Welcome, Autel Pilots!
Join our free Autel drone community today!
Join Us

Help! EVO II stopped responding to controller, hovered, then fell HARD.

PeteInCT

New Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2021
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Age
54
Good afternoon, everybody. I work for a fire department, and we recently took delivery of the EVO II Enterprise. I've taken it out for a couple test flights (I am a Part 107 pilot and fly my own Parrot Anafi regularly.) Did some flight tests today, up to 400', photos, video, then a "Smart Orbit" over our building. After the orbit, I hit "stop" and returned to manual flight. I then got a "RTH initiated" with 8 minutes of flight time left. I canceled the RTH and manually brought it to the asphalt apron of the FD station lot (light poles in the grassy area) and was bringing it down to land when it stopped about 50 feet off the ground, about 24 feet away from the set "home" location. The "radar" sensor picked up the light pole 10 or 15 feet away from one side, but it completely stopped responding to the stick controls. Just hovering at that height. Showed 5 minutes of flight time left. Camera still connected, able to broadcast through attached speaker, just wouldn't respond to any joystick down, up, left or right. I even tried the RTH button to see if that would "wake it up" but nothing.
Then it just landed, didn't really lower itself....it just flew straight down onto the asphalt. Flight log on the smart controller shows it had 7 minutes and 23% power left after hovering in place for over 5 minutes (with no controller movement) then descended from 50 to zero in 5 seconds.

I feel lucky because despite a scratch at the bottom of the gimbal and some scuffed props, it seems OK. Was able to change battery and powered up properly, good camera and thermal imagery. I'll change the props out, but I need to know what happened. Why would it literally just stop responding?
 
Last edited:

DaveMH

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 20, 2020
Messages
82
Reaction score
52
Location
Central FL, USA
Hind sight, maybe, if the object avoidance was holding it back - you could have turned it off, just to see if that helped.
Just me, but I never run the battery down below 30%. Don't really pay much attention to time remaining.
Glad there was little damage - that's an expensive bird you have.
 

PeteInCT

New Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2021
Messages
2
Reaction score
0
Age
54
Hind sight, maybe, if the object avoidance was holding it back - you could have turned it off, just to see if that helped.
Just me, but I never run the battery down below 30%. Don't really pay much attention to time remaining.
Glad there was little damage - that's an expensive bird you have.
I was too nervous to shut down the smart controller for fear of a flyaway, since it was acting so strangely. The avoidance should never stop all joystick movement, just in the direction of any obstacle. It wasn't battery charge, as the flight log still shows 23% when it flew straight down. I also noticed that the altitude in the flight log went from 27 feet (the actual height when this happened) to 56 feet, even though I never increased altitude. Then, when it came down, it went up to 18mph just before impact with the ground. It never "saw" the ground and attempted to land, just flew straight down, picking up speed. I've uploaded the flight logs to Autel and waiting to hear back from their techs on what happened. I will not fly this again until I hear exactly what happened and what they can do to mitigate this.
 

goldenu2

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
49
Reaction score
28
Age
53
I was too nervous to shut down the smart controller for fear of a flyaway, since it was acting so strangely. The avoidance should never stop all joystick movement, just in the direction of any obstacle. It wasn't battery charge, as the flight log still shows 23% when it flew straight down. I also noticed that the altitude in the flight log went from 27 feet (the actual height when this happened) to 56 feet, even though I never increased altitude. Then, when it came down, it went up to 18mph just before impact with the ground. It never "saw" the ground and attempted to land, just flew straight down, picking up speed. I've uploaded the flight logs to Autel and waiting to hear back from their techs on what happened. I will not fly this again until I hear exactly what happened and what they can do to mitigate this.

I wish you the best of luck with Autel support: they have been utterly useless in the 4 weeks I've been asking for them for help with the bug-ridden software they've hilariously called "Enterprise grade."
 

gschulzuio

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 14, 2020
Messages
337
Reaction score
158
Couple of thoughts and echo the above.

Unlike some other aircraft (e.g. DJI), when the EVO II battery gets to its second low warning, it will try to land where ever it is at, you can control it, however if first time encounter, it can catch you off guard. Check your low battery warning levels and adjust as needed. Also try going to a very open area, let the aircraft get down to its lowest warning level (have the aircraft near you and low, however at least a few meters up, it tends to want to autoland when about a meter), if it goes into landing mode, you can then experience and still have proximity and altitude to see how it behaves which is different than a normal RTH.

Also keep in mind that a push of the button (top right) followed by a confirmation tap you can disable OA, granted, when things are happening fast remembering to tap the button and then the confirmation takes you away from flying the aircraft. So worth doing some practice turning oa on/off before you need it.
 

halzucati

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 16, 2021
Messages
197
Reaction score
150
Age
46
Location
Maple Valley, Washington
Website
www.zucaticorp.com
I wonder if this is related to some of the "battery not showing the correct state of charge" issues I've been reading about in other groups?
Where the system shows the wrong state of charge and reacts based on that wrong information.
Something to keep an eye on.

Also, seems like the common thread here is that "smart" functions were being used when the problem occured. Orbit and Panorama?
 

John Lord

Member
Joined
Jul 25, 2020
Messages
17
Reaction score
15
Age
73
Good afternoon, everybody. I work for a fire department, and we recently took delivery of the EVO II Enterprise. I've taken it out for a couple test flights (I am a Part 107 pilot and fly my own Parrot Anafi regularly.) Did some flight tests today, up to 400', photos, video, then a "Smart Orbit" over our building. After the orbit, I hit "stop" and returned to manual flight. I then got a "RTH initiated" with 8 minutes of flight time left. I canceled the RTH and manually brought it to the asphalt apron of the FD station lot (light poles in the grassy area) and was bringing it down to land when it stopped about 50 feet off the ground, about 24 feet away from the set "home" location. The "radar" sensor picked up the light pole 10 or 15 feet away from one side, but it completely stopped responding to the stick controls. Just hovering at that height. Showed 5 minutes of flight time left. Camera still connected, able to broadcast through attached speaker, just wouldn't respond to any joystick down, up, left or right. I even tried the RTH button to see if that would "wake it up" but nothing.
Then it just landed, didn't really lower itself....it just flew straight down onto the asphalt. Flight log on the smart controller shows it had 7 minutes and 23% power left after hovering in place for over 5 minutes (with no controller movement) then descended from 50 to zero in 5 seconds.

I feel lucky because despite a scratch at the bottom of the gimbal and some scuffed props, it seems OK. Was able to change battery and powered up properly, good camera and thermal imagery. I'll change the props out, but I need to know what happened. Why would it literally just stop responding?
I had a failure with an Enterprise last week. It was at 328ft and I initiated a spherical panorama. I have done quite a lot of panoramas but this time after 4 images the Smart Controller lost contact with the aircraft and it soon became clear the aircraft had crashed. There was something like 90% battery. It happened over a wood but fortunately my wife managed to find it. Strangely the fuselage and gimbal have no signs of damage but the motors have broken off two arms. All propellers were attached but obviously broken. When my wife found it, it was flat like it had tried to land but that might be a red herring. The kit is with my dealer and yesterday we got the text and bin files off the aircraft that Autel Customer Support require. The aircraft had flown 4.7 hours and had done a number of panoramas and videos. Clearly this is quite worrying as once the panorama has been initiated there is no user input until it has finished. Given that there were no obstacles at 328ft and no birds like buzzards it points to an onboard component failure of a software glitch. Hopefully Autel will be able to determine the cause of the crash. In the meantime I would urge anyone with an Enterprise to fly cautiously until more is known.
 

SARty

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2021
Messages
148
Reaction score
56
Unlike some other aircraft (e.g. DJI), when the EVO II battery gets to its second low warning, it will try to land where ever it is at, you can control it...

How is this different from other aircraft?
 

gschulzuio

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 14, 2020
Messages
337
Reaction score
158
How is this different from other aircraft?
Based on experience the Autel EVO II will take a more aggressive approach to landing where it is when it hits the lower threshold (e.g. second warning), vs DJI which has more slack when you hit the second, lower limit barrier. The first time you encounter the lower, second alert with Autel and it starts to do something you were not expecting, it can catch you off guard.
 

SARty

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2021
Messages
148
Reaction score
56
Based on experience the Autel EVO II will take a more aggressive approach to landing where it is when it hits the lower threshold (e.g. second warning), vs DJI which has more slack when you hit the second, lower limit barrier. The first time you encounter the lower, second alert with Autel and it starts to do something you were not expecting, it can catch you off guard.

To clarify, both Autel and DJI enter auto landing mode when reaching critically low battery. Both will auto descend, both can be countered. I'm not aware of any behavior differences between them with regard to this mode.
 

gschulzuio

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 14, 2020
Messages
337
Reaction score
158
To clarify, both Autel and DJI enter auto landing mode when reaching critically low battery. Both will auto descend, both can be countered. I'm not aware of any behavior differences between them with regard to this mode.
Yup, and by default the Autel on the 2nd notice is more likely to start landing sooner vs what I see with the DJI. And to clarify, if you are aware what the Autel is likely to do, you will be more ready to counter the behavior, otherwise, the first time can catch you off guard.
 

Latest threads

Members online

Forum statistics

Threads
8,386
Messages
80,018
Members
6,302
Latest member
CB799