P4P v2 Flyaway - who do I report it to- Chicago area?

Stanzp4p

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Don't know about reporting but I had the same problem that turned out to be a bad 3 in one. Even if you lose connection like I did the location where it landed will be on the map. I just expanded the map, followed and found my drone on a front yard few blocks away.
 
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At the time I was too freaked to think about pulling the log. The screen went black shortly after the disconnect message and I really had no clue where to look. With the wind and it’s altitude I was envisioning it blowing into downtown or onto the expressway a mile or so east. Didn’t know about the auto-land failsafe.

So we eventually left the area. If it did land safely someone surely has it by now.
 

Meta4

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Even if you lose connection like I did the location where it landed will be on the map. I just expanded the map, followed and found my drone on a front yard few blocks away.
That won't help in this case.
The position data the the drone was sending is incorrect.
See post #16
 
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Your drone shouldn't be losing GPS if it's out in the open with a good view of more than half of the sky.
But if it has lost GPS and then loses signal, there's only one place it will go.
That's straight down in autolanding +/- a little for drift with any wind there may have been.
From 178 feet, the autolanding should have taken 18 seconds which will limit how far it might have drifted while coming down.

Go to DJI Flight Log Viewer | Phantom Help
Follow the instructions there to upload your flight record from your phone or tablet.
That will give you a detailed report of the flight.
Come back and post a link to the report it gives you.
Or .. just post the txt file here.
Hey Meta4 - thanks for your time & info.
Today I took one of my P3P's down to the location I lost my P4P last week.
Hadn't flown them much since 2018 when I got the P4P. Anyway, took it up and towards the area I first Lost GPS, then downlink. And as I got to altitude and a bit west of my homeport - I LOST my DOWNLINK - just for a second or so, then got it back.
I flew back overhead and went East following a line of trees hoping to find my P4P somewhere and when 604' away @ 137' altitude, again lost my Downlink - for 8 sec. and RTH initiated. Had a good 16 satellites and a good lock.
But its a bit crazy. Going west I had it in view the whole time. Yet still lost the link. Going East there were a lot of trees between my and the bird, but at 137' not really too obscured. I think there is heavy Wi-Fi interference there.

To the west is a hospital zone (more than one) and a Heliport.
Anyway I'd love to hear your thoughts on the health of the P3P. I want to sell both of them to go towards a new bird.
And this time I intend to get a subscription to FlightReader and pay attention to my logs...
 

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Meta4

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Going west I had it in view the whole time. Yet still lost the link. Going East there were a lot of trees between my and the bird, but at 137' not really too obscured. I think there is heavy Wi-Fi interference there.
The DJI Go app does not record data on signal strength as DJI Go 4 does.
So all we have to go on is the drone losing signal only 442 ft and 139 ft from home and a message of Strong wireless interference immediately after.

The most likely explanation would be interference in the local area.
The obvious way to confirm whether the issue was caused by local interference or an issue with the drone would be to try flying in an interference-free place.
 
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Which is what I did this morning. This pano was done over 1,900' away. No Wi-Fi warnings at all for either of my 2-P3P's

DJI_0629-Pano.jpg
 
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Do I need to be concerened about the battery cell deviation at a couple points? actually looks like I was hovering (0mph) the 2 times it shows in the log.
I noticed that on one of my flights yesterday. It wouldn't be surprising. I've had the batteries a long time and they've barely been used the past 3 years since I got the P4P.
But I do keep them 40~60% and check every 3 months on the charge.
Screen Shot 2022-10-28 at 3.33.37 PM.png


there was another few sec. of deviation towards the end of this flight 7m34s- again hovering or even just running while on the ground for maybe 2 sec. total.
 

Meta4

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Do I need to be concerned about the battery cell deviation at a couple points? actually looks like I was hovering (0mph) the 2 times it shows in the log.
I noticed that on one of my flights yesterday. It wouldn't be surprising. I've had the batteries a long time and they've barely been used the past 3 years since I got the P4P.
But I do keep them 40~60% and check every 3 months on the charge.
Batteries degrade over time and don't last forever.
Those numbers look pretty good considering the age of the batteries.
Some deviations are normal.
Here's what Airdata says about cell voltage deviations:

Minor Deviations
Minor deviation is when a cell differs more than 0.01v from the other cells. The total amount of deviations per cell is then divided by the total amount of flight minutes, to get the number of minor deviations per minute.

Note that even a perfect battery would have minor deviations and it is normal. Lower values are better. Higher values may provide an early sign that the battery is not as efficient.

Major Deviations
Major deviation is when a cell differs more than 0.07v from the other cells.
Please note that normal batteries can have a few of these.
An abnormal battery will:
A) Have most of the major deviations in one cell
B) There will be multiple major deviations per minute, and more than 10 total
C) The deviations continue longer than 1 minute
If your battery shows all symptoms (example, another) then this is considered a more severe case of an inefficient battery and may impact the battery life.
If your battery has only 1-4 instances on the same cell, don't worry too much about it. If it has 5-10 instances - then continue to track and make sure it does not degrade.
 
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Batteries degrade over time and don't last forever.
Those numbers look pretty good considering the age of the batteries.
Some deviations are normal.
Here's what Airdata says about cell voltage deviations:

Minor Deviations
Minor deviation is when a cell differs more than 0.01v from the other cells. The total amount of deviations per cell is then divided by the total amount of flight minutes, to get the number of minor deviations per minute.

Note that even a perfect battery would have minor deviations and it is normal. Lower values are better. Higher values may provide an early sign that the battery is not as efficient.

Major Deviations
Major deviation is when a cell differs more than 0.07v from the other cells.
Please note that normal batteries can have a few of these.
An abnormal battery will:
A) Have most of the major deviations in one cell
B) There will be multiple major deviations per minute, and more than 10 total
C) The deviations continue longer than 1 minute
If your battery shows all symptoms (example, another) then this is considered a more severe case of an inefficient battery and may impact the battery life.
If your battery has only 1-4 instances on the same cell, don't worry too much about it. If it has 5-10 instances - then continue to track and make sure it does not degrade.
I didn't think it was too bad, but now I am REALLY looking at the logs....
 
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Well, finally happened. I first lost GPS, then connection to controller 3 min into a flight on a clear sunny day.

I'd turned on drone, waited a minute, took off & hovered about 10' until a got the GPS Homepoint lock, then rose to ~140', rotated around to view possible obstacles, (none nearby) as I was at West end of a decent size park, wanted to go a bit further west to show park in foreground. So rose a bit more and backed up a bit - then lost GPS, went into ATTI mode. Line of trees that had been behind me blocked immediate view of drone so I wasn't sure what direction to fly it back and wind was ~15mph.

While attempting to find my takeoff spot in camera, then lost connection, then the screen view went black.
Tried RTH, but of course, with no GPS and no connection to controller, that did not work.
Log says at 3min into flight, I was 311' away (wish I'd seen that immediately) and 178' height AGL. But it was drifting with the wind and by the time I lost connection it could have been quite far from where I was looking.

While totally bummed at losing my P4P, I am more concerned WHERE it went and how it came down.
Kind of dreading the official phone call "Mr. Ellis? Do you own a DJI Phantom 4 pro drone???"......

So immediately tried to find where & who to call to report it. Not an easy thing.
Did call local FSDO for O'Hare airport region. Voice mail. Left messages in 2 places there.
Did an online report with NASA Aviation Safety Reporting System.

And working on my Flight logs now.

What's my next move - as a Part 107 flyer?, I want to do the correct thing in reporting.
First time since I started flying in 2014 I had to do this.
UPDATE!! FOUND !


Amazingly enough, almost 6 weeks later, There are still honest people in the world...
Got a call this afternoon from a nice young guy - Indian or Pakistani from his name & accent. Says his roommate first spotted it and it was on the sidewalk a couple blocks from their place. Broken up- camera & gimbal torn off, one arm broken & some other damage.
Battery still lights up!

He said he thought at least the battery might be usable…
Could actually be repairable. Have to see when I get it. I might consider it. Then I’d have a backup - and the P4P has the mechanical shutter which is still needed for mapping….

Pretty funny. My guess is it was stuck in a tree and finally the wind brought it down…..
Its a good 6 blocks away from where the flight logs said it ended up. With no GPS, that was a false reading. The flight log showed the path ending in the group of townhomes at the east end of that big field just east of my Homepoint.
69171742381__81FE1A4B-3003-4586-9761-A9C185771132.jpg
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69171763761__494DEC65-6BB3-47CA-8930-4D73A2B9C0E7.jpg

He just sent me photos. Theres a possibility it may be reapairable. If motors are good and internals , it needs a new shell, gimbal & camera. But....don't know how wet its gotten. Theres been a few big rains since the crash- but maybe....
 
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Picking it up Sunday. I’ll see what can be done. Thx
 
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Picked it up from my Good Samaritans- 2 UIC students.
I am seriously amazed. It was probably up in a tree for almost 6 weeks. During that time we had some heavy rains.
They found it in the sidewalk a couple days ago.
Battery is charging now. No damage to it at all.
I put another battery and fired it up, Got a message that there was a mismatch in the device firmware. So I’m not sure if it was that I updated DJI go 4 or there was something that wanted to update in the drone itself. possible it’s that I updated the iOS on my iPad and it was saying there was a mismatch between the transmitter and the iPad. I’m not sure. It didn’t take as long as a real firmware update for the drone itself.
But, the bird did start up, and all the lights came on, the propellers did their little wiggle dance at the beginning, and gave me the impression that it would’ve started up the motors if I tried , but with one arm hanging off, and the other one cracked I wasn’t going to try. I am going to send it to DJI and see what they say. It’s just good to know what happened to it.

My main concern at the time when it lost connection was that it might drift into something and cause damage or harm. I’m glad that the auto land feature when you lose connection did what it was supposed to do.
 

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