Testing the new mapping plane, MAV79

The 3rd plane to be added to my fleet of mappers. I took it for a mission and flew for 34 mins before landing, wonderfully stable slow flight characteristics, mission speed set at 10m/s though it will still perform well at 8m/s. Based on a Buffalo FX79 with a Pixhawk FC running the 3.3.0 firmware, equiped wit digital airspeed sensor and dual GPS sensors.  A range of sensors can be mounted from 12-24MP and a 12MP NIR sensor for NDVI work. The plane has a 680W motor with 12x6 folding props powered by 6000mah 4S batteries, for now a single battery comfortably provides over 40 minutes of flight time before its time to land which gives ample time to carry out flight missions to the current VLOS regulations in Ireland and the UK. Current developments are ongoing to have RTK GNSS incorporated onto the mapping planes to operate alongside my ground-side equipment, this will allow greater flexibility on those projects with difficult and extreme terrain. I have been carrying out commercial mapping and surveying for almost 2 years using fixed wing and multirotors, expanding the range of products that are available to my clients ranging from contractors to consultant engineering and environmental engineers in the UK and Ireland. Examples of some of my aerial mapping projects can be viewed on my Vimeo channel. 

My test area is situated at the foot of the famous Mountains of Mourne in Northern Ireland about 200 metres from my house, probably one of the most surveyed spots in the world!

MAV79 Landing from Aquila on Vimeo.

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  • Thanks Dronin, I use TerraExplorer to do these video presentations, This software is the carrier for Virtual Surveyor

  • Hi David, 

    Just saw your awesome vids on Vimeo. I was wondering, what software did you use to make the models?

  • The html version didn't work?

  • DroneLab Viewer

    United Kingdom
  • Here is a link to the ortho image produced that day. Around 500 images were captured to produce this.

    <iframe allowtransparency=true frameborder="0" webkitallowfullscreen="true" mozallowfullscreen="true" allowfullscreen="true" src="https://www.dronelab.io/map/public/view/f8bf8370f8ee4d31bf39004636739253?embed=true" style="width: 100%; height:450px"></iframe>

    United Kingdom
  • Hi Gary

    I haven't tested to the extreme as yet, but I have had it out flying missions in winds at 10m/s and no real difficulties coping with that. With the weather we usually experience in Ireland I'm looking for a platform that can cope with winds over 20mph easily, and with a little amount of rain. I really am impressed at how level the flight attitude is maintained in cross winds. So far this plane seems to tick all the boxes.

  • Hi David,

    That seems like an excellent airframe for a wide variety of missions.

    Certainly seems capable of holding a large payload.

    How is it in windy or gusty conditions?

    Best Regards,


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