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Flight Aborted (probably lost) in Woods. Battery died at 44%
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2579 51 2018-3-23
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
United States
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I was 600 feet from my house, 7 minutes into flight, flying straight, and then suddenly my battery went from 44% to 0% and started to descend.  I lost signal in the woods when it was maybe 6 or 7 feet in the air.  I don't know what happened to it after that.  I started the flight on full 100% battery.  Here is my flight log:  http://app.airdata.com/main?share=dFLeqK

I've sent an email to DJI, but I know that their USA customer service chat/phone help doesn't open for another 2.5 days since it's the weekend.  Help!!!

2018-3-23
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
United States
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Phantom Help Log
2018-3-23
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HedgeTrimmer
Captain
United States
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If the flight record is accurate, you should be able to find drone.  It is just off highway where there is short dirt path, and appears to be not to far from fence line.
2018-3-23
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
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It got too dark when I was able to search, as the sun was setting when it went down (7:20 PM).

I will try again in the morning when there is sun out. The last of the video feed was it trying to avoid the fence upon auto-descending (which I’m not sure why it wastes battery at 0% for something like that), and the video cut off before it landed, assuming it did land right there.

It’s a very woody and thorny area. Very dangerous for this to happen around freeway traffic!

I replied to DJI support email and sent them, as requested, all of my flight records and the relevant video cache files through Google Drive.
2018-3-23
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HedgeTrimmer
Captain
United States
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Need some expert help with flight log.  When I looked at flight log, it appeared as if drone was having trouble with WiFi connection.
2018-3-23
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
United States
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The WiFi issue was upon auto descent after the critical battery warning. I assume it had the WiFi issue because it was too low to the ground because it was landing. It wasn’t far from the home point at all, distance wise:
2018-3-23
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Simmo1
First Officer
Flight distance : 1624 ft
Australia
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I wonder what happened to the 40 seconds between u and v?? It does show the battery just dropping to 0, why didnt it just fall like a rock?
2018-3-23
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HedgeTrimmer
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United States
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fans5f84e502 Posted at 2018-3-23 19:10
It got too dark when I was able to search, as the sun was setting when it went down (7:20 PM).

I will try again in the morning when there is sun out. The last of the video feed was it trying to avoid the fence upon auto-descending (which I’m not sure why it wastes battery at 0% for something like that), and the video cut off before it landed, assuming it did land right there.

"It’s a very woody and thorny area."

Thick pants, heavy gloves, patience, and a machete.
And pray drone was really at 6 to 8 feet, and isn't stuck at top of tree.

Handheld GPS would be helpful too: 39.20443576, -76.62936021
Measuring from middle of dirt trail, starting from edge of pavement, drone appears to be 175-feet away.
Measuring down fence line, starting from edge of pavement, drone appears to be 150-feet away.
2018-3-23
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DJI Susan
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Sorry for your loss. Have you tried to use the feature of Find My Drone? To see whether there is any luck. Also, the support will check and help you create a case in the working time. If you need any further assistance, feel free to contact us with your case number, we'll be here for help.
2018-3-23
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MaikR
Second Officer
Flight distance : 235223 ft
Netherlands
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Hmmm weird. Thuis really looks like an issue. Hope you’ll find the drone.
2018-3-23
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Keule
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Flight distance : 3733015 ft
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It looks to me that the smart battery electronics messed up.
All 3 cells showed normal battery voltages relative to the 44% before the incident (3.67v, 3.68v, 3.67v)
For no reason to me, smart.battery dropped to zero %.
Short after the drop, all 3 cells recovered a little bit (up to 3.8v, 3.79v, 3.79v) but smart.battery still remained at 0%
After that, the flight controller decided to land the aircraft due to critical battery.


Drop 44% to 0%

Drop 44% to 0%
2018-3-23
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Wachtberger
Captain
Flight distance : 261509 ft
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Very strange, also that low battery warnings were issued very early into the flight with percentage above 60%. Had you done the firmware update already and had you done it also on all batteries?
Very sorry for your incident and hope you'll find it today.
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
United States
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Updated the firmware before that flight. Took about five minutes and manually restarted my drone upon completion of installation (as instructed).
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
United States
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I tried “Find My Drone” last night when it was missing for 1 to 2 hours but the buttons to ring or flash the lights were greyed out. Just took a screenshot for you to see.
B324FD4D-5233-49ED-8B9E-DC874DE12C66.png
2018-3-24
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nixuspix
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Not all bugs are ironed out yet for sure in Mavic Air
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
United States
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My DJI Customer Service Case ID is CAS-1597774-G1M0Z5
2018-3-24
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hallmark007
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fans5f84e502 Posted at 2018-3-24 02:42
My DJI Customer Service Case ID is CAS-1597774-G1M0Z5


It’s a tough break looking at your log no need to go picking through it, battery should not have behaved like it did, this has nothing to do with you . So I’m hopeful you will get reimbursed with a Mavic Air .

Just one thing I would ask had you updated new firmware on your battery , or was this flight before new FW update..

Edit: just seen post above where you updated..
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
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Flight distance : 153209 ft
United States
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Hey everyone, thank you for your help. I found it this morning! It was on the south side of the fence a couple feet away from the fence among some tall and very thorny bushes. It was much easier and safer to look in the daytime, compared to wading in the dark last night with a weak flashlight. It didn’t go far (if any distance at all) after the last video or GPS signal, which had it pointing south away from the fence, so it must have just hit the bushes at 5-7 feet and fallen softly. Now I have it folded and in a box of rice since it stayed out overnight. It was outside for 12 hours between 25 and 45 degrees F. I will update customer service. Let me know what else I should do, thanks!
2018-3-24
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Rawsome
First Officer
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Glad you found it, hopefully DJI can make sense of this and find a fix for this bug. Luckily you were over land and not water or some place recovery would have been impossible.
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
United States
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Thanks, I am also glad it didn’t hit the freeway. I did the best I could to steer it, while it was “auto-descending.” Not sure if anything I did helped it avoid the freeway but I will live with the results of landing in the dry woods.
2018-3-24
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hallmark007
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fans5f84e502 Posted at 2018-3-24 04:06
Hey everyone, thank you for your help. I found it this morning! It was on the south side of the fence a couple feet away from the fence among some tall and very thorny bushes. It was much easier and safer to look in the daytime, compared to wading in the dark last night with a weak flashlight. It didn’t go far (if any distance at all) after the last video or GPS signal, which had it pointing south away from the fence, so it must have just hit the bushes at 5-7 feet and fallen softly. Now I have it folded and in a box of rice since it stayed out overnight. It was outside for 12 hours between 25 and 45 degrees F. I will update customer service. Let me know what else I should do, thanks!

Good job, hopefully everything will be ok and you can find ou what went wrong with battery.

Good luck..
2018-3-24
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LoSBoL
First Officer
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Netherlands
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-3-24 03:47
It’s a tough break looking at your log no need to go picking through it, battery should not have behaved like it did, this has nothing to do with you . So I’m hopeful you will get reimbursed with a Mavic Air .

Just one thing I would ask had you updated new firmware on your battery , or was this flight before new FW update..

"Just one thing I would ask had you updated new firmware on your battery , or was this flight before new FW update.."

  That's a very good question! Haven't had the change to update, but I think I'll refrain from updating for now.
2018-3-24
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hallmark007
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LoSBoL Posted at 2018-3-24 04:23
"Just one thing I would ask had you updated new firmware on your battery , or was this flight before new FW update.."

  That's a very good question! Haven't had the change to update, but I think I'll refrain from updating for now.

I have updated, tried three batteries every thing was fine ran them down to 20%, two more to test.
2018-3-24
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LoSBoL
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hallmark007 Posted at 2018-3-24 04:26
I have updated, tried three batteries every thing was fine ran them down to 20%, two more to test.

I saw you've shared your 'real world' experience about the flight time, which was comforting to hear, even made me decide to update eventhough there are some mixed messages. I haven't come around to doing so. But with a few sudden rise in 'falling out of the sky due to battery failure' topics I can hold on a little longer.
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
lvl.1
Flight distance : 153209 ft
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Are there more battery failures out there due to the firmware update?
2018-3-24
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PedalingDuo
Second Officer
Flight distance : 31896 ft
United States
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I noticed from your map that you were very close to some High Power electrical  transmission lines when the battery dropped to zero.  Could that have had something to do with this abnormality?

Strong Electromagnetic Interference can do strange things to electronics.  
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
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Flight distance : 153209 ft
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I’ve flown over the lines many times. It may cause signal interference and restrict my distance along with it being a residential neighborhood, but I’m not sure why they would kill the battery at 44% seven minutes into flight.
2018-3-24
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Keule
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fans5f84e502 Posted at 2018-3-24 05:07
Are there more battery failures out there due to the firmware update?

Maybe ... look here: https://forum.dji.com/forum.php? ... D534%26typeid%3D534
2018-3-24
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PedalingDuo
Second Officer
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fans5f84e502 Posted at 2018-3-24 05:28
I’ve flown over the lines many times. It may cause signal interference and restrict my distance along with it being a residential neighborhood, but I’m not sure why they would kill the battery at 44% seven minutes into flight.

Just an observation.
2018-3-24
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Entropia666
lvl.4
Flight distance : 249088 ft
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It's quite normal for a lithium battery cell to go down to 3.6V under load, the question is why is the low battery warning triggered? To me it looks like a bug...
Edit: Just properly read the comment above the plot, same conclusions here sorry for the repetition
2018-3-24
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KREMi
Captain
Poland
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sorry, but it was not a interference problem. but a faulty battery!
IMO get a warranty claim - logs show, that batt died from 40>0% instant! and it's a pretty dangerous situation. what if instead of going auto-land drone will shutdown midflight? what dmg/injury would it made?

2018-3-24
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mlamb
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Flight distance : 140190 ft
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I find this post scary, because I live close to the OP and drive on that same stretch of I-895.  A headline of drone causes crash on 895 isn't going to help the public opinion of drones in my area, in fact will probably make it harder to fly here.  Just because you can doesn't mean you should.  Are you even outside of the 5 mile NFZ around BWI?
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
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Flight distance : 153209 ft
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I’m within the 5 mile zone if BWI. It shows up as yellow on DJI GO, and it just warns me to fly with caution. Which I believed I was flying with caution and well below 400 feet. Being inside the 5 mile zone is not an excuse for the battery to go haywire. Also, Southwest Area Park RC Airfield straddles the border of the 5 mile zone, too.
2018-3-24
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mlamb
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If you cause an incident in an area where you shouldn't even be flying, who do you think the authorities will go after?  DJI, or you?
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
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Flight distance : 153209 ft
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It happened again today with a different fully charged battery on my second flight (first flight was a 30 sec takeoff and landing). Battery died at 59%. I was over a river, flew a mile to the other side, then turned around and a half mile out (5 minutes into flight) the critical battery warning showed up and it auto landed. Of course my heart dropped along with the drone’s altitude as I knew it would be a goner. But it started to hover just a few feet high over the water (like it did last night except I lost signal last night and there were tall bushes around). So I just throttled up and it flew the entire half mile back to shore at 0% waiting to land, and I landed it once it got onto shore. There seems to be a serious problem now that this has happened twice. Here is that scary flight log.
2018-3-24
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mlamb
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You recently updated the firmware, right?  Keep your current firmware, try taking it off and just letting it hover 5 or 6 ft above your takeoff point, see if you can reproduce the issue like that.  If you can, then roll back to the previous firmware and repeat the test.
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
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Flight distance : 153209 ft
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Yes the firmware was updated. And before I fly the DJI GO menu pops up when I first connect to the drone and at the top of the screen it says he firmware is the latest version. I’ll do a battery test with my remaining batteries, indoors in the safety of my home this time lol
2018-3-24
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mlamb
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Do it outside if you can, you will likely not be in GPS mode if you fly indoors, which could change the outcome.  Just fly it outside, hovering it just a few feet above the ground.  That way if it does happen again, it will land close to you in a safe place, and you won't have to go hunting for it.  And you will have your AC to send back to DJI, if needed.
2018-3-24
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DJT_MVSP
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Sounds like the communication between the smart battery and flight controller was disrupted for whatever reason.
The percentage is calculated on the battery itself and is normally sent to the AC through the terminals. When the flight controller doesn't receive any signal about the battery percentage, it would be treated as 0%
2018-3-24
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fans5f84e502
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Flight distance : 153209 ft
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Why do you think it happened twice and why didn’t it cancel the auto-land when it realized it had enough power to hover and fly forward at the minimum altitude?
2018-3-24
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