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Drone stops and can only be flown manually

During mapping missions yesterday using terrain following my P4P V2 kept abruptly stopping, then refusing to continue or even stop the mission (though it would respond to RTH). I understand that low angle sunlight can cause the anti-collision sensors to activate, but this was happening in both directions on a basically east-west flight axis, so unless it was firing forward sensors in one direction and rearward in the other, I can't explain it. I found I could continue the mission by holding the throttle forward and it would still follow the plan, but even then it would abruptly stop, I'd let the throttle off and it would back up a little, then it would allow me to continue the flight. You can see the AirData logs here (https://app.airdata.com/share/hbQvpv), but I can't find anything unusual at all in them.

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This is not something that we can address in the app. Why would it automatically continue on if something on the hardware had stopped it? Kind of defeats the purpose... 

As you found you can continue the flight by instructing the aircraft to move on. You can also handle this by pausing the mission and then pressing Continue (hey, look, it is handled in the app! We aren't shameful! Yay!)

You did not provide the Map Pilot log file which is what would actually tell what caused the aircraft to stop so we provided multiple links to cover multiple cases. By the time the data gets uploaded to AirData and displayed using the public links the important information has been stripped out. 

When the aircraft stops, the pilot in charge should identify the cause  using the Aircraft Errors screen and make a decision on whether it is safe to more forward with the flight or not. 

For most mapping flights, it is safe to operate without the Obstacle Avoidance system turned on since you are flying high. Such settings would keep these annoying stoppages from occurring if that was indeed the problem. 

Zane
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All these comments but it has never been fixed in the app? Isn't that a little bit shameful?

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I had read three of these before I posted, by the way. The SYS ERROR CHECK post is not really relevant.

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All it needs is for the app to be enabled to resume flight after an obstacle is detected. Turning off all obstacle avoidance sort of defeats the advantage of having these kinds of drones.

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Actually you cannot pause and resume after this happens as the Stop button no longer responds. As I said in the original post.

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Also, you should know that I am getting private Messenger responses from people I trust on the Maps Made Easy FB group telling me I should stop using Map Pilot because it is no longer reliable. True or not, doesn't really matter, but it does seem you have a major perception problem. Just lucky that the two other apps that can handle terrain following are much worse.

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There are lots of things that happen on the aircraft that can cause it to stop flying. We rely on the DJI Diagnostics information and display that in the Aircraft Errors panel so the pilot can take appropriate action. Did you actually inspect your log file to determine the cause of the issue or refer the Aircraft Errors panel? The AirData plot does not display this information but a simple look at the CSV file as instructed in those links would provide some actual insight. 

We would love to be able to fix things like this. But there are certain cases where handling it in the app is not the answer. 

Once the aircraft has been set on a path in waypoint flight there are certain things that are handled on the aircraft and no app-based controls do anything. At that point the manual controls are given precedence so the pilot in charge is actually in charge. 

There are a lot of people that don't like that Map Pilot is no longer maintained and Map Pilot Pro is only really usable if you are a paying Maps Made Easy customer. Due to various increased costs we cannot continue to support every user our there that purchased the app 5+ years ago for a couple of dollars. There is no guarantee of the term any app will be available as a one-off app purchase. At least on a subscription you know that it is a two way street as opposed to just hoping that it is supported for free forever.  

Map Pilot Pro is for Maps Made Easy customers. We support our customers. We are opting not to spend our limited resources for users that process their data elsewhere since that is unsustainable as a business. 

 

Zane 0 votes
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Upon inspection of your flight log file that was uploaded to our system we have found the following errors were present before leaving the ground.

  • Aircraft GPS
  • Error Aircraft Encoder Error
  • IMU is initializing. Do not move the aircraft until initialization is complete

These were repeating over and over throughout the flight. 

  • Aircraft Encoder Error
  • The aircraft's angle is too great. Place aircraft on a flat - level surface and restart. Contact DJI Support if the error persists

The initial messages say that there was something wrong and the repeating messages are a sign of a serious aircraft-side error and 

In older versions of Map Pilot the only way to access this information is by looking at the DJI Diagnostics column of the log file. Map Pilot Pro shows this information in the Aircraft Errors panel which highlights orange when something is wrong. 

Please note, there is nothing having to do with the obstacle avoidance system. Data is better than conjecture.

Zane 0 votes
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Are you suggesting that if I subscribe to MME I can get a more reliable version of MP? If so, I am happy to do that as I believe your app is worth paying for. I already paid for terrain following. But I don't need MME for processing, so I'd only be subscribing to get access to a more reliable and supported version of the app. Let me know what subscription would be required to get that please. I don't expect anything for free.

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Map Pilot Pro (which is separate app) is what the last 8 months of development has been spent on. No new development has gone into Map Pilot other than bug fixes during that time in anticipation of this cut over. 

Due to increased costs per use that we are paying we designed Map Pilot Pro to be used by our mapping customers. You can either purchase mapping points which comes with access to the app for a limited period of time or you can subscribe to the tier that has the features you need. The subscriptions are priced to be accessible even for app-only users. 

The Base tier is required if Terrain Awareness is your primary concern but costs only $5 per month. It includes 500 acres of custom terrain processing as well which is super applicable in mining and would normally have cost extra. 

https://www.mapsmadeeasy.com/map_pilot

Zane 0 votes
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Zane, you mentioned in this post

"Upon inspection of your flight log file that was uploaded to our system we have found the following errors were present before leaving the ground.

Aircraft GPS
Error Aircraft Encoder Error
IMU is initializing. Do not move the aircraft until initialization is complete
These were repeating over and over throughout the flight. 

Aircraft Encoder Error
..."

It seems that other user running P4P v2 on Map Pilot have "Aircraft Encoder Error" not only me.

I will do additional testing on another P4P v2 drone and other iPad to check if this error persists with other P4P v2 drone.

Vladimir Sviridov 0 votes
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Where specifically do I find those logs in iOS? Flew again today and although Go 4 said everything was good, MP Pro insisted on IMU and GPS calibration but would not complete either of them. Then refused to start the motors after I uploaded the Mission and clicked "Start". Switched to MP free, same drone, same mission, flew right away. FYI the first flight had obstacle avoidance enabled and kept stopping like before. Second and subsequent flights had OA disabled and it flew fine, no issues. So although you say the problem is IMU related, it still seems to be caused by obstacle avoidance being triggered.

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It sounds like the IMU might still be initializing for both of you after the power up. It might make sense to slow things down a bit in your change overs. If the IMU isn't happy the flight isn't going to go very well and all sorts of bad things can happen.

To be honest, we have no idea what an "Aircraft Encoder Error" actually means. These are all errors that are reported directly from the aircraft and they are displayed exactly as they are reported. 

We do the majority of our testing on a P4Pv2 and don't see these errors being reported. 

Are you are actually checking things out in the DJI app after the battery swap and make sure the errors are not present before closing that app and reconnecting with Map Pilot?

While you are swapping things in and out for debugging purposes make sure you are using an iOS device with an A10 processor or better to rule out processor issues. 

The logs are found in the File Manager screen. Every single flight gets a .CSV file generated for it which has all of the information from that flight. 

Map Pilot does not actually fly the aircraft. The aircraft flies the aircraft. Map Pilot is used to program waypoints into the aircraft. In waypoint flight if you have obstacle avoidance enabled it will stop the aircraft. We generally recommend turning it off because it causes more problems than it solves unless you are flying unusually low. 

Zane 0 votes
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