Back Out Flying Again
It has been very good to be able to meet up again, all be it in a socially distanced way. We have made the most of it, and of the good weather we have been enjoying, to get back out and do some more work with our drone.
We have, on several occasions since restrictions were eased and the regulations allowed, visited one of the more remote sites we have permission to fly. This has been a conscious decision with the site being carefully chosen to minimise the possibility of contact with the public. First on the agenda was some important ‘stick time’ for Pete to refamiliarise himself with piloting the drone which he’d been unable to do during the period of lockdown and restrictions. Carl, thankfully, has been able to keep up his flying hours, flying the drone from his back garden in the remote village he lives in. Next on the agenda was to begin to look at our research and conduct some basic experimental flights over a route seeded with targets. The observer was unaware of the location of these targets, on this occasion golf balls. The challenge was in the detection. Multiple passes were made of the route at different altitudes, speeds and different angles and degrees of zoom on the drone’s camera. This work is still ongoing, subject to any further restrictions of course. The collection and analysis of a comprehensive data set will hopefully enable us to determine and recommend optimum settings in order to maximise the chances of finding a target.