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Small Item Transport Question
823 10 2016-12-2
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millerstone
lvl.1
United States
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Hi guys,

I'll start by saying I'm a complete drone novice. I've recently come across an issue at work that I think a drone would fix.

I'm a polymer chemist making a tricky precursor material. To nail the correct molecular weight, samples must be run on an NMR throughout the reaction. NMR tubes are tiny (~2g), and the samples including solvent weigh no more than a gram. I figure that a 3 gram load is nothing to an Inspire 2.

Here's where the drone comes in. My lab is about 3 miles as the crow flies from our NMR. We actually have a clear line of sight all the way up to the NMR facility. Do you guys think that it's feasible to use an Inspire 2 to transport samples quickly? Like I said, I am a novice when it comes to nice drones. I assume the first person camera would be fine, I don't think I'd need to attach something fancier. This would only increase battery life, correct?

I'm proficient at flying micro drones. I have a few I fly around my living room no problems, and can even fly them around outside with a bit of wind. How different is flying an Inspire? I'd assume very different, but it couldn't be harder than fighting wind with a tiny drone with no stabilization.

What am I missing? Please pick holes in this idea. I'd hate to get a $3K drone only to find out that it doesn't fit my application. That said, it would be awesome to have my work buy me an Inspire 2 which I could then use to film other things inbetween syntheses. I realize I'd have to get another camera, unless for some reason an X5R would benefit transport as well.

Thanks for reading!

2016-12-2
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Aeromirage
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Flight distance : 1778045 ft
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United States
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Sounds to me like you are trying to get the company to buy you a toy.
Not very feasible at all.
2016-12-2
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dotfiles
lvl.4

United States
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Aeromirage Posted at 2016-12-2 20:56
Sounds to me like you are trying to get the company to buy you a toy.
Not very feasible at all.

Yeah you could transport a small sample as you say on top of a Phantom, or even a Mavic...
2016-12-2
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Donnie
Captain
Flight distance : 3636782 ft
United States
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Do you really need to get them there that fast ?  If so and you have clear line of sight - go for it .  I would like to see you have an experienced pilot help you , maybe you can find one .
DJI is the only way to go - they have the best - most reliable on the market and customer service is improving .  there are just a lot of little things that you only get with time and experience flying RC craft.  I thought about the Phantom line but think the Inspire would be the fastest most stable platform out there .

I think in the NEAR future with 4g coming ( 4g is what cell phones use to communicate , it will eliminate most lag  and overcome the line of sight ) ( Inspire 2 )  that this will be a novel way of making quick deliveries , think of like an Epi pen that must get across town in heavy traffic , send the dorne with the GPS co-ordinates and another receiver at the point of delivery guiding in for landing or just a drop point .  This technology is coming !  
Flying is not that hard when you have GPS BUT when you flying manually it is much more challenging, I would use a flight simulator out there for Drones ( quads )

I think you have an interesting idea but Not sure if it is critical for what you want to do .  You can fly me to your facility and I will be happy to do some DD to help you out


****Some laws will need to change for the 4G ( to get out of line of sight flying )  but the technology is coming .

donnie

2016-12-3
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fans9c5e195f
lvl.2
United States
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I think the OP was looking for technical drone ops criticism of his plan, not moralistic or debate on whether it is necessary.

It is clearly feasible. Ground transport would be less risky. Definitely need experience flying first.
2016-12-3
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MrSilicon
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Flight distance : 6693586 ft
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If it's 3 grams then the I2 is overkill.

Get a phantom or mavic.

Look into getting a 3rd party mission planning app and simply set a landing point. That way it would all be automated, in theory.

I'm just thinking out loud, I've never tried it but I don't see why it wouldn't work.

OR!!!

Get some homing pideons man!


2016-12-4
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Donnie
Captain
Flight distance : 3636782 ft
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MrSilicon Posted at 2016-12-4 02:15
If it's 3 grams then the I2 is overkill.

Get a phantom or mavic.

I thought about that also , I Just thought the Inspire may have a bit more authority in the wind and what not , and with the Inspire 2 and 4g this idea he has could become commonplace .  Maybe they could start with the Phantom 4 and go from there, make sure the idea is worth it .  
Can you imagine with 4g, takoffs and landings at distance for samll deliveries will be amazing . Going to open up a lot of regulation though.  The technology is just around the corner to make this reliable.....I cant wait , I have dreamed of this stuff  since I was a lad !



donnie
2016-12-4
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Rinzler
lvl.4

United States
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I hear this and think they are sending drugs lol
2016-12-5
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millerstone
lvl.1
United States
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Thanks for all the advice!

I picked the Inspire because I thought it would be the most stable drone out of the bunch. I'm not just trying to con a toy out of the company, the suggestion to get a drone was made by the CEO himself. Also, definitely not shipping drugs, just to clarify.

You've all given me some things to think about. Thanks again!
2016-12-6
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DJI-Ken
DJI team
Flight distance : 1515312 ft
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millerstone Posted at 2016-12-7 05:06
Thanks for all the advice!

I picked the Inspire because I thought it would be the most stable drone out of the bunch. I'm not just trying to con a toy out of the company, the suggestion to get a drone was made by the CEO himself. Also, definitely not shipping drugs, just to clarify.

The Inspire2 is made for cameras and obtaining epic videos/photos with it's cameras (whichever camera you buy for it). As the others suggested, I would just use a Mavic or P4.
You said it's 3 miles away, the range of the new DJI aircraft is more than that BUT in the perfect conditions. With that kind of equipment around, you would have to see if that distance can be obtained.
Probably best to hire someone for a test flight to see if that distance can easily be reached. If so then decide which DJI aircraft will work. If that range is not easily reached then you could get a HAM license and use a DragonLink or other brand 433mhz setup and build a DJI 450 or 550.
2016-12-6
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Farnk666
Captain
Flight distance : 1711394 ft
Australia
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Hey OP,

Suggest that you do some research into the trials and projects being undertaken by some of the more progressive logistics companies in UAV delivery such as DHL.
Despite this being a DJI forum, remember that the UAV world doesn't begin and end with our friends from Shenzhen.

DJI has experience in aerial imagery and recreational UAV use cases, but not a lot of experience in logistics and Industrial applications.
If you have an enthusiastic CEO and budget available, there are no issues in finding a platform that will do this. Google names such as Microdrones MD4-1000, Altura Zenith, Ascending Technologies. Plenty more out there.
It's just that the gear will cost more and won't come from your local hobby shop.
2016-12-7
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