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Line of sight versus "In sight"
1315 13 2016-10-30
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colonel0000
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Just curious, but I'm afraid I'll open a can of worms, but the typical regulations say you should have your drone withing sight: Must keep the aircraft in sight (visual line-of-sight)*


Now I see many folks remarking negatively when people are giving this hobby/sport/profession/etc. a bad name with irresponsible flying (flying in a city, over people, whatever).  However, I have to wonder, even if you are flying in "line of sight", there's no way you can see your aircraft out past several hundered yards/meters, right?  Much less, the Mavic totes a range of 4+ miles, advertised!  No way are you going to see it that far.  So, I guess my question is, what is truly responsible flying with an aircraft of these abilities?  


Hoping for a good discussion here...
2016-10-30
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sandgrownun
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You do see a lot of references to "line of sight" which to me means there are no obstacles between the pilot and the aircraft which is misleading and not the same as in sight. Certainly in the UK the law is very clear and the aircraft must be in sight. To quote the regulations:

"The person in charge of a small unmanned aircraft must maintain direct, unaided visual
contact with the aircraft sufficient to monitor its flight path in relation to other aircraft, persons,
vehicles, vessels and structures for the purpose of avoiding collisions."

So, certainly in the UK it is unlawful to fly unless you actually have the aircraft in sight.
I haven't got my Mavic yet so do not know but would expect that due to the small size the range of "in sight" will be obviously be less relative to larger aircraft such as the P4.

I think it would be useful for someone that has received their Mavic with good eyesight to report in this thread what the realistic range and height is where you can maintain visual contact with it.
2016-10-30
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Gray Volk
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sandgrownun Posted at 2016-10-30 06:24
You do see a lot of references to "line of sight" which to me means there are no obstacles between t ...

Another interesting things here are "must" and "unaided". Which means without, for example, binoculars... or glasses. So, do we have to take glasses off to comply? Does any sun cover, like big hat, counts as "aid"?
2016-10-30
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Jake Phantom 3
Second Officer
Flight distance : 2639747 ft
United States
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The FAA list it in their list of Safety Guidelines which are also the rules:

Safety Guidelines:
•Fly at or below 400 feet
•Keep your UAS within sight
•Never fly near other aircraft, especially near airports
•Never fly over groups of people
•Never fly over stadiums or sports events
•Never fly near emergency response efforts such as fires
•Never fly under the influence
•Be aware of airspace requirements
2016-10-30
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Logger
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Flight distance : 2883714 ft
Australia
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What about attaching a bike strobe or similar? Might increase visual range.
2016-10-30
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rick39
Second Officer
Flight distance : 164354 ft
United Kingdom
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I imagine this will preclude my second sight training correspondence course I signed up for with my online Shaman. I'll try and get my money back.

Second sight is a form of extrasensory perception, the supposed power to perceive things that are not present to the senses, whereby a person perceives information, in the form of a vision, about future events before they happen (precognition), or about things or events at remote locations (remote viewing).
2016-10-30
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sandgrownun
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Logger Posted at 2016-10-30 19:35
What about attaching a bike strobe or similar? Might increase visual range.

I was thinking of something similar. When I was in the Army (a long time ago) when going on patrol we used to be issued with a device called a "Firefly" which was a high powered strobe light about 1.5 x 3" in size. Its purpose was as an emergency beacon that could be seen by rescue helicopters from presumably miles away. Could be a good aftermarket product for those entrepreneurs amongst you.
2016-10-30
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sandgrownun
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Gray Volk Posted at 2016-10-30 19:04
Another interesting things here are "must" and "unaided". Which means without, for example, binocu ...

I took "unaided" to mean magnifying devices like binoculars (that reduce eyesight FOV)  but not glasses (that do not impact eyesight FOV).

We also have an exception in UK that allows you to increase the maximum flying height to 1000ft when flying by camera in FPV as long as you have a spotter watching the aircraft. I would be very interested to know in particular how high you can fly the Mavic before losing sight of it as this obviously adds a lot more flexibility to safe flying?
2016-10-30
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Gray Volk
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sandgrownun Posted at 2016-10-30 07:47
I took "unaided" to mean magnifying devices like binoculars (that reduce eyesight FOV)  but not gl ...

In USA it's up to 400ft, but, I think, it's from the highest point within some radius,.. where you can see it.. not sure.
2016-10-30
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leostark
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In Australia, CASA regulations are pretty similar to that of UK. 'Must' and 'without aids' are included.
2016-10-30
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Peel
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The FAA (US) Part 107  regulations state:
§107.31   Visual line of sight aircraft operation.
(a) With vision that is unaided by any device other than corrective lenses, the remote pilot in command, the visual observer (if one is used), and the person manipulating the flight control of the small unmanned aircraft system must be able to see the unmanned aircraft throughout the entire flight in order to:

(1) Know the unmanned aircraft's location;

(2) Determine the unmanned aircraft's attitude, altitude, and direction of flight;

(3) Observe the airspace for other air traffic or hazards; and

(4) Determine that the unmanned aircraft does not endanger the life or property of another.

(b) Throughout the entire flight of the small unmanned aircraft, the ability described in paragraph (a) of this section must be exercised by either:

(1) The remote pilot in command and the person manipulating the flight controls of the small unmanned aircraft system; or

(2) A visual observer.
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colonel0000
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Right, so basically you have to be able to see the aircraft at all times.  But, how far is that really with something the size of a Mavic in open terrain?  Obviously, flying a mile away is out of sight isn't it?  Wouldn't that be irresponsible flying?  I guess I just kind of see some hypocrisy in comments on this forum when someone is chastised for flying in a city yet people clearly violate the FAA regulations all the time and this is accepted as a norm.
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Gray Volk
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colonel0000 Posted at 2016-10-31 02:09
Right, so basically you have to be able to see the aircraft at all times.  But, how far is that real ...

it's difficult to "observe" "and direction of flight" even at 50 meters. most humans don't have this good sense of depth. quad can fly in any direction, not only forward.
2016-10-30
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ngvuanh
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I would like to add that Mavic is black so it would have better contrast when it's up in the sky than Phantoms. When I got my P4 in the sky, I barely see it sometimes but I can hear its propellers spinning.
2016-10-31
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