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  • Text
  • Multirotor
  • Aircraft
  • Drone
  • Transmitter
  • Controller
  • Controls
  • Pilots
  • Receiver
  • Modes
  • Orientation
  • Droneschoolopt


FLIGHT BASICS FLIGHT MODES AND INTELLIGENT ORIENTATION CONTROL EXPLAINED BY JOHN REID ILLUSTRATIONS BY TABLETINFOGRAPHICS.COM Multirotor aircraft are an excellent platform for aerial photography and video. They are very easy to fly and have very few moving parts. They also don’t produce much vibration and can hover in one exact point for as long as needed. While these aircraft are easy to fly, there are different flight modes that make it a little easier on the pilot. Understanding how and when to use these modes will make flying and getting a good shot almost a sure thing. Let’s take a closer look at flight modes and when and how to use them. In manual mode, the drone will travel in the direction that the stick is pushed (in this case to the right) and it is possible to flip the drone completely over. When in manual mode, the drone will travel in the direction the stick was pushed even after the stick is released. The pilot will need to apply opposite stick to level out the drone. RIGHT TRANSMITTER STICK CONTROL Push RIGHT TRANSMITTER STICK CONTROL Release FLIGHT MODES Many newer rotordrones will have at least three different flight modes: a GPS attitude flying hold mode, an attitude flying hold mode, and a manual flying mode. Each of these modes will exert more or less stability on the drone while flying. When to use them will depend on your flying skills and circumstance. The mode that has the least amount of stability is manual mode. Manual Mode In this mode, the drone will go where you control it and will require you to control it every step of the way. This is the mode to use if you want to do aerobatics with your multirotor because there will be no attitude/angle limitations and no vertical velocity locking, which means you can flip the drone around into any angle. You can’t take your hands off of the sticks in this mode and it will also require all of the corrections during flight to come from the pilot. There will be no assistance from the controller board. Again, this is the perfect mode for performance flying, aerobatics, and any type of flying that demands precise control for the pilot, such as flying obstacle courses in competition or performing loops and rolls. The downside is that the aircraft will not self-correct when the pilot lets go of the sticks. Any angle or attitude you put the drone into will require you to apply the appropriate stick movement in order to pull the aircraft out of the angle or attitude. 18

When in attitude mode, pushing the stick to the right will start the drone moving to the right. In some systems it will not be possible to bank the drone more than 45°. When the stick is released, the aircraft will level out but continue drifting in that direction for a some distance. Slight corrective stick movement will be needed to stop the aircraft. RIGHT TRANSMITTER STICK CONTROL Push RIGHT TRANSMITTER STICK CONTROL Release Attitude Holding Mode This mode allows the flight controller to use gyro stabilization to keep the attitude of the multirotor level. This means that when you release the sticks and return to center stick, the multirotor will try to level out. However, as it levels out, it will continue to move in the direction that it was flying before the release of the control sticks. In order to stop that momentum, the pilot will have to add corrective stick movements to bring the multirotor to a stop and hover. When flying the multirotor in a hover, the pilot will have to add corrective stick movements to keep the aircraft still and in one position. Many systems will not allow the multirotor to turn more than a 45-degree angle in this mode. In the wind, the quadcopter will still tend to move in the direction the wind is blowing. The pilot will have to add corrected measures to keep the quadcopter standing still at a certain point in the sky. The nice thing about this mode is that if you get a bit disoriented, you can release the sticks and the multirotor would return to flying flat and level. This is the perfect mode for shooting video because the drone can follow a subject, and if you release the stick, it will level out but continue to drift in that direction. In most filming/shooting attitudes, holding mode will be smooth and there won’t be an abrupt movement in the video. This mode is perfect for the videographer or the person who has a little bit of experience flying multirotor drones. The aircraft will respond to the stick movements the same way as it does in the other modes when it’s in GPS mode. In this case, it will travel to the right. When the sticks are released, the drone will level out and stop in 3D space and hold that GPS position. Little if any corrective stick movement will be necessary. RIGHT TRANSMITTER STICK CONTROL Push RIGHT TRANSMITTER STICK CONTROL Release GPS Attitude Flying Hold Mode In this mode, the multirotor drone is in constant communication with GPS satellites. This allows the controller to stabilize the drone in three-dimensional space, maintaining altitude and position. In this mode, if you should run into any problems, just release the transmitter sticks and the multirotor will stay in a stationary position until you get your bearings and input a new direction. This mode will also help the drone stay in one position during a windy day. Unlike the previous mode, the GPS mode will stop the forward movement of the multirotor when the sticks are released. There is no need for corrective stick movement in this mode. This mode is perfect for the photographer who wants to position a drone in a certain spot and take a number of photographs. Of course, because this is a GPS system; it only works outdoors with a clear view of the sky above the drone. This mode can also be used for video, however, because the GPS will try to correct any wind or movement, it could result in some shakiness transferred to the video. This will also depend on how the video camera is attached to the drone. This mode is perfect for the first-time multirotor pilot who does not have much experience in flying these aircraft. If the pilot becomes disoriented, they can, by simply releasing the sticks, have the aircraft hold this position until the pilot regains their composure. Flight Success 19

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