The “Ioncraft”, a mini-drone developed in California, weighs only 30 milligrams and measures just 2×2 cm. Unlike other mini-drones, it does not fly with the help of electric motors and rotors, but with the power of ions. Due to the built-in electrohydrodynamic engines, the “Ioncraft” accelerates by the collision of ions with neutral molecules, which are ionized and accelerated by the engines in an electric field. The world’s smallest drone can be controlled similarly to other quadrocopters, but the energy supply and data communication are not yet very mature.
The installed EHD engines are to be used in the future not only in drones but also in larger flying objects. They are highly important for research, as they can be used, for example, in space research, but also in agriculture, rescue operations and environmental research.
Rotor Riot has released a new 3 “frame: the Ummagawd Acrobrat . And the frame inspires!
Who is the “Umagawd Acrobrat” designer Tommy Tibajia?
Tommy Tibajia – better known by his pilot name Ummagawd (wonderful phonetic wordplay btw!) Is probably one of the most famous pilots on the FPV scene with Rotor Riot . Especially because he faces up to any challenge and if it is possible somehow masters (remember the Duga Dive ?).
Besides, he was always very tech-savvy and made some of the nicest build videos, flew in the DRL and starred in many Rotor Riot videos.
And lately? He has gone under the frame designers and brought to the market one of the most-discussed and most popular freestyle ramen in the remix.
Rotor Riot operates the 3 “hype with the Ummagawd Acrobrat
I myself am a big fan of the 3 “class: The HGLRC XJB-145 is currently my favorite racer and I think the 3 inch FPV quads are the most versatile quads. It is possible to bring them under the magical 250g but you can also strap on a GoPro session – besides they are usually very sturdy and not as loud as bigger ones and parts and lipo batteries are significantly cheaper than the big 5 inch FPV drones.
With the Ummagawd Acrobrat, Rotor Riot now serves this “up-and-coming” class and I’m really looking forward to seeing more movement.
3 “never looked so good
What is so special about the Ummagawd Acrobrat?
Unlike most of the frames on the market, Rotor Riot (or Tommy Tibajia) has given the Ummagawd Acrobat some special features that I like very well:
First, it is the reinforced frame – with its additional bracing on the front and rear, the Acrobrat should be particularly stable. And I think that you can see the frame too. Unfortunately, this is also due to a fairly high weight of 54g.
On the other hand, it is the long, flat construction adopted from the remix , in which the 20x20mm components are installed one behind the other and not stacked in a stack.
This ensures that the LiPo battery almost moves between the propellers and thus the mass is closer to the center , which provides better flight characteristics. Exactly this point I find really exciting and innovative.
Motor Position : True X
Motor Distance : 115mm
Frame Size: 141x141mm
Frame Height: 55.5mm
Weight = 54g
Should I buy the Ummagawd Acrobrat? Price in Germany
I like the Acrobrat sucker. So really good. And I’m thinking of building an FPV racing drone based on the frame.
If not the price. The Acrobrat costs until he is in Germany 60-70 euros, and that’s a pretty bang for a small 3 inch frame.
But I’m up for the build. What do you all mean? Should I get him?
Rotor Riot Acrobat Build List
OK, let me plan what I could block for parts. I think I can still use a little help:
TS100 Soldering Iron – The ultimate soldering iron for FPV (and ever!)
The TS100 – the soldering iron for all cases
In the FPV scene, you can argue super: Everyone has their subjective views, why one propeller is better than the other … and the frame flies better than this. But the TS100 is different: Here, everyone seems united: the TS100 is the best FPV soldering iron! A consensus rarely experienced otherwise.
The advantages of the TS100
I’ll just do that in bullet points:
The speed until the TS100 has reached its working temperature is simple ! I do not know anyone else who heats so fast. It’s always a blast to look at the small display and watch the numbers go by.
TS100 is really tiny, light and has a huge advantage: it has a standard power connector, to which a with an adapter cable 4S or 6S batterycan be connected, so you can perform from the power grid and out in the field repairs and soldering work.
Weight and workmanship
The TS 100 is hardly bigger and heavier than a pen. This, of course, makes him the ideal companion for the road. But still it is not a second-class device: The workmanship is impeccable and the soldering tips meet the highest demands.
Display and open firmware
On the tiny but still very readable display, you get the temperature or the status (Standby, Hot …) displayed. Yes, the TS100 has a standby mode, because an acceleration sensor reveals the firmware whether the soldering iron is being used and turns it off when not in use in standby and later or drives him from the standby lightning fast again by simply put it in the Hand takes. That’s fascinating!
The firmware is also Flashbar, there are already mods for the TS 100 and you can also program something yourself.
All in all, the TS100 is simply an incredibly awesome product. I do not know anybody who was not fascinated after holding it in their hands and not one who did not have a big grin on their face after counting the 350 degrees in 15 seconds.
The disadvantages of the TS100
Yes, they are also available with this soldering iron. But it is already said: The disadvantages are negligible compared to the advantages:
There is no PSU included with the TS100. Therefore, when buying make sure that you also buy a power adapter.
The great strength of the piston is just that it can be operated on a Lipo battery. I would have been very happy to see an XT60 adapter in the pack. With the help of the XT60 cable, you can then solder independently of the socket.
Station The soldering iron has a thin Stifform and no feet to support, so a bracket is needed, so you do not touch if you want to put down the TS100.
Soldering tip remove only with Imbus
Here one could again something points if the soldering tip would be changeable without tools. Because even in the beautiful black cardboard packaging you get the piston only if you remove the soldering tip with an Imbus. But that’s really whining at the highest level now.
My experiences with the TS100
I’m a big fan of the TS 100 Digital Programmable Soldering Iron. I have not touched anybody since I own this one.
In addition, I do not even use the power supply – because, with our power supply, the connection cable is quite heavy – with the XT60 adapter cable and a 4S battery leads the soldering iron not only easier – I am also location independent. So far, I’ve done all the work on my 3 “racer with the TS
And to be able to solder something in the field is simply awesome. It is seldom needed, but if: Then the TS100 is the one who makes the difference between “Goes nothing, has to go home” and a nice flying day!
YES!!! Get the thing. You will not regret it.
The TS is available at Amazon and especially cheap at Banggood.
We have made our newly arrived DJI Mavic Air FPV suitable
The Mavic Air is probably the hottest camera drone currently, but we are actually not DJI aviators but FPV Racer pilots. And what do you want as an FPV pilot? Exactly: The thing from the first-person perspective fly, but do not stop ‘staring at the phone’.
So we built a DJI Mavic Air FPV.
Can you fly the Mavic Air FPV?
Joah, you can go. But it takes a lot of getting used to. With the goggles you have a wide-angle image for FPV, which does not necessarily match the flight characteristics of the DJI. But you can definitely steer well from the first person perspective and above all have no time delays as on the phone. So with a bit of practice, that should allow you to fly a bit of proximity with the Mavic AIR.
What we used to build the DJI Mavic Air FPV
Felix has just designed a 3D part, which keeps the AIO FPV Cam. Originally, it had side panels when we got it from the 3D printer, but unfortunately, they did not quite fit under the propellers. So sawed off and done quite provisionally with tape to the Mavic. Because that was surprisingly good, but just with the back of the tape n 1S battery on it and our “Jenny Air FPV” was ready =)
Quadmovr (yes, it is written in this way and not Quadmover) from Germany is probably the best-known LOS pilot in the racing drones area. One of my favorite videos comes from him (especially because of the sound), you’ll find it on the homepage. His current Movr series arguably the fastest drone in the world, as he is also one of the busiest designers, pushing his builds to the limit.
Lately, he’s been focusing on one thing: Speed! With his Movr frames, he sets one record after another. To measure, he uses a telemetry unit mounted on the race quad which sends the data to his Taranis remote.
The fastest drone in the world
In the Miniquad area, it should thus hold the world record in terms of speed (as of March 2018): The Movr5r2 f80 flies an incredible 267 km / h with a 6S battery (which is 166 Mp / h in retard units).
Here is his record flight:
UPDATE: The DRL R3 Racers has even come to 288.6 km/h (179.3 Mp/h) with an outlandish 10S Lipo 80A ESC equipment. Wow. But Quadmovr still holds the 6S record.
Are 3 “racing drones the new premier class? (HGLRC XJB-145 shopping list)
Why are 3 “Racequads so interesting in Germany?
In Germany (and in some other countries) there is a magic number: 250g. Drones and quads over 250g are subject to the strictest conditions in Germany . Copters under a quarter of a kilo (and the HGLRC XJB-145 is one of them) are considered toys and it’s so much easier to fly legally.
Under 250g but strong enough for a GoPro
What makes the 3 “class but especially interesting: It is possible to assemble a 4S Racer here, which likes to fly its 130 Km / h or mount a GoPro Session and shoot in incredible quality.
Ok, admittedly – with a GoPro it is very close to the 250g, maybe you have to counter something with the battery. But it’s possible! What I’ll do: I’ll get a Möbius mini camera – the quality is not as high as in the GoPro session, but it is much easier. So I have all options open.
The best 3″ racing drone
There are 2 hot contenders for the title “The Best 3 Inch Racing Drone”. After the HGLRC XJB-145 came out the Diatone GT M3 , which flies an incredible 150 Km / h . A <250g drone !!! Which is better now I believe in the eye of the beholder. The 3 “class is definitely the most interesting class for Germany and other regulated countries and the two models are simply UNBELIEVABLE in terms of performance, quality, and speed.
Shopping list for the HGLRC XJB-145
But I chose the XJB 145mm. Here is my shopping recommendation:
DRL Racer 3 | The Quad from the Drone Racing League
Where can you buy the DRL Racer 3?
Now you have to be very strong: the DRL R3 is not available for purchase. Also not in the DRL shop. But there are alternatives. Which, you can read below.
What is the Drone Racing League (DRL)?
The DRL is a racing series for racing drones. The format was developed especially for television and is not uncontroversial in the scene, but visually a feast for the eyes. Take a look at it here:
What is special about the DRL Racer 3
The DRL Racer 3 (short DRL R3) is the official racequad for the league which is flown by all pilots to create equal opportunities. The DRL Quad is an in-house development of DRL, although of course it is largely based on freely available parts, the most striking thing about the DRL race drone is probably the polycarbonate plastic case with the LEDs at first sight. I think the whole thing looks very cool through the shell and especially the cover for the camera.
Due to the additional technology and the shell, it is relatively heavy for a racing quadrocopter of this size (it is a 6 “, not 5”): It weighs about one kilogram. Nevertheless, its flight characteristics are praised by most pilots and through the 5S Power it still has enough punch: The ratio of power to weight (thrust-to-weight ratio) is acceptable 7: 1 (the agile racing drones have 10-15: 1) ,
DRL Racer 3 specification
Waterproof (DRL R3 Polycarbon Canopy)
Frame: DRL R3 Custom TrueX
Battery: Pulse 1800mAh 5S
PDB: Custom (DRL R3 PDB)
ESC: Rotorgeeks 20A RG20 Plus
Engine: BrotherhobbyT2 2206 1800kV
Propeller: HQProps 6x4x4
Receiver: TBS Crossfire V2 Micro
Antenna: Lumenier AXII (LHCP)
FPV Cam: Rotorgeeks HS1177 with 2.5mm GoPro Lens
Cam: GoPro Session 5
Are there alternatives to the DRL Racer 3
Of course! More importantly, what’s your skill level? As a total beginner, the R3 would not really bring you much – flying such a part takes some practice on the simulator before you can even hold such a racer in the air. (That’s just a racer and not a DJI drone!).
If you are still interested, I can recommend getting started with a complete set (for less than 100 €) with spark and glasses, with which you can even fly inside: QC 90 Kit. Read more about speed drones to get started here.
If you are already advanced or want to start with very big ambitions, the Diatone GT220S delivers incredible performance for less than 300 Euros (but do not forget the rest like glasses, spark, batteries etc.).
Is there then somewhere to buy the old DRL Racer 2
Unfortunately, the DRL R2 is not available on the open market. Most likely, one can still research and rebuild the parts. But then I would rather advise rebuilding the Racer 3 with the parts list above or anyway use a separate combination.
Be informed as soon as there is the R3 to buy!
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360 degree “Inception Style” video on a FPV racing drone
CJ Davies has a Ph.D. in computer science, lives in England and he has a hobby: 360 ° filming. And he combines that with his second hobby, flying FPV drones. He just made incredible shots with a Mijia Mi Sphere camera and a drone:
CJ Davies on his 360 ° FPV video – from 6 GoPro Hero to Mijia Mi Sphere
[German translation can be found below!]
I’ve had an interest in 360 ° media for some years now, after doing a Ph.D. in Computer Science during the beginning of the current VR resurgence (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UsDRPjDwr8A) then working professionally as a 360° stills photographer (https://cjdavies.org/#360) for several years.
My first contact with 360 ° video was with clunky multi-camera solutions (think six GoPro Hero 4 Black in an expensive bespoke rig) that would take just hours to remove all the cameras, take the SD cards out & dump all the files onto the computer, then many more hours on expensive sewing software manually tweaking things to get a passable result.
360° solutions (usually twin-lens style) in the last few years, as the Ricoh Theta & the Samsung Gear 360, which boast much faster / simpler workflows, but I did not consider any of them worth buying (& I did try several hands-on) until Xiaomi came out with her Mijia Mi Sphere camera earlier this year.
The Xiaomi camera has the IMU built in, which allows the footage to remain level & pointing in the same direction even as the camera rotates or turns upside down the video as you’re watching it, plus it gets rid of a lot of vibration/shakes. Xiaomi camera is really engaging with the community via Facebook to address feedback, distribute beta software/firmware builds for testing, etc.
My first attempt puts it on a drone what the relative safety of my tarot 650 on a trip to Iceland
The footage was stitched via the Mijia Mi Sphere app for Android (and it’s actually almost hardware acceleration) and then I edited it in Adobe Premiere CC 2018 using the GoPro VR plugins that you can install for Premiere / After Effects by installing the GoPro Fusion Studio (even if you do not have a GoPro Fusion & cannot actually use the Fusion Studio software).
Let me know if you have any questions!
I’ve been interested in 360 ° for several years now, after doing my PhD at the beginning of the current VR upswing (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UsDRPjDwr8A) and then professionally as a 360 ° photographer for several years ( https://cjdavies.org/#360).
My first contact with 360° video was with chunky multi-camera solutions (six GoPro Hero 4 Black in an expensive custom-made rig). It took hours to remove all the cameras, remove the SD cards and copy all the files to the computer. Then many more hours to manually connect the images in an expensive stitching software, to arrive at a passable result.
A number of companies have released single-camera solutions for 360 ° in recent years (usually double lenses), such as the Ricoh Theta and Samsung Gear 360, which offer much faster and easier workflows. But I did not find any of them worth buying (though I had them in my hand) until Xiaomi came out with the Mijia Mi Sphere camera earlier this year.
The Xiaomi camera was (I think) the first to have an IMU installed that allows the footage to stay in the same orientation, even when the camera is spinning or turned upside down, and the video has much less vibration /Shaking. The quality of stitching with the Xiaomi camera is also very good and Xiaomi are really committed to sharing feedback with the Facebook community, distributing beta software/firmware builds for testing, etc.
My first attempt to attach the camera to a drone was on a trip to Iceland in the relative safety of my Tarot 650:
[Pictures see above]
Putting the camera on a 6 “FPV quad was much riskier, but I think the material was definitely worth it
The footage was made via the Mijia Mi Sphere app for Android (believe it or not, it’s really fast with hardware acceleration!), And then I edited it in Adobe Premiere CC 2018 with the GoPro VR plugins, which it did for Premiere / After Effects installs by installing GoPro Fusion Studio (even if you do not have GoPro Fusion and can not use Fusion Studio software).