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P4 fly away, drone lost
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2239 46 2018-8-2
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sgttfso
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Have attached 2 different files of the data I pulled from our iPad after our P4 drone flew away while on a missing person search.

Little back ground.   Our agency was called out to look for a missing 83 YO female with dementia who walked away from her home.  I was assigned to fly over a few different fields.
As you can see, I had completed a search pattern over a field and was retuning to my home point. At around 17m 41s into the flight I came to a stop to cross the north side of a road I was standing on the southside of. Shortly after this maneuver, the P4 stated to malufunction and I started to lose control and at 17m 48.2s I lost connection with the P4 and it proceeded to fly away west of my location. I hit the RTH button which started to flash and also changed to manual mode of flying. Nothing I did allowed me to regain control of the P4 or did it return to the starting Home point. On take off and as the P4 malufunctioned, I was visually flying the P4. Otherwise during the flight, I was flying looking at our iPad.

All settings where checked prior to the flight. Battery low warning goes off at 25% which it did in this case. The UAS never decended but just started to rotate, gain altidude then fly off. I lost sight of the P4 in the sun as it flew to the West. There are no obstacles for the UAS to run into as I was now flying over a dirt road and not over the field any longer and was still 20-25 ft off the ground. I have never flown this paticular drone in the direction it flew away to. Looking at Find My Drone, it shows the last location of our P4 was the same area it malfunctioned and flew away from.  We are trying to understand why the our P4 malfunctioned as this is our main UAS and a lost to our agency.

Any suggestions as to why this happened.   

[size=14.6667px]http://www.phantomhelp.com/LogViewer/7EUU472G2POK2XN7OMBY/

[size=14.6667px]https://app.airdata.com/share/jHFxtq
2018-8-2
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DJI Paladin
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Hi there, sorry to hear that. Have you contacted our support team to report the incident and start up a case: (https://www.dji.com/support?site=brandsite&from=nav)?
2018-8-2
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Mark The Droner
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Your text description doesn't talk about the altitude of the AC.  The log shows you flew at about 60 feet height and this was consistent throughout the flight.  The log seems to show it flew to about 1 foot height at the end of the log.  Your text descriptions says you lost control at this point but you don't talk about the drop in altitude.  Is it possible it landed and is sitting at that spot?  
2018-8-2
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sgttfso
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2018-8-2 09:34
Your text description doesn't talk about the altitude of the AC.  The log shows you flew at about 60 feet height and this was consistent throughout the flight.  The log seems to show it flew to about 1 foot height at the end of the log.  Your text descriptions says you lost control at this point but you don't talk about the drop in altitude.  Is it possible it landed and is sitting at that spot?

I can see what the log says however I saw it fly off.  That is what was confusing.  It never descended as low as the log said it did.   
The spot it last shows was directly across from me in an open space. We had numerous people walking this area for 3 days.
2018-8-2
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Pleomax
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Your logs show a CSC operation at 17:45.4 altitude 3m and 79.18m from home point. The P4 lands at 17:48.2 and falls over 79.56m from home point. Have a look around this point.
2018-8-2
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msinger
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At the end of your flight log, it shows you manually descended into the field. The downward sensors detected obstacles as close as 1.6 feet to the bottom of your Phantom. After that point, there were large, unnatural changes to the pitch and roll of the aircraft. That indicates it was crashed into an obstacle below it.


Location.jpg

You should find your Phantom laying in the field if you search at 42.57901687, -114.5843794. Plug those coordinates into the map app on your phone and follow it to that location.
2018-8-2
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sgttfso
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I flew a search pattern around 60 ft until i reached 25% battery then flew back towards my  location. I slowed down, stopped and started to descend and was attempting to fly towards my location to land.
The AC was never at 1 ft elevation as the log shows. That is what is concerning.   The spot it malfunctioned at was directly across from me over an open dirt road in plan site. Numerous people were up and down this road walking and on ATV's for several days.
2018-8-2
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Nigel_
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Are you sure that is the right log?

It appears that the throttle was pulled down and it descended and landed in the field, exactly as commanded.

Here: https://goo.gl/maps/Fbvp5ES3h5A2
2018-8-2
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msinger
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Pleomax Posted at 2018-8-2 10:30
Your logs show a CSC operation at 17:45.4 altitude 3m and 79.18m from home point. The P4 lands at 17:48.2 and falls over 79.56m from home point. Have a look around this point.

The OP was flying a P4, so the CSC would have had to be done like this:



That stick movement caused the P4 to yaw in place quickly and continue to descend until it crashed into the obstacles below it (crops?).
2018-8-2
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Pleomax
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msinger Posted at 2018-8-2 10:40
The OP was flying a P4, so the CSC would have had to be done like this:

[view_image]

My mistake msinger, only fly P3s myself. Thought CSC was common to all phantoms. Still think P4 landed where logs say.
2018-8-2
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msinger
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Pleomax Posted at 2018-8-2 10:55
My mistake msinger, only fly P3s myself. Thought CSC was common to all phantoms. Still think P4 landed where logs say.

Yep, the log definitely shows it tipped over there.
2018-8-2
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Mark The Droner
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Better hurry... somebody's gonna see this thread and go get themselves a free P4
2018-8-2
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sgttfso
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msinger Posted at 2018-8-2 10:57
Yep, the log definitely shows it tipped over there.

I will go back and check the area.   The coordinates are directly across to where I was standing and it was over a dirt road at the time not the corn field and I saw it fly off to the west of where I was standing.
The  input on the controller showing I was trying to land was actually me trying to get it to stop from going up and flying off to the west.

Would make my bosses happy if I was mistaken. Thanks everyone.  Will get back after I check again.
2018-8-2
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msinger
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sgttfso Posted at 2018-8-2 11:07
I will go back and check the area.   The coordinates are directly across to where I was standing and it was over a dirt road at the time not the corn field and I saw it fly off to the west of where I was standing.
The  input on the controller showing I was trying to land was actually me trying to get it to stop from going up and flying off to the west.

FWIW, your log shows your Phantom obeyed your commands and descended directly down into the field (next to the dirt road). It shows no indication of fighting your stick movements or attempting to shoot off to the West.
2018-8-2
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Nigel_
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sgttfso Posted at 2018-8-2 11:07
I will go back and check the area.   The coordinates are directly across to where I was standing and it was over a dirt road at the time not the corn field and I saw it fly off to the west of where I was standing.
The  input on the controller showing I was trying to land was actually me trying to get it to stop from going up and flying off to the west.

Not only does it think it is doing what you asked, but the ultrasonic sensors actually see the ground approach and then it tips over just before touching the ground, not much doubt that it will be within a couple of meters of the last GPS location - a task for the "Find my drone" menu option.
2018-8-2
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sgttfso
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So after spending 2 hours in a corn field that I had looked in prior to today,  there it was about 3 feet off the ground in some stocks. No damage, had not been rained or sprinkled on.
Bottom line I will chalk this up to pilot error and live and learn.

Thank you everyone who replied.
2018-8-2
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msinger
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Great news! I'm happy to hear you were able to find it
2018-8-2
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Mark The Droner
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Congrats!!!
2018-8-2
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Vendex
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Bulgaria
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That's happy end
2018-8-2
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maddox
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sorry to read that
2018-8-2
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Nigel_
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sgttfso Posted at 2018-8-2 14:00
So after spending 2 hours in a corn field that I had looked in prior to today,  there it was about 3 feet off the ground in some stocks. No damage, had not been rained or sprinkled on.
Bottom line I will chalk this up to pilot error and live and learn.

Out of interest, and to help people who have the same issue in future, how far away from the last known position was it?  I assume that if it took 2 hours to find that it wasn't within the normal 5 meters of the "Find my drone" position...

And what are the "stocks" that it was hiding in?   (Some of us don't speak USA English.)

2018-8-3
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msinger
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Corn Stalks
2018-8-3
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Nigel_
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Ahh, thanks, well that makes more sense if that is what a corn field looks like in USA, corn for us is a very different plant!
2018-8-3
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Atlas_Aus
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Thailand
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OOps... Made a mistake
2018-8-3
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Atlas_Aus
First Officer

Thailand
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Hey mate,

My first post in this forum.... I have yet to buy a drone but am looking into it right now...

Luck was on your side indeed
2018-8-3
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Pleomax
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sgttfso Posted at 2018-8-2 11:07
I will go back and check the area.   The coordinates are directly across to where I was standing and it was over a dirt road at the time not the corn field and I saw it fly off to the west of where I was standing.
The  input on the controller showing I was trying to land was actually me trying to get it to stop from going up and flying off to the west.

Glad you found the bird, no damage I hope.

Fly safe.
2018-8-3
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AlanHd
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Just a thought but could there have been another drone in the air and that’s the one you thought was your flyaway.
2018-8-3
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sgttfso
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Just to clarify a few things, it was found in a corn field over 6 ft tall that is used for cattle feed. Very dense.  It was about 3 feet off the ground hanging up the corn stocks.  I was kneeling down right next to it looking at the dirt rows, had a thought that maybe it was hung up, turned to my left and there it was right next to me.  Had walked by that area numerous times and never saw it.

As to how close was it to the shown last GPS coordinates, I used my iPad, turned on the"Find my drone" app and started walking. I lined up the red dot of its last position and the blue dot off my current position. It was really close well within the 5 meters.  Never would have found it with out it.  Should have done this and trusted the app the day it went down. Would have saved a lot of sleepless nights and it being gobbled up at harvest time.  

I charged up the battery that was in the drone when it went down and flew the drone with several different batteries. The battery in the drone when it went down showed 17v, 27 temp, all cells 4.25v after it was recharged.    Just as a precaution, I put a tether on it for few minutes of the first flight and stayed close to the ground.   Satisfied that it was responding to my control input, flew it off the tether.  Even with the winds today with gusts up to 17kts, it flew great.  Downloaded the data from the flights and saw no issues.  Only a couple warnings about the wind.   

Lesson learned, where we live these is a lot of agriculture, desert and forest land, lakes and rivers.   Talking with someone else on a chat group, they had a similar situation.  Close to the same time of day with the sun setting. He did as I did and took his eyes off the drone and when he looked up again he thought his drone had also flown off. Difference was he looked back down at his iPad and saw where it really was and I did not.  My mistake.   

Again, thanks everyone for the input.  My bosses are all smiling again.    Have a great day.

2018-8-3
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Nigel_
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sgttfso Posted at 2018-8-3 12:25
Just to clarify a few things, it was found in a corn field over 6 ft tall that is used for cattle feed. Very dense.  It was about 3 feet off the ground hanging up the corn stocks.  I was kneeling down right next to it looking at the dirt rows, had a thought that maybe it was hung up, turned to my left and there it was right next to me.  Had walked by that area numerous times and never saw it.

As to how close was it to the shown last GPS coordinates, I used my iPad, turned on the"Find my drone" app and started walking. I lined up the red dot of its last position and the blue dot off my current position. It was really close well within the 5 meters.  Never would have found it with out it.  Should have done this and trusted the app the day it went down. Would have saved a lot of sleepless nights and it being gobbled up at harvest time.  


Thanks for the clarification, it makes sense now that I know that your corn field is full of Maize plants!

Normally Find My Drone doesn't help very much, but in this case it should have been the first advice given!
2018-8-3
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Jeff Millard
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sgttfso Posted at 2018-8-3 12:25
Just to clarify a few things, it was found in a corn field over 6 ft tall that is used for cattle feed. Very dense.  It was about 3 feet off the ground hanging up the corn stocks.  I was kneeling down right next to it looking at the dirt rows, had a thought that maybe it was hung up, turned to my left and there it was right next to me.  Had walked by that area numerous times and never saw it.

As to how close was it to the shown last GPS coordinates, I used my iPad, turned on the"Find my drone" app and started walking. I lined up the red dot of its last position and the blue dot off my current position. It was really close well within the 5 meters.  Never would have found it with out it.  Should have done this and trusted the app the day it went down. Would have saved a lot of sleepless nights and it being gobbled up at harvest time.  

Awesome that you got the drone back. Did anyone find the lady?

Jeff
2018-8-4
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sgttfso
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Yes unfortunately not the outcome we had hoped for.
2018-8-4
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Mark The Droner
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twin falls idaho missing 83
2018-8-4
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Lethal
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Awesome that you found it OK and it is operational. A lesson learned!
2018-8-5
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WebParrot
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sgttfso Posted at 2018-8-3 12:25
Just to clarify a few things, it was found in a corn field over 6 ft tall that is used for cattle feed. Very dense.  It was about 3 feet off the ground hanging up the corn stocks.  I was kneeling down right next to it looking at the dirt rows, had a thought that maybe it was hung up, turned to my left and there it was right next to me.  Had walked by that area numerous times and never saw it.

As to how close was it to the shown last GPS coordinates, I used my iPad, turned on the"Find my drone" app and started walking. I lined up the red dot of its last position and the blue dot off my current position. It was really close well within the 5 meters.  Never would have found it with out it.  Should have done this and trusted the app the day it went down. Would have saved a lot of sleepless nights and it being gobbled up at harvest time.  

This is a great forum and all the "real" experts and their knowledge are on display.  Makes me proud.  Glad you found the aircraft.  FWIW, I also fly a Parrot BeBop2 and the app for it includes a Find-My-Drone feature that caused the aircraft to beep.  I included that in a feature request to DJI.  Might have helped here, causing you to look UPwards :-)

Thanks so much for sharing and finalizing the story/issue for all of us to learn from.
2018-8-6
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TimDerLauch
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2018-8-2 11:03
[view_image]Better hurry... somebody's gonna see this thread and go get themselves a free P4

Yes, Hurry !
2018-8-6
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TimDerLauch
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sgttfso Posted at 2018-8-2 14:00
So after spending 2 hours in a corn field that I had looked in prior to today,  there it was about 3 feet off the ground in some stocks. No damage, had not been rained or sprinkled on.
Bottom line I will chalk this up to pilot error and live and learn.

You had luck !
2018-8-6
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fans21546423
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Man thats great news. like finding your child uninjured....
2018-8-6
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Mark The Droner
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WebParrot Posted at 2018-8-6 03:57
This is a great forum and all the "real" experts and their knowledge are on display.  Makes me proud.  Glad you found the aircraft.  FWIW, I also fly a Parrot BeBop2 and the app for it includes a Find-My-Drone feature that caused the aircraft to beep.  I included that in a feature request to DJI.  Might have helped here, causing you to look UPwards :-)

Thanks so much for sharing and finalizing the story/issue for all of us to learn from.

The "real" expert is msinger.  He's the one who developed the phantomhelp log viewer - a truly amazing tool, seamlessly enabling anybody not only a quick view of a readable DJI Go app log, but also a google maps view of the flight path and even the ability to download the log in .csv format in an instant.  And he's the one who allows everybody on the planet unlimited use of it.  I'm certain his web page has enabled dozens and dozens of pilots to retrieve their lost DJI aircrafts which likely would never have been found, and he does it all thanklessly, quietly remaining in the shadows, never asking for a dime.

Thanks for your post.
2018-8-6
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ALABAMA
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Mark The Droner Posted at 2018-8-6 14:32
The "real" expert is msinger.  He's the one who developed the phantomhelp log viewer - a truly amazing tool, seamlessly enabling anybody not only a quick view of a readable DJI Go app log, but also a google maps view of the flight path and even the ability to download the log in .csv format in an instant.  And he's the one who allows everybody on the planet unlimited use of it.  I'm certain his web page has enabled dozens and dozens of pilots to retrieve their lost DJI aircrafts which likely would never have been found, and he does it all thanklessly, quietly remaining in the shadows, never asking for a dime.

Thanks for your post.

I totally agree.  An unsung hero for sure!
2018-8-6
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Nigel_
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WebParrot Posted at 2018-8-6 03:57
This is a great forum and all the "real" experts and their knowledge are on display.  Makes me proud.  Glad you found the aircraft.  FWIW, I also fly a Parrot BeBop2 and the app for it includes a Find-My-Drone feature that caused the aircraft to beep.  I included that in a feature request to DJI.  Might have helped here, causing you to look UPwards :-)

Thanks so much for sharing and finalizing the story/issue for all of us to learn from.

If it is still powered and you have contact then you can turn on the ESC beeping, you can hear that from a long way off!
2018-8-6
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