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Auto Take-off, Orbit Mode and Complete loss of Control. Horrible crash.

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Dear All,

I just went thru the craziest of happenings just a few minutes ago.

Got my Typhoon H in the mail this last Tuesday. Attempted my first flight yesterday but I couldn't get a GPS lock: 'Signal Acquiring Issue". So I called Yuneec CS today and spoke to CS rep. named Angel. Told him about the GPS issue and we discussed possible reasons for the problem. We spoke about possibly returning the aircraft to have the GPS replaced but I told him that I was going to try calibrating the compass and the accelerometer as a last try before sending the bird back.

Anyhow, I did calibrate the compass and the accelerometer and the GPS began to function and acquired a good signal with 20 satellites!

Well, due to my full lack of experience flying, I had the Typhoon do an auto take-off and immediately placed it in orbit mode (AT LEAST I TRIED). However, the drone simply flew up so fast, at full throttle and began to hover above me locked at 120.0m! However, I had set it to a max height of 40m! I suddenly realized I had absolutely no control over the bird! Neither the auto-pilot had any control over it. After a few minutes trying to do something about this situation, I unexpectedly maintained my calm and called Yuneec CS again!

To my surprise, the same agent, Angel, took the call! I told him that the chopper was 120m above me but I had no control. He asked me to put it into manual mode which I immediately did but it was also nonresponsive. Then he asked me to put it in "Home" mode and assumed it would fly back. To no avail.

So I have a completely out of control drone above me and I am having an emergency situation call with the CS agent! He then told me that the bird would automatically land once the batteries started to get really low.

Well after some time, I began to get a red alarm on my ST16 saying that the battery was running low and that the altitude from that point on would be at 60 ft max. So the drone began to lose altitude in a controlled fashion. I got a bit excited thinking it would make a safe landing after all. That wasn't the case: the bird just dropped out of the air when it reached approximately 50 meters. It just dropped. Thank God it didn't hit anything or anyone! In that sense, I guess I got lucky.

I asked the agent if he had gone thru a similar situation and he denied ever even hearing anything similar! WOW!

Anyhow, he proceeded on the return and replacement process of the Typhoon H and I will drop it off at UPS tomorrow for the return.

I am a bit skeptical and rather scared of flying a new bird knowing that something like this can happen.

Check out this quick video with the aftermath and am being still in the call for 22+ minutes...

 
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Steve Carr

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I have to agree with Angel. I have never seen nor heard of a situation like you describe.

You say you did an auto-takeoff and then put it in orbit mode.
Can you explain how you did both of those functions?
 
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So tI set the upper right button as on auto.

Fired the rotors.

Clicked on the “tasks” option and chose auto takeoff.

Right slided the arrow to start the take off.

It took off at a very high speed and went straight to a very high altitude.

Than I chose task again and put into orbit mode.

So it hovered above me, circling, at 120m.
I am not even sure the orbit mode actually started or not... but for sure I had no control over the aircraft for 99% of the flight. Neither was the aircraft responding to the auto mode.

I was freaking out inside me but had to maintain some calm... helpless feeling... but able to at least try to get help thru the phone.

Also had hopes that it would land safely once the battery was running low.

About Angel, the cs agent, he had never been LIVE with a customer in such situation. He probably had cases of loss of control or connection, but not being actually on the phone with a customer trying to get help. He witnessed the issue live...
 
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The KP had been spiking on and off the past couple of days. if it was high that could have been a possible cause
 

PatR

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Allow me to re-cap.

Got a new bird that would not work right, but suddenly and magically did work right, so chose to try several automated functions on the first flight, and something went wrong. Even better, you called C.S. and got through while the bird was still in the air to troubleshoot the issue.

What’s wrong here?
 
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Hello, welcome to the forum.

A pity your first flight went this way. Happily you kept your calm and luckily there is no harm done to people or property.

My observations, so not judging at all, from your story are that you are a novice pilot and took your new bird out to fly in an urban area. Also you write you have put the right-upper-switch in AUTO mode. On my ST-16 there is no AUTO mode so I suppose you took off in SMART mode, which may lead to unexpected manoevres if you stand close to the take off. In SMART mode the H wants to get clear of the built-in safety zone immideately.

Now you were lucky with the CS on the phone and I am pretty sure the bird will be replaced under warranty.
I'd suggest in the mean time you buy the Yuneec Simulator and practise a bit on your computer which will be extremely helpful because you are novice pilot. The simulator uses the standard controller, so this is quite a good way to get somewhat familiar with it and get the 'touch' for the controls.

After the birds arrives back at your place best await a not to windy day and go out to an open field where you do the calibrations (far away from electrical interference, also leave your phone at a distance when calibrating). Before the first take off best wait about 15 minutes (powered on, no motors) to allow the GPS download the libraries needed. This will not use much battary, no worry.

Then put the upper rihgt switch in ANGLE mode and the right hand slider to TURTLE (or the latter maybe halfway) and take off manually to about 30 mtrs and fly around carefully. Then try to land manually and practice this simple flights until you feel happy with it. Try to get used to keep an eye on the battary levels as well.


Cheers!


Aernout

:)
 
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Hello, welcome to the forum.

A pity your first flight went this way. Happily you kept your calm and luckily there is no harm done to people or property.

My observations, so not judging at all, from your story are that you are a novice pilot and took your new bird out to fly in an urban area. Also you write you have put the right-upper-switch in AUTO mode. On my ST-16 there is no AUTO mode so I suppose you took off in SMART mode, which may lead to unexpected manoevres if you stand close to the take off. In SMART mode the H wants to get clear of the built-in safety zone immideately.

Now you were lucky with the CS on the phone and I am pretty sure the bird will be replaced under warranty.
I'd suggest in the mean time you buy the Yuneec Simulator and practise a bit on your computer which will be extremely helpful because you are novice pilot. The simulator uses the standard controller, so this is quite a good way to get somewhat familiar with it and get the 'touch' for the controls.

After the birds arrives back at your place best await a not to windy day and go out to an open field where you do the calibrations (far away from electrical interference, also leave your phone at a distance when calibrating). Before the first take off best wait about 15 minutes (powered on, no motors) to allow the GPS download the libraries needed. This will not use much battary, no worry.

Then put the upper rihgt switch in ANGLE mode and the right hand slider to TURTLE (or the latter maybe halfway) and take off manually to about 30 mtrs and fly around carefully. Then try to land manually and practice this simple flights until you feel happy with it. Try to get used to keep an eye on the battary levels as well.


Cheers!


Aernout

:)
Hi Dr Delta, I'm a little bit confused when you recommend "...the right hand slider to TURTLE (or the latter maybe halfway) and take off manually.." My belive is take off in rabbit and get of the ground to 8-10m as quick as possible. Then hover for a short while. That what I always has done (150-200 times) w/o any problems or incidents. Why in Turtle Delta? Best from Sweden
 

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@jupiter_peak Are you an experienced drone pilot?

What sort of preparation did you do before flying the Typhoon H for the first time? Did you read a manual? Have you watched YouTube videos on preparing for you first flight?
 
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@jupiter_peak Are you an experienced drone pilot?

What sort of preparation did you do before flying the Typhoon H for the first time? Did you read a manual? Have you watched YouTube videos on preparing for you first flight?
Jupiter, as rdonson asked... Are you 100%, not 99% familiar with Angle vs Smart mode, 15min idling for GPS almanack, KPI index, etc, etc? When you say 'Signal Acquiring Issue" makes me very worried...
 
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Yes, auto mode is smart mode.

As a matter of fact, the agent asked me to switch the gps off and I immeditely did. However, it began to fly away, fly away... so I just turned the gps back on and it came back towards flying over my head. None of the controls worked. Believe me. I was helpless.

I was flying over a big open park, a very bright day and not much wind.

The drone seems to have a safety feature where it will only auto takeoff once you are far enough from it. So I was quite far from it when it took off.

We also tried going angle mode... we tried so many different things but none of the controls were working.

Even if I was an expert pilot, there was no access to the aircraft other than turning off the gps(which steered it further away).

On the flipside, according to Angel, the drone should of have safely landed even with 0 controls over it. I guess this was supposed to be a safety feature for events like this.

When I saw it coming down, at a controlled rate, we both thought it would land safely.


Believe me, we tried a few different things: angle, gps off, home... nothing worked. Like there was no connection between st16 and the aircraft.

Thanks for the simulator tip. I eill get it today!

I wrote this thread not to complain or make a case against Yuneec. Quite the contrary, I was just in awe about being helpless and having a chat with the cs agent. He was halpful in making the bird airborne(calibrations) and he did his best in trying to reaquire contact with the drone while in flight. It was a scare but I was and still am in good spirits.


Hello, welcome to the forum.

A pity your first flight went this way. Happily you kept your calm and luckily there is no harm done to people or property.

My observations, so not judging at all, from your story are that you are a novice pilot and took your new bird out to fly in an urban area. Also you write you have put the right-upper-switch in AUTO mode. On my ST-16 there is no AUTO mode so I suppose you took off in SMART mode, which may lead to unexpected manoevres if you stand close to the take off. In SMART mode the H wants to get clear of the built-in safety zone immideately.

Now you were lucky with the CS on the phone and I am pretty sure the bird will be replaced under warranty.
I'd suggest in the mean time you buy the Yuneec Simulator and practise a bit on your computer which will be extremely helpful because you are novice pilot. The simulator uses the standard controller, so this is quite a good way to get somewhat familiar with it and get the 'touch' for the controls.

After the birds arrives back at your place best await a not to windy day and go out to an open field where you do the calibrations (far away from electrical interference, also leave your phone at a distance when calibrating). Before the first take off best wait about 15 minutes (powered on, no motors) to allow the GPS download the libraries needed. This will not use much battary, no worry.

Then put the upper rihgt switch in ANGLE mode and the right hand slider to TURTLE (or the latter maybe halfway) and take off manually to about 30 mtrs and fly around carefully. Then try to land manually and practice this simple flights until you feel happy with it. Try to get used to keep an eye on the battary levels as well.


Cheers!


Aernout

:)
Jupiter, as rdonson asked... Are you 100%, not 99% familiar with Angle vs Smart mode, 15min idling for GPS almanack, KPI index, etc, etc? When you say 'Signal Acquiring Issue" makes me very worried...
 
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Yes. Read the manual and saw a few videos.

Believe me, the aircraft was non responsive. Did calibrations(compass and accelerometer), finally acquired signal from 20 sats, etc., etc.

The pregious day I tried to fly at the same place but the aircraft could not acquire the gps signal.

Following day I call Yuneec and Angel suggested me to tey calibrations again to try to solve the GPS signal issue.

I ran the calibrations sequence and voila, the gps locked in signal!

So calibrations done, got a bit far from the aircraft and fired the rotors for the first time ever.

The rest is already described above.

@jupiter_peak Are you an experienced drone pilot?

What sort of preparation did you do before flying the Typhoon H for the first time? Did you read a manual? Have you watched YouTube videos on preparing for you first flight?
 
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Yes. Everything you just described except KPI index...

Yes, previous day to the crash, the gps on the bird was not able to lock into ready. It stood for more than 20mins at “acquiring” and was not able to fly. Tried to get a gps lock multiple times.

Ran a calibration sequence the next day and the gps finally acquired signal.

Listen, I could have all this info (angle, smart, home etc., etc.) the bird was nonresponsive. It didn’t matter the mode I switched it to: none of the levers were responsive. Brlieve me, I tried different options and Angel was on the phone asking me to try different things. The bird was flying on its own.

One could be an expert pilot and all, once that thing was airborne, it was flying on its own.

I honestly believe the gps was probabythe only thing working because the aircraft kept hovering in an orbit just above me. When I turned it off, by Angels recommendation, it steered away...

And again, we both expected fot the “safe landing” feature to kick in. It never did.



Jupiter, as rdonson asked... Are you 100%, not 99% familiar with Angle vs Smart mode, 15min idling for GPS almanack, KPI index, etc, etc? When you say 'Signal Acquiring Issue" makes me very worried...
 
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Sir, I believe you should try to read the post with just a little bit more attention.

You obviously missed a few details.



Allow me to re-cap.

Got a new bird that would not work right, but suddenly and magically did work right, so chose to try several automated functions on the first flight, and something went wrong. Even better, you called C.S. and got through while the bird was still in the air to troubleshoot the issue.

What’s wrong here?
 
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Sir, I believe you should try to read the post with just a little bit more attention.

You obviously missed a few details.
Note: You never know when sats are "locked" only aquired. Sats locked feature doesn't excists on Typhoon H. After a GPS calibr. you always have to wait another 12-13minutes.
 
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“Locked” is just a terminology of mine refering to the fact that the gps was ready.
I actually waited some 20mins.

Again, the only thing that was actually working was the gps.

So gps, in my opinion, was not the issue.



Note: You never know when sats are "locked" only aquired. Sats locked feature doesn't excists on Typhoon H. After a GPS calibr. you always have to wait another 12-13minutes.
 
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The KP Index is a measurement of solar flair activity . A 4 is a marginal fly day for me and 5 and over is a no fly day. These flairs can cause partial or total loss of GPS.
Also you say you were in Orbit mode, Orbit mode with the H means you set up a point of interest and then tell the H at what radius you want it to fly and I believe what height to fly and when lanched it will circle your point of interest though I have never used orbit mode on the H
 

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Sorry, you failed to mention your location. You must have called Yuneec EU. You would not have gotten through to Yuneec U.S. that quickly.
 
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I am going to make a suggestion as others on this site have and purchase a cheap drone to practice with. A good Typhoon H surrogate is the MJX X600 Hexacopter for under $60

https://www.amazon.com/MJX-Channel-...e=UTF8&qid=1524837539&sr=8-1&keywords=mjx+600

Another option is the Syma X5C Quadcopter for under $30

https://www.amazon.com/Syma-2-4G-Ca...s&keywords=syma+x5c&psc=1&smid=A3IAN4VN1Q26HU

The Typhoon H simulator is also a good idea if nothing else than to get familiar with the ST16 and it's controls, but nothing replaces flying a good trainer drone. Both of these are good to learn on and the Syma is as light as a feather and nearly impossible to break, at least when I've been 100' up, shut off the power and just let it drop, no damage over the yard. The MJX X600 isn't as floaty and behaves more like the H.

Use one of these 'beater' drones to hone your piloting skills so they become second nature and don't rely on the built in auto flight controls to fly for you. They are a great assist but not perfect or a replacement for the pilot. Just like the Tesla auto pilot doesn't make it a self driving car. Yet. You still need to know how to drive and be licensed.

Your situation is indeed unique (without knowing more of the facts) and it may be that since it started off badly there may have been no way to recover from it however, most everyone here and Yuneec says to take off in Angle mode first, then switch to Smart mode once you are in the air. Fly around a bit and don't worry initially about retracting the landing gear, just get comfortable with the bird, then switch mack to Angle mode to land. Get comfortable with landing, then while on the ground holding the left stick down until the motor sound changes, power off. Do this repeatedly through several battery recharges.

I've personally taken off by mistake in Smart mode and the Typhoon H is unresponsive while it's inside the safety circle and geofence. None of my control we responding they way they should and the H seemed to have a mind of it's own.

There is a lot to know as a pilot in addition to knowing camera operations, etc. For a new pilot it can really make your head spin.

To date, I have never used the RTH function with my H.
 
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Orbit mode it flies 25ft above.

Drone went way higher.

Also mas ceiling was ser to 40m.

The KP Index is a measurement of solar flair activity . A 4 is a marginal fly day for me and 5 and over is a no fly day. These flairs can cause partial or total loss of GPS.
Also you say you were in Orbit mode, Orbit mode with the H means you set up a point of interest and then tell the H at what radius you want it to fly and I believe what height to fly and when lanched it will circle your point of interest though I have never used orbit mode on the H
 
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No. Am in Miami, FL. And yes, got a hold of Yuneec CS USA twice with no wait.

First was to tell about gps issue and calibration. 0 wait time.

Second time was mid flight issue. Also got Angel on the line real quick.

I have nothing bad to say about the CS from Yuneec.


Sorry, you failed to mention your location. You must have called Yuneec EU. You would not have gotten through to Yuneec U.S. that quickly.
 

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