Agenda Planning & Equipment Field Testing

During Easter Holiday period, ICE2017 Team spent time at Neil & Anjas mountain hytte in Sirdal.

Here we planned more of the expedition agenda, conducted equipment upgrades and field tests on one of the expedition quadcopters, field tested Expedition Vehicle WiFi systems, and field tested Expedition Vehicles CB (Citizen Band) Radio communication equipment.

 

Gunnar has recently upgraded one of the two original expedition quadcopters from ICE2015, using parts kindly donated from one of our Expedition Sponsors – AeroView

See Blog Article: New Expedition Sponsor – AeroView AS

This is one of two quadcopters, originally built for ICE2015 by ourselves – this one survived intact from this expedition.

Equipment upgrades include full rebuild, with better equipment layout, and new Flight Controller unit.

Test flights were performed to ensure all parts functioned correctly.

Below we see the quadcopter in flight, hovering at eye level – proving its extreme stability.

 

Expedition Vehicle 1 now has an independent WiFi system on-board, allowing continuous internet access, better GPS coordination, and less reliance upon campsite internet connectivity.

This significant upgrade will be well used throughout our trip – especially by the kids !!!

The 2 white antenna on roof rack of Expedition Vehicle 1 form part of this equipment set, along with a whip areal for CB Radio.

 

The WiFi range and sensitivity was also tested during convoy driving back home.

As long as expedition vehicles stayed within reasonable distance / range with each other (e.g. 5 second driving gap) WiFi signal was maintained, allowing both vehicles to benefit from constant internet access.

 

The Expedition Vehicles CB (Citizen Band) Radio communication equipment was also successfully tested during driving in convoy back home.

The signals were clear, and normal conversation could be conducted.

A few improvement suggestions were highlighted during this field test, allowing improvements before going to Iceland.

 

 

We also spent time reviewing and improving our agenda plan for ICE2017.

The general route has been essentially set now, with key locations and campsites identified.

Once flight travel plans for Anja have been completed, fine tuning of the agenda will be in place, and the agenda plan set.

 

 

 

New Waterproof Expedition Quadcopter Planned

posted in: Quadcopter | 0

ICE2017 Team are currently reviewing options to build a second Expedition Quadcopter drone – this second one to be built with a waterproof / watertight housing, that will allow for both wet weather flying, and wet condition landings (whether by design or accident…).

The major difference with this second expedition quadcopter drone, is that all electronics and wiring will be essentially sealed within a water tight housing or shell, thus allowing the drone to operate in different and potentially more demanding weather conditions.

We are also looking at safety options, should this second expedition quadcopter drone unfortunately land on water – seeking automatically inflatable “life-vest” ideas / options, etc.

We hope to operate this drone over water zones, such as sea cliffs, waterfalls, rivers, lakes, icebergs, etc.

 

Below is a nice example from Aquacopter, of a waterproof quadcopter drone:

 

 

Gunnar is currently looking into the specs and requirements to build this second expedition quadcopter drone.

Technical suggestions and advice are warmly received.

 

To reduce costs, we are proactively seeking sponsorship donations of parts.

 

If you are a company that can help us realise this dream, we certainly look forward hearing from you.

Please review our Sponsorship & Donations page.

 

 

Thanks a lot in advance for all your help.

Quadcopter Test Flights Continue

posted in: Quadcopter | 0

Over the weekend, Gunnar conducted a number of Test Flights of the Expedition Quadcopter in Sirdal.

 

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A number Test Flight Modes were conducted, include:

  • Follow Me (Various Settings)
  • Sports Setting
  • Pre-Set Automatic Route Flying – Waypoint Circuits
  • Manual Override of Pre-Set Automatic Flight
  • Vertical Takeoff / Soft – Controlled Landings
  • Vehicle Proximity Flying
  • Battery Use and Efficiency Testing
  • General Equipment Use…

 

Below we can see the Expedition Quadcopter hovering just about Expedition Vehicle 2, as a test to see how close we can bring safely bring these vehicles together.

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As always, we kept a close eye on the Expedition Quadcopter, as each Test Flight was safely conducted.

 

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These Test Flights will continue, as we continuously improve the Expedition Quadcopter performance capabilities.

 

For more detailed information about our Expedition Quadcopter, read the Expedition Quadcopter page, under Projects.

 

New Project Page – Expedition Quadcopter

posted in: Quadcopter | 0

Today, we published a new page under “Projects”, called “Expedition Quadcopter“.

This page provides technical details about our new Expedition Quadcopter,
and provides an insight into what functionality we hope to achieve with this new model.

The new Expedition Quadcopter is much more powerful, and has many more options than the ones used during ICE2015.

Please read the “Expedition Quadcopter” page under “Projects” for more details.

If you have any comments or suggestions for how we could improve our Expedition Quadcopter performance, we would love to hear from you.

 

Advanced Expedition Quadcopter Testing

posted in: Quadcopter | 0

This weekend, Gunnar conducted a number of test flights in various “Follow-Me” Mode Settings, on our new and more advanced Expedition Quadcopter.

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The weather conditions were perfect for test flight execution, with clear blue skies, very little wind, and no rain.

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The Quadcopter was tested mainly on 3 “Follow-Me” Mode Settings (“Leash”, “Side” & “Circle”), as well as “Go Home” Mode (Automatic Return and Land at Start Point Coordinates) once the test flights were completed.

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All tests flights proved successful, and were filmed using a GoPro camera mounted on the Quadcopter.

Below are a few short video sections from these test flights, to show the capabilities of our new and more advanced Expedition Quadcopter.

 

 

 

Both Tuva and Dina also took the opportunity to conduct training flights on the old (ICE2015) Expedition Quadcopter.
They had great fun flying this, and received some useful hints & tips from Gunnar, to help them improve their piloting skills.

Quite a few propeller blades were sacrificed in the process……….

Dina Begins Developing Quadcopter Piloting Skills

posted in: Quadcopter | 0

Over the Easter Holiday period, Dina started her first training steps, to begin developing her Quadcopter Piloting Skills.

Mini Quadcopter

She has started with a small Mini-Quadcopter, which requires considerable skills to fly with accuracy.

This forms an idea tool to start her training, and develop her piloting skills.

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Dina hopes to join Gunnar, as one of our Expedition Quadcopter Pilots in Iceland next year.

New Expedition Quadcopter Test Flight

posted in: Quadcopter | 0

This weekend, we travelled back to Neil & Anjas Sirdal hytte, to conduct some final adjustments and first Test Flight, of the new and much improved Expedition Quadcopter.

New Expedition Quadcopter

The new and much larger and more powerful (5 horse power) Expedition Quadcopter was built from scratch by Gunnar, using the knowledge and field experience gained from the 2 Expedition Quadcopters he built and flew for our previous expedition ICE2015.

New Expedition Quadcopter Testing

 

Unfortunately, the weather turned out to be a lot worse than expected, with heavy snow virtually all weekend.

Sirdal Hytte - Lots of Snow

However, there was a short weather window on Saturday, when the snow stopped falling for a period of time, allowing a short, but decisive Test Flight.

Expedition Vehicle 2 - Snowed Under

 

Test Flight results, indicated a number of minor adjustments were required, to optimize flying capabilities.

 

We will be working on these adjustments and improvements over the next few weeks, to continue our Test Flight Programme, in order to ensure that the Expedition Quadcopter is fully operational and optimal – ready in good time for the Iceland trip.

 

We will be covering a lot more information on the Expedition Quadcopter in our Projects Page in the near future.

 

If you have any experience to share with us on this subject, we will be pleased to hear from you.