, we'll look into it. Thanks for your support!
2018-3-27
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ChaosKnign
Second Officer
Flight distance : 402877 ft
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Néih hóu Diana!

Thanks for the reply. All’s well that ends well. Just wanted to get community feedback to help me possibly avoid my mistakes in the future.

I find our community quite helpful and appreciate everyone’s feedback and help!
2018-3-27
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