DJI Adds Airplane, Helicopter Detection to New Consumer Drones

Lloyd Doyle
May 25, 2019

DJI has just announced that it will be building aircraft detection into all of its consumer drones weighing over 250 grams starting in 2020. The Chinese tech company announced Wednesday that all DJI drones weighing more than 250 grams - which includes every one it now offers - released in 2020 onward will have built-in airplane and helicopter detectors. Key to the new feature will be AirSense, a technology that picks up on the ADS-B signals from planes and helicopters in the nearby vicinity.

DJI stressed that "there has never been a confirmed collision between a drone and an airplane" but said drones had struck low-flying helicopters "at least twice". Drone pilots will get an aircraft warning before they would be able to physically see or hear the airplane or helicopter.

In the past there have been (near) accidents with drones and planes more often. DJI AirSense will alert drone operators if it has detected a signal from an aircraft located potentially up to miles away. "DJI is the world's leader in commercial and civilian drone industry, accounting for over 70% of the drone market".

There are already plenty of safety-minded features built into DJI's drones, like obstacle avoidance, geofencing, altitude limits, and the ability to automatically return to the takeoff spot.

The addition of ADS-B is only part of DJI's new safety plans. "This led us to focus on AirSense as the next opportunity to make drones safer, and to embrace challenges of adding ADS-B receivers to consumer drone models that are already in development". Regardless, it's nice to finally see some improvements from DJI, and we hope this becomes the new standard for all drone companies. These rules, in part, are created to protect individuals from potentially catastrophic collisions between drones and helicopters. DJI has taken the first step towards this by now equipping all of their drones with ADS-B tracking so their drone operators will be aware of other aircraft equipped with ADS-B tracking technology. As a result, air traffic was stopped a number of times.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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