134km/83.5 Mile, 4 hour flight with our Skywalker

I am excited to announce that on Friday, February 7th 2014, 3DR Flight Ops SD flew our modified Skywalker Airplane for over 4 hours (4:00:18 to be exact!) and covered a distance of approximately 134km or 83.5 miles.  This is a new personal record for flight time and distance, all accomplished over a few months of planning, building, and testing. Installed in this skywalker was the new Pixhawk Autopilot along with the new digital airspeed sensor, which performed flawlessly for us.

We have been testing some of the new battery technology in different configurations and we think we found the optimal configuration for the Skywalker. I have attached the KMZ and Screenshot of the flight. The tlog is 20+mb so it isn't attached at this time. We optimized for time aloft vs. distance, but we could imagine that a 100 mile flight would be possible with a slightly different flight profile. Note that this flight was performed in accordance to all DIY rules for safety, including a safety pilot in the loop and remaining within LOS at all times. The figure 8 pattern is exactly 1 mile in length, and also note that the kmz file only counts the mileage for the AUTO portion of the flight, with the remaining 2.5 miles being in FBW, Loiter, etc.

 

During the 4 hour flight we were able to capture some great air to air shots with our Y6:

 

 

Skywalker%204%20hr.kmz

Views: 10195


Moderator
Comment by Gary Mortimer on February 11, 2014 at 10:36pm

An homage to T3 Round one! Tears in the eyes tears in the eyes http://www.diydrones.com/profiles/blog/show?id=705844%3ABlogPost%3A...

Comment by AKRCGUY on February 11, 2014 at 10:45pm

Nice job!


3D Robotics
Comment by Alan Sanchez on February 11, 2014 at 10:58pm

I second that badass!!!

Comment by vova reznik on February 11, 2014 at 11:07pm

"We have been testing some of the new battery technology in different configurations and we think we found the optimal configuration for the Skywalker"

What type of battery is it?


Moderator
Comment by Gary Mortimer on February 12, 2014 at 12:48am

I expect its Panasonic based, the UA world seems to be rushing at them. Time for one of your folks to post a 100 Vova ;-)


Moderator
Comment by Graham Dyer on February 12, 2014 at 1:13am

Congratulations!

Glad to see though that our plane is not the only one with quite large variations (~30ft) in height throughout the flight.

Any idea why the consistent average altitude drop of 30-45ft in the last 1/4 of the Auto section?

Also what's your AUW?

Comment by Sergios Zafeiropoulos on February 12, 2014 at 2:27am

configuration ???

Awesome feat !!


100KM
Comment by Reto Buettner on February 12, 2014 at 2:34am

Congratulations!

Can you give some more details about battery, motor, prop and modifications on the airframe?

Comment by Wojciech Batog on February 12, 2014 at 3:40am

Nicely done!
Yet this announcement is not very informative;)
Absolutely no info about the platform: airframe, batteries, motor, prop - nothing! ;)
No info on the airspeed sensor either... availibility, pricing, etc... :P


Also 33,5 kph is not terribly impressive;)  As my gliding instructor used to say: "I'd do it faster on my bike" ;)

Comment by Walter Smit on February 12, 2014 at 4:36am

Yes, please give more info on the airspeed sensor (where can we buy it!) - since I also have a Pixhawk on the way.

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