Please select Into the mobile phone version | Continue to access the computer ver.
My drone fell out of the sky - lost control after auto la...
1991 32 2018-8-30
Uploading and Loding Picture ...(0/1)
o(^-^)o
insular_au
lvl.2

Australia
Offline

Hi all, I signed up here to post my brief experience with the Mavic Air, and the now follow-up warranty claim I am going to have to make (Australia)

I took it with me to South America as it was the most portable drone for travelling, and got some great footage in Chile before I moved on to Bolivia. The main draw of Bolivia is the salt flats and that's where it all went wrong.

The whole area is completely open (apparently the elevation and openness make it the best place in the world for satellite coverage) and I launched off a portable heli pad flew around a bit (first battery I took off and landed without problem). I then changed the battery, went higher (to the maximum allowed), flew over the island in the middle of the salt flats for a nice top down view (I couldn't even hear it from where I was) then I got a must return to home message. I swiped on my phone to initiate the auto return to home command and it turned around and flew back to me. I could hear it above me but for some reason it wasn't descending at all!

I completely lost control of my drone. The phone was still responsive but I couldn't do anything to cancel the auto landing which wasn't working!

I stood there absolutely helpless as the battery ran out and it came crashing to the ground. I obviously was looking up to see if I could try and catch it (or dodge it).

Obviously the sound and watching it coming crashing to the ground was devastating. Imagine if there were people around? I've no doubt it could have seriously injured someone under different circumstances.

Has anyone heard of someone having this kind of problem? To me it seems like a major software glitch has caused this crash as I had no such issue prior to this, even having an auto landing take place the last time I used it due to battery low where I was able to guide it safely off the road as I sprinted to it to make sure nobody would steal it.

2018-8-30
Use props
Hellsgate
Captain
Flight distance : 1991555 ft
Australia
Offline

Could you please upload your flight log to this site.
https://www.phantomhelp.com/logviewer/Upload/
Once that is done post a link to the file here so we can have a look at it and hopefully ascertain what whent wrong
2018-8-30
Use props
Wachtberger
Captain
Flight distance : 261509 ft
Germany
Offline

Have there been any clouds or fog?
2018-8-30
Use props
gnirtS
Captain
Flight distance : 2993497 ft
United Kingdom
Offline

Or windy at altitude?
2018-8-30
Use props
insular_au
lvl.2

Australia
Offline

Nope no clouds at all. No fog. It was a clear day. There was virtually no wind (and I had previously flown in much windier conditions (but as a new drone owner I never flew where it was too windy). It seemed to hover over a certain point near my position and do nothing. I tried repeatedly to cancel the auto landing and manually descend but it just kept saying 'failed to cancel landing'.

In fact I saw someone with an Air fly a few days later at a very open windy spot where the flamingos are and the auto stabilisation of the thing was amazing. I thought he was going to crash but he managed to bring it back and land it safely.

Is there anything in a flight log that might have my personal details on the web? eg. email, name etc.

I put the thing back in its case and haven't looked at it since - it was in April! I can't bear to take a closer look at the damage. Haven't tried to start it up either.
2018-8-30
Use props
Wachtberger
Captain
Flight distance : 261509 ft
Germany
Offline

insular_au Posted at 2018-8-30 03:20
Nope no clouds at all. No fog. It was a clear day. There was virtually no wind (and I had previously flown in much windier conditions (but as a new drone owner I never flew where it was too windy). It seemed to hover over a certain point near my position and do nothing. I tried repeatedly to cancel the auto landing and manually descend but it just kept saying 'failed to cancel landing'.

In fact I saw someone with an Air fly a few days later at a very open windy spot where the flamingos are and the auto stabilisation of the thing was amazing. I thought he was going to crash but he managed to bring it back and land it safely.

Your flightrecord does not contain any personal data. Only location of flight.
2018-8-30
Use props
insular_au
lvl.2

Australia
Offline

https://www.phantomhelp.com/logviewer/VVX3SO5OQ6RTREQFC3E7/
2018-8-30
Use props
DJI Paladin
Super Moderator
Flight distance : 318 ft

Offline

Sorry for all the trouble. Have you contacted our support team to start up a case: https://www.dji.com/support?site=brandsite&from=nav? We have the professional data analysis team who would do their best to find out the crash reason and then the corresponding resolution would be provided. If you already have a case number, please provide it here so that I can check it on my end.  Thanks for your support.
2018-8-30
Use props
Wachtberger
Captain
Flight distance : 261509 ft
Germany
Offline


The flighrecord shows that only at the very end it really started descending (before falling from 235 meter height which is a bit less than half of the height it was at before) but provides no explanation (at least to me) why it refused to descend before, despite being in auto landing mode. Have you already provided the blackbox data to DJI for analysis?
2018-8-30
Use props
ghostrdr
First Officer
Flight distance : 1272723 ft
United States
Offline

Looks lie that sucker just dropped like a rock!
2018-8-30
Use props
insular_au
lvl.2

Australia
Offline

I'll send all this info to DJI soon. Looking at the log I remember it going down a little but it was far too slow to be of any use and I couldn't understand why either. The app was responsive and I was getting a video feed and everything.

I had used the auto landing function before and I think it descends at the same time as it moves as well? I think I manually steered it as well the last time I used it (probably after cancelling the auto landing).

You can see from the log I tried to cancel the auto landing to take over but it refused to let me. Thanks for the input.
2018-8-30
Use props
Wachtberger
Captain
Flight distance : 261509 ft
Germany
Offline

insular_au Posted at 2018-8-30 04:19
I'll send all this info to DJI soon. Looking at the log I remember it going down a little but it was far too slow to be of any use and I couldn't understand why either. The app was responsive and I was getting a video feed and everything.

I had used the auto landing function before and I think it descends at the same time as it moves as well? I think I manually steered it as well the last time I used it (probably after cancelling the auto landing).

Yes I have seen that. To me it looks like a malfunction but only DJI will be able to confirm that.
2018-8-30
Use props
rwynant V1
Captain
Flight distance : 2005722 ft
Offline

This appears to be a dry lake bed?  Desert?

34% and you're 1400ft away,  and 1600ft AGL

Possible:  the RTH/Auto Land is fairly gentle.......you needed to travel 3000+ft to get home.......it is entirely possible you were caught in a thermal/updraft.

The gentle nature of the landing sequence could not negate the updraft........the spinning blades act like an umbrella in this scenario.....  JUST A THOUGHT

BTW,  this was not a loss of control,  it was total battery depletion.....I have never seen voltages that low before.  That little critter fought all the way till the end.....Sorry.

Randy
2018-8-30
Use props
OneDoesNotSimply
First Officer
Flight distance : 662644 ft
United States
Offline

Did you try hitting pause or going into Sport mode to cancel the auto land? I wonder if salt or sand or moisture got on the downward sensors and confused them into thinking they were near the ground. Just guessing here of course.
2018-8-30
Use props
CoreyB10
Captain
Flight distance : 204803 ft
  • >>>
United Kingdom
Offline

ghostrdr Posted at 2018-8-30 04:17
Looks lie that sucker just dropped like a rock!

Batteries certainly got to critical levels before it just died. Solid satellite lock till the end. Get it sent in.......
2018-8-30
Use props
CoreyB10
Captain
Flight distance : 204803 ft
  • >>>
United Kingdom
Offline

Just been looking at propagation and what happens to WiFi / radio signals. How reflective are the salt flats ? The reason I ask is that if the salt reflects the wifi in a a strange direction it can cause drop outs. It’s the same with water. Radio frequencies are improved however. Just a geographical idea without getting to technical or scientific. Hope you get it sorted.
2018-8-30
Use props
nixuspix
Captain
Flight distance : 2771453 ft
Latvia
Offline

Really sad story  and first time i see that strange behaviour, when control with the drone is not lost, but it refuses to follow issued commands.
I think it may be a warranty case by DJI. I am really sorry for such way out
2018-8-30
Use props
Alex Batalov
Captain
Flight distance : 4622680 ft

Spain
Offline

In this case when I would have seen that RTH is not descending, then I would have taken control,  put it in sports mode and try to descend myself.
If it was still not descending at the spot where it was, then I would have flown to a different place and try to descend there.
You were really high and the winds are unpredictable at that hight + at that level of altitude from the sea!
My guess is the wind, because when I lost my first spark, it also was at 200 something meters high and all of a sudden it flew away reaaaly fast,I pressed RTH but it wouldn’t descend, I cancelled and tried to descend myself but the winds were too strong and still 0 meters descend, it flew away even further until it got disconnected from the remote and bye bye forever sparky number 1
And by the way the wind at ground level was 0.

Fly safe everyone.
Alex.
2018-8-30
Use props
insular_au
lvl.2

Australia
Offline

Alex, It was already in sports mode. I was flying high and fast (for top down video footage) and it was the 2nd flight I made in that spot. The first was fine. When it said I had to return for low battery I just swiped thinking nothing of it because I had used it before and I thought it was an easy and nice feature to use instead of manually try to fly it back and possibly going in the wrong direction and having the battery die somewhere else.

In my post I mentioned I was on salt flats, yes it is higher altitude but I'm not aware of any restrictions or dangers above sea level (otherwise surely DJI would impose them in software). It wasn't windy and the only wind warning I got did not seem justified because sometimes I had high wind warning false positives and had no issues. When I received this wind warning it was well before I tried to bring it home.

and to make it clear, and it is clear from the log. I tried to cancel the automatic return to home and received 'failed to cancel landing' message. This brought a lot of fear in me because I couldn't control it when I wanted to and I was helpless. After the battery died out I heard the propellers fail and saw it spinning around on my phone. Wasn't long before it crashed about 10m from me HARD.

I suppose I could upload the video footage as well and you can see for yourself that it wasn't windy at all.
2018-8-30
Use props
Atlas_Aus
First Officer

Thailand
Offline

Hey mate,

Sorry to hear of your troubles. I am still very new to this and whilst I use RTH a lot sometimes it does not work well enough and I just use the controls manually to override it... I did not have to turn off or pause RTH for me to use manual control... Of none of that  helps you. On the plus side you have your drone, not lost in the ocean or similar. Hopefully DJI will come to the party.

Good luck.
2018-8-31
Use props
GDL
First Officer
Flight distance : 1498789 ft
Hong Kong
Offline

RTH is a safety feature only use when out of control. Normally you should landing manually not depending on the RTH. It’s more safety to land manually.
2018-8-31
Use props
BumblerBee
First Officer
Flight distance : 609816 ft
Norway
Offline

Looking at the logs:
1. It managed to do the Go Home part without problems with 27% power to spare when reaching the home point
2. The Auto Landing portion started exactly over the home point after the orientation adjustment.
3. It steadily hovers over the home point - te wind is not a factor here.
So far so good.
3. It's above the VPS limit and the VPS altiture is NA, so the white of the monochrome surface should not have confused it
4. It hovers over the same spot even when saying Auto Landing.
5. It throws worning "Warning__The remaining battery is only enough for RTH. Return home now." while actually in the Auto Landing phase
6. I see several "Failed to cancel landing. " warnings - did yo try to cancel manually? (Also happening at 5% and 6% battery)
7. At 0% it gives a warning "Critically Low Voltage Warning__Land as soon as possible, otherwise the battery will be damaged." but continues to hover in place while in Auto Landing mode.
8. Then comes "Video cache has stopped because there is not enough storage space. You can enable Auto Cache Clear or manually delete cache to get enough space."
9. Cells 3, then 2, then 1 start to fail, while it struggles to maintain its altitude.
10. "Critically Low Voltage Warning__Aircraft will be forced to land." when batteries provide only 8.9V. It still tries and fails to hold its altitude, slowly descending.

The above scenario looks like a SW bug!

Add to that anothe observation: At 8m 23.4s with 41% power it threw a warning: "Warning__The remaining battery is only enough for RTH. Return home now."


2018-8-31
Use props
GDL
First Officer
Flight distance : 1498789 ft
Hong Kong
Offline

Is that because the landing spot is not flat and save for landing? MA downward sensor will check the landing spot below. If it see the place has obstacles and not save for landing it will just hover on there and wait for instructions.
2018-8-31
Use props
JJBspark
Captain
Flight distance : 1176729 ft
Netherlands
Offline

BumblerBee Posted at 2018-8-31 06:22
Looking at the logs:
1. It managed to do the Go Home part without problems with 27% power to spare when reaching the home point
2. The Auto Landing portion started exactly over the home point after the orientation adjustment.

Hi,

The message at 8m 23.4s is OKE (i think), flying back home and land the drone takes time...see my chart and the lines crossing.

Puzzled here why this craft did not like to decend!?

cheers
JJB
analysis1.png
2018-8-31
Use props
JJBspark
Captain
Flight distance : 1176729 ft
Netherlands
Offline

GDL Posted at 2018-8-31 06:59
Is that because the landing spot is not flat and save for landing? MA downward sensor will check the landing spot below. If it see the place has obstacles and not save for landing it will just hover on there and wait for instructions.

Hi,

Don`t think a MA will check the landing spot flying at 498 meters high.

cheers
JJB

2018-8-31
Use props
DJIFlo2
lvl.4
Flight distance : 208140 ft
United States
Offline

I am very sorry for your lost!
Please keep us in the loop what DJI said after you sent it in.
2018-9-1
Use props
ghostrdr
First Officer
Flight distance : 1272723 ft
United States
Offline

Just as a matter of curiosity, did you have any type of landing extensions on your MA?
2018-9-1
Use props
droneberg
lvl.2
Flight distance : 155764 ft
Offline

My condolences. I lost my MA a few days ago. I know the feeling. ...
2018-9-1
Use props
HedgeTrimmer
Captain
United States
Offline

I obviously was looking up to see if I could try and catch it (or dodge it).

Regardless of cause and outcome.  Glad you did not try to catch it.  Can only imagine prop or arm hitting one in eye.
Currently MA replacements are readily available, replacement eyes are on long pre-order wait-list.

2018-9-1
Use props
HedgeTrimmer
Captain
United States
Offline

Were you able to recover any video from Mavic Air's second flight?
2018-9-1
Use props
insular_au
lvl.2

Australia
Offline

Hi all, sorry for the delay. I've just put in the support request via the email link. Hopefully I will be able to send it in soon. To answer questions that need answering:

HedgeTrimmer: All the video except one last file was in tact, and the last is corrupt but I will try and fix it with some repair tools. I had to at least move if it came for my head. I couldn't see it and therefore had no certainty where it would land. So fortunate that this did not happen with other people around. I have more of a respect for not flying in urban environments for this reason now. It could've killed someone...

ghostdr: no landing extensions. It was stock as I am new to it all.

BumblerBee: Yes I tried to cancel manually. To descend manually. It seemed like the right thing to try and do? As I couldn't cancel it I was helpless and just a spectator.
2018-9-3
Use props
insular_au
lvl.2

Australia
Offline

Quick update after confirmation of non-pilot error. They say they have shipped it back to me and provided a tracking number but it doesn't work in any courier service that I know of, and not in AusPost either.

Been like that for a few days now. Invalid tracking number. Anyone know how they ship it back to you? AusPost or someone else? It says express shipping so I think I should have received it by now as it is usually one day from Melbourne for me.

EDIT: update, tracking info now works.
Almost there!

The official resolution was: Under warranty, non-pilot-error. The left front motor arm is smashed or cracked.The gimbal axis' motor is misshapen.The propellers are worn.The battery cannot be charged. SN may change.Flight test will be performed after repair.
2018-9-18
Use props
insular_au
lvl.2

Australia
Offline

it shipped with firmware V00.02.0034

with all the fuss about the latest firmware being extremely buggy, should i upgrade?

also i wanted to buy dji care on it because i got a new replacement and newly activated drone but the thread was deleted when i asked about whether it is possible. anyone know why? admins?
2018-9-24
Use props
Advanced
You need to log in before you can reply Login | Register now

Credit Rules