It is probably every pilot’s worst nightmare: imagining their precious drone could stop responding to commands, become animated with a life of its own and an urge to fly away. Although this kind of dreaded fly away does happen, it is a rare phenomenon. And when a fly-away does occur, flight data confirm that in an overwhelming majority of cases, it is the result of at least one, if not several pilot errors.
Keeping the five following issues in mind will help all ANAFI pilots prevent their drones from flying away.
1. Wait for double GPS synch before taking off
The first insurance against fly-away is making sure ANAFI has a home point set, to come back to if any issue arises.
To do this, always check that both GPS icons (controller and drone) of the top bar of FreeFlight 6 are green – and not red – before taking off. You can locate your home point (or RTH point) from the FreeFlight 6 map: the icon looks like a house.
2. Mind Wi-Fi interference
Although ANAFI’s Wi-Fi communication system is exceptionally evolved and secure, interferences are every drone pilot’s enemy. Those can notably be produced by power lines, large metallic objects and, obviously, other Wi-Fi or radioelectric networks.
Therefore, Parrot advises you always choose your flying zone carefully: the more isolated, the better. Also, it is never a good idea to set up ANAFI for take-off on a car, a manhole cover or any other large metallic surface. Indeed, such massive metallic objects tend to generate interferences and wave rebounds.
3. Keep your drone in your line of sight
Keeping your eyeballs on your ANAFI at all time is not only a legal obligation, it is also a basic common-sense rule to prevent losing your precious drone: as long as you can see ANAFI, not only can you adapt its trajectory, but your controller and your drone enjoy a free and direct line of communication. Any obstacle which blocks your view will also block a good part of the Wi-Fi connection between the drone and the controller. Fly safe: always abide by the law!
4. Reset RTH point or cancel RTH
A common mistake even seasoned pilots happen to make is following their drone away from their take-off point and forgetting about it. This is especially hazardous when ANAFI took off from a drifting platform – a boat, typically.
In such cases, you can either reset ANAFI’s RTH point by landing it and performing a new take-off (the RTH point effectively resets at the end of the successful take-off procedure, but this consumes a lot of battery energy), or cancel the RTH when prompted by the FreeFlight 6 RTH alert.
Note that you can also cancel an ongoing RTH by vigorously reclaiming commands or taping the “CANCEL” box on the HUD of FreeFlight 6 – you can then pilot ANAFI until its battery’s power runs out.
5. Set a relevant RTH altitude
The latest version of FreeFlight 6 has taken many users’ demand into account: you can now set a minimum RTH altitude for ANAFI (from 20 m or 65ft to 100m or 328 ft), through the “PREFERENCES – Safety” menu of FreeFlight 6.
This way, all ANAFI pilots can adapt their RTH requirements to their flight environments.