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Panic time today

John Ford

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After flying for just a couple of months with no problems, today, I almost had a panic attack. I was in my neighborhood, like always. I was up about 200 ft and about 700 ft distance. Suddenly I got a message that the remote had disconnected from the quad. Luckily a few seconds later the drone did exactly what it was supposed to and triggered the return to home function. 15 or 20 seconds later I saw it flying towards me. I canceled the RTH and landed ok. Then I tried to find out what happened. There were no obstacles between me and the drone. I then remembered that where the drone was flying was near a radio station. There is a giant satellite dish outside the building and a large steel tower which looked alot like a cell tower behind the building. Is is possible that either one of those could have interfered with my signal? I don't know, but I will not be flying in that area again.
johnf
 

xspwhite

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I'm not really sure, but I would stay the hell away from radio and cell towers. Buy an $80.00 quad, and use it for flying those areas to find out for sure.
 

WildDoktor

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I dunno; I've been practicing manually orbiting a working cell tower (the kind that looks like a tree) at lunchtime and have never had an issue. I've done it probably 10 or 12 times now with now issues.


That said, I get pretty frequent video disconnects no matter where I'm flying, even sometimes when I'm 3 feet from the XSP. They don't affect my radio connection, but they do sometimes put brown spots in my shorts. :D
 
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xspwhite

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Wow! That's the the first cell tower I've seen that looks like a tree ! What will they think of next? How tall is that tower, and what state are you in? I noticed the towers by us have large cables running down from them.
 

Agustine

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I belong to a BBQ\Smoker forum and one of my buddies on there his son puts up those towers that look like trees and cactus LOL
S
He said his son is making a killing putting them things up
 

WildDoktor

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We're in California, but I've seen them in Oregon as well. This one is about 90' tall.
 

xspwhite

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It's a great idea. The ones we have out here in upper michigan really mark-up the scenery.
 

DronerOwner

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After flying for just a couple of months with no problems, today, I almost had a panic attack. I was in my neighborhood, like always. I was up about 200 ft and about 700 ft distance. Suddenly I got a message that the remote had disconnected from the quad. Luckily a few seconds later the drone did exactly what it was supposed to and triggered the return to home function. 15 or 20 seconds later I saw it flying towards me. I canceled the RTH and landed ok. Then I tried to find out what happened. There were no obstacles between me and the drone. I then remembered that where the drone was flying was near a radio station. There is a giant satellite dish outside the building and a large steel tower which looked alot like a cell tower behind the building. Is is possible that either one of those could have interfered with my signal? I don't know, but I will not be flying in that area again.
johnf
About the second or third day after I bought my drone I was flying it nearly 1/2 mile away and experienced the same thing you did. I had a 15 second panic attack but fortunately it reconnected 30 seconds or so later and was already returning to home. What a relief! It also disconnected earlier this week but almost immediately reconnected and returned to home. I handled this weeks event much better.

In both cases I've flown in those areas numerous times with no incidents. Almost seems like a random event.
 

John Ford

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The tower at the radio station that concerns me is a tower with a pair of circular antennas. Both antennas look directional. I just assumed it was some kind of cellular antenna. Who knows?

johnf
 

Bigbit

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Maybe this was crazy in hindsight, but I flew for quite a while around a disguised cell tower with no ill effects. See the 1:20 mark of my YouTube video here:
 

Agustine

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I live in Canada, I am not sure if cell tower frequencies are different here or not but I would think not. I have a cell tower 500 feet from my front door. I fly by, around and over top of that sucker all the time. Never had a problem whats so ever.
 

xspwhite

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Cellular waves are different then radio waves. Now that we've established that cell towers are okay to fly around we just need someone who's flown around a radio tower to chime in. There is a big radio tower by a town I go to and, every time in drive by it I loose my radio station for about a mile.
 

Guy

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Not expert enough to imagine all of the possibilities for interference direct, harmonic, otherwise, but the antennas at the top of the tower are parabolic elements that are going to be highly directional and unfortunately don't know how you can estimate the band that they would be using. More Rumsfeldian "known-unknowns":. Are these transmitting (or exclusively for reception of a signal), and are there any other potential sources of interference between your Autel transceiver and the cap? I have to remind myself sometimes that the source of any radio interference can occur anywhere between the two and not exclusively in the immediate area of the drone. Researching something like this more fully though may be fraught with inherent risk as you have already pointed out. :)

Sent from my XT1585 using Tapatalk
 

John Ford

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This is most definitely a risk/reward situation, and I have decided that as curious as I am to know what happened, the reward is not worth the risk. Perhaps the antenna is part of some fiendish plot by Dr Evil and I am certainly NOT Austin Powers :D:D
 

LuvMyTJ

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A few years ago many members feared cell towers. It was a topic that came up often. One member who was tired of all the speculation started posting videos of him orbiting all kinds of towers, cell towers, those towers with the round antenna balls on em, whatever was around him... never had a problem. They don't seem to affect em. I would not go out of my way to fly by one, but I do fly near them on occasion with no ill effects.
 

CrankyAl

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Cellular waves are different then radio waves. Now that we've established that cell towers are okay to fly around we just need someone who's flown around a radio tower to chime in. There is a big radio tower by a town I go to and, every time in drive by it I loose my radio station for about a mile.
Cellular phones are radio transmitters just like any hand held radio receiver/transmitter, just at very high frequencies. A scanner could pick them up if the frequencies weren't blocked to protect cell phones users from snoopers. They are radio waves (frequencies). The cell towers are repeaters for the radio frequencies to your phone.
 

67walkon

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I've flown near a satellite tracking station and never had an issue. But I don't really know if the big dishes were active.
 

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