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Fly from Palo Alto to San Francisco via 'droneports'
2129 19 2014-10-1
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aseidman
lvl.2

United States
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What's this all about?
I want to fly Phantoms from Palo Alto to San Francisco by creating a set of 'droneports'  (aka "Hives") where the Phantom can land, recharge, and then head back on it's way.

So, how would these droneports (aka "Hives") work?

1) A "Hive" is an open spot i.e. no large trees around the area where the Phantom can safely land.
2) Each "Hive" would have  an owner (or "queen") familiar with drones.  Able to recharge them and set them back on their way to their next "Hive"
3) "Hive" coordinates and photos of the landing spot would be published and available to all members in the network so you know exactly where your landing and feel comfortably flying your Phantom to the location.

Why?
Planes need airports, cars need gas stations and rest-stops, and so drones need "hives" in order for them to fly longer distance, recharge, and ultimately do more useful things like pick up that thing you left at your friends house without travelling back 30 minutes.

Ultimately there will be 100,000+ "hives" such that a Phantom could fly between San Francisco and New York City.

How many Drone "Hives" do we need?
Between San Francisco and Palo Alto we'll need about 40 "hives" to begin with.  As battery life improves and our flight paths become more efficient overtime we can reduce that.

How to get involved?

If you live in the San Francisco Bay Area and would like to particpate please let me know by jumping onto the thread or send me an email aseidman@gmail.com







2014-10-1
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dobie123
lvl.1

Australia
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Brilliant idea.. too bad I live in Aus, but I was over your way just two weeks ago and was dreaming about flying my drones around some of the great locations I spotted, Good luck
2014-10-2
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aseidman
lvl.2

United States
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Even if you are not from the San Francisco and want to get involved let me know!
2014-10-2
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T J Gilbert
Second Officer
Flight distance : 74659 ft
United States
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I am really not in favor of extreme BVR flying considering the current FAA issues.
So, considering what's possible with the technology, I don't mean to rain on your parade, but...
Palo Alto to San Francisco is ~35 miles.
Assuming you plan to fly from hive to hive using FPV, how do you plan to deal with the P2V+'s 800m range and the P2's 1000m range for RC?
And video may drop sooner than that...

If you convert the entire RC flight control system (P2) over to something like DragonLink, you'll be able to get ~15 miles from your Tx.
What do you plan to do about the range of the VTx?
A 1000mW 1.2 Ghz system  (about the most powerful available to the average citizen) will get you ~3 miles from your VRx.

So, seriously, isn't this just a fantasy?
2014-10-2
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stryjek
lvl.4
United Kingdom
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its called 4G + WIFI
2014-10-2
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aseidman
lvl.2

United States
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Most good things start off as a fantasy

Using the DJI 2.4 controller with TP-Link 8dBi antenna mod I've gotten my Phantom to fly for about 3 miles, and others have taken their Phantoms even further.

Assuming you fly autonomously using waypoints why not just make the last waypoint on one leg of the flight the coordinates for a hive, so that it lands at the hive?

There is an issue a current issue with this approach where the Ground Station app (artificially) restricts your range to a set radius around your home position, so we won't be able to get the full 3 miles one usually can.   This is where some good software hacking needs to happen:-)   

The technology does exist for this to happen it just has not been simplified to the point where anybody can do easily say "send my drone to this hive via these hives" and that's the part we intend to address.

2014-10-2
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T J Gilbert
Second Officer
Flight distance : 74659 ft
United States
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Well, good luck with it anyway!
Dreams do become reality many times, and maybe yours will...
2014-10-3
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aseidman
lvl.2

United States
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Thanks TJ.  Let me know if you want to help out!
2014-10-3
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stryjek
lvl.4
United Kingdom
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its a good idea and to do now , but i would rather start from building a drone with more flexible fly controller like  Pickhawk   you have flexibility there to program your dron for more custom tasks  ,
2014-10-3
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aseidman
lvl.2

United States
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stryjek Posted at 2014-10-4 12:33
its a good idea and to do now , but i would rather start from building a drone with more flexible fl ...

I think this needs this to be independent of any specific type of drone.  Anybody with a drone could land / recharge at the hive.  If you are car you can stop at basically any gas station and get gas so you can make it from SF to LA.    The same should be true for drones -- if you need to deliver something beyond it's current range of 3 to 5 miles this should be possible.
2014-10-6
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stryjek
lvl.4
United Kingdom
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as i previously mentioned , dji is not a way, try pickhawk controller, you will be able to do program it to the way you are thinking
2014-10-6
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aseidman
lvl.2

United States
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stryjek Posted at 2014-10-7 04:46
as i previously mentioned , dji is not a way, try pickhawk controller, you will be able to do progra ...

What features is the Phantom missing?
2014-10-6
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stryjek
lvl.4
United Kingdom
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phantom is missing an option to be able to install the sonar sensors for example to bring more accuracy for the landing to gps location .
just gps is not accurate enough ,  also its missing a open source programming feature so you can basically do whatever you wannt with the drone . How with NAZA you wannt to setup custom drone network or with any other dji controller ?
2014-10-7
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stryjek
lvl.4
United Kingdom
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dji does great products for users who wannt to plug and fly . but its not a device for custom tasks .  if you compare linux with ios system from apple .
2014-10-7
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josephbobowicz
Second Officer

United Kingdom
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Ambitious project, best of luck in accomplishing your goal.
2014-10-8
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DJI-CS
Administrator

China
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Very brilliant idea!!! Hope you can make it possible!!!
2014-10-9
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scott_barton
lvl.2

United States
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This could be possible to get to the first hive via GPS way point, but after that how would you tell it where to go next since you are no longer in range?  
http://www.skydrone.aero has a 4G FPV for unlimited FPV distance.  Need a 4G controller and then it would be possible.  

-Scott
2014-10-13
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aseidman
lvl.2

United States
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Good question. Couple of options.

Yes, a 4G controller would solve this problem as well.

The person who looks after the Hive could do it as well as long as they had the full flight mission and the right apps / configuration on their side.


2014-10-13
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mixstreme
lvl.4

United Kingdom
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aseidman@gmail. Posted at 2014-10-14 01:49
Good question. Couple of options.

Yes, a 4G controller would solve this problem as well.

Well induction charging could be an option!
2014-10-25
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djiuser_Y4s7aS2
lvl.1

India
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This might be possible only over 4G LTE maybe. My friend tried doing this and he succeeds with it.
He is using Flybase Cloud, its new in the market.
I tried understanding the concept here: https://blogs.flytbase.com/internet-of-drones/.
What I understand is they provide Real-time access and control over 4G/LTE.
https://flytbase.com/cloud/
2017-8-1
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