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KP index
1093 12 2018-8-26
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GDL
First Officer
Flight distance : 1498789 ft
Hong Kong
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Not sure how many people here aware the KP index will affect drone control. When KP index over 5 the radio and GPS signal can be affected and cause drone out of control. Many apps for drone pilots provide KP index figure.

I normally won’t fly when KP index over 4. Today the KP is 6 when I go out and change to 7 later. But I just charged all 4 batteries for MA and won’t be able to fly next week. I don’t want to discharge all batteries and decided to fly carefully. I fly slow and close with constant monitoring the drone behaviour. The control and video signal is ok up to 200 meters. But I noticed MA sometimes unable to fix the position. It drifts away when hover on a spot and unable break when I released the control stick. If I don’t watch it carefully and take correct action it can fly away or crash with something. MA got 11-14 satellites during the flight. So must be the GPS signal get affected and unable to fix the position accurately.

Lesson learn better not fly when KP index is 5 or over. If you need to fly must be very careful and don’t go far. Keep your eyes on the drone all time for safety.
2018-8-26
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msinger
Captain
Flight distance : 183694 ft
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United States
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It would be interesting to see the "it drifts away when hover on a spot and unable break when I released the control stick" part of your flight log. If you'd like to share it, please upload it here and post the link back here.
2018-8-26
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Alex Batalov
Captain
Flight distance : 4622680 ft

Spain
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I don’t fly if the kp index is at or higher than 4!

Safe flying.
Alex.
2018-8-26
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Alex Batalov
Captain
Flight distance : 4622680 ft

Spain
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Well actually I think 4 is still ok, 5 and higher the kp index is not ok to fly though.
2018-8-26
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rwynant V1
Captain
Flight distance : 2005722 ft
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The KP is related to solar activity, and the effect on the GPS coming from the satellites.

No GPS = Drift

No GPS while braking = no braking because no signal to stop at....it's trying to stop in a GPS column.....it's not there with no GPS.

Randy
2018-8-26
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GDL
First Officer
Flight distance : 1498789 ft
Singapore
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I can see it suddenly moving from one position to another and stop without any stick command. The drift is not too bad. It just moved few meters away. However, if not in open space and watch carefully it can crash to something around. If controller disconnected it will be problem to use RTH. So I won’t fly again when KP index over 4.
2018-8-26
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GDL
First Officer
Flight distance : 1498789 ft
United States
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The major problem is aircraft still locked on GPS mode. You can see it got over 11 satellites and with good GPS signal. So you won’t aware it can’t position accurately. If not careful or fly too far it’s easy to lose the aircraft.

Check KP index before flight for safety!
2018-8-26
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GDL
First Officer
Flight distance : 1498789 ft
Singapore
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I hear some people’s report their drone has control or position issues on last Saturday and Sunday during high KP index period. If anyone has same experience can you share with us?
2018-8-27
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Alan James
lvl.2
Flight distance : 146821 ft
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No offense to anyone here, but this is one very big reason why I preach that before flying GPS camera drones, one should first learn how to fly RC “the hard way.”   Once you have the skills to fly RC airplanes and other “drones” that don’t use GPS or even self-leveling, you will not care about K index quite so much.  (Obviously it still matters for getting an accurate home point and such.)  It’s still a bit surprising when it starts to drift and you aren’t expecting it, but it won’t induce panic like it does for many.   This is also why I really dislike that that Mavic does not have the 3rd position on the flight mode switch to quickly disable the GPS hold behavior like the Phantom does.  (On the Phantom you can turn off GPS hold all together, so it will only self-level and altitude hold.)
K index below 5 or 6 is really no big deal.  It’s good to be aware if it goes higher, so you are expecting drift and know not to rely too much on autonomous modes such as active track.  Above 8 or 9 I think is really when things get really rough, and you probably don’t want to be flying the Mavic at all since you can’t turn off the GPS behavior to my knowledge.

...so I guess what I’m saying is, “aren’t I cool, I can fly without GPS which doesn’t mean a damn thing on the Mavic anyways because you can’t turn off GPS hold.”   I’ll go back to my cave, now.  

2018-8-27
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GDL
First Officer
Flight distance : 1498789 ft
Hong Kong
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I do expected some impact when KP index is 7 so not s big problem for me. Just seeing it happen make me worrying about many hobbies don't know about KP index and face dangerous. I hard people cash their done on last weekend because lost control.

As high KP index caused dangerous to drone fly DJI should show warning on the Go screen when KP index over 6.
2018-8-28
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Alex Batalov
Captain
Flight distance : 4622680 ft

Spain
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I’m using UAV Forecast app, I check it before every flight. It has a lot of very useful information, including the current kp index where you are flying.

Fly safe everyone.
Alex.
2018-8-28
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LIVNXXL
Second Officer
Flight distance : 1507510 ft
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United States
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Alan James Posted at 2018-8-27 23:37
No offense to anyone here, but this is one very big reason why I preach that before flying GPS camera drones, one should first learn how to fly RC “the hard way.”   Once you have the skills to fly RC airplanes and other “drones” that don’t use GPS or even self-leveling, you will not care about K index quite so much.  (Obviously it still matters for getting an accurate home point and such.)  It’s still a bit surprising when it starts to drift and you aren’t expecting it, but it won’t induce panic like it does for many.   This is also why I really dislike that that Mavic does not have the 3rd position on the flight mode switch to quickly disable the GPS hold behavior like the Phantom does.  (On the Phantom you can turn off GPS hold all together, so it will only self-level and altitude hold.)
K index below 5 or 6 is really no big deal.  It’s good to be aware if it goes higher, so you are expecting drift and know not to rely too much on autonomous modes such as active track.  Above 8 or 9 I think is really when things get really rough, and you probably don’t want to be flying the Mavic at all since you can’t turn off the GPS behavior to my knowledge.

!00% agree with you. If you are going to fly a drone you should be able to do it without having to rely on "Safety Features".
2018-8-28
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DJI Tony
Super Moderator

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Hi, Thanks for sharing your informative story. Please let us know if you have other concerns. Thank you for the support.
2018-9-4
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