ALTA death spiral and crash

Discussion in 'ALTA' started by Adam Varadi, Nov 26, 2015.

  1. Dave King

    Dave King Well-Known Member

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    Thats great news. Does that mean you are getting a replacement for no extra cost?
     
  2. Adam Orens

    Adam Orens Member

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    :mad: How in the hell is a Graupner air module going to crash an ALTA? Its a standard shunt and its only on one of the 2 batteries. Is Freefly saying that this was a power dropout or brownout? When you had the crash, were you in a full power climb?
     
  3. Andreas Riem

    Andreas Riem Member

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    Lets wait for FF's final reply on this case. Meanwhile - relax, enjoy your glogg and unweld your anti-sparks form any DJI system. ;)
     
  4. Adam Varadi

    Adam Varadi Member

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    Yes, for no extra cost.
    They didn't say anything, still working on it.
     
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  5. Dejan Mugosa

    Dejan Mugosa Member

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    If you think our hammer is hobby grade baught parts : well m8 check again. And ofc after we released the hammer (with xxx hours off testing and changing motors, booms, props and all ) and after KW spent xxx amount of money on research it is easy to be smart and copy parts and do a home build. I still remember when we got questions abot what KV are the motors and what is hercules and what settings .... when we did not want to release that info. PPL were pissed at us.

    My grandmother who made it threw the 2 WW said. Everybody can be a General after the battle has been won!!!

    We lifted 8kg (camera and gimbal) which is 17 pounds on 6000 feet easy and we still do it on. If it was not for us there would be no x8 and U7 madness. Why the frame was not released. Mainly due to problems with customers and spare parts and then we would start on the freefly path (cinestar ---------------- alta) so we rather did RTF only. Maybe in next year we come up with a new thing to impress somebody.
     
  6. Paul Christopher Greene

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    Agreed Adam,

    Alta is simply not suitable for RED Epic Dragon or any gimbal / camera payloads of 15 pounds + as it requires more than 70% thrust to maintain hover leaving no room for motor, ESC, or electronics failure and recovery. This is a big reason I wish Freefly would release Synapse separately from Alta but they've clearly decided to leverage their FC development to sell RTF units instead. :-/

    If it makes you feel any better, we had a very expensive heavy lifter crash last year as well with A2 controller and I'm most eager to see who will step up to the plate and make an FC that is indeed bullet proof. (I know that's impossible but there's a LOT of room for improvement obviously).

    Why no-one has come up with a single, high powered high bandwidth, full duplex redundant wireless TX/RX system that muxes TX, FC, FIZ, gimbal control etc instead of using 6-8 different wireless subsystems that fight with each other I don't know. (R&D time and cost I'm sure).

    As well, shouldn't flight log data be transmitted remotely to a logging device like the FAA is getting ready to do (instead of black boxes) to avoid critical data log files from being damaged in the crash?

    I'm well aware that $100K in the air is quite an investment and risk and feel strongly that if FC and drone manufacturers don't figure out how to achieve much higher reliability it's going to damage the entire industry and stunt it's growth. I'd hoped Freefly would bring that reliability as DJI doesn't seem to up to the task but your crash indicates they're every bit as susceptible I'm afraid.

    Best of luck with the Hammer...let us know how ya like it.

    Thank you,


     
  7. Adam Varadi

    Adam Varadi Member

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    Just flew my Hammer X8 for 18 min, with Movi and Red, on 48% throttle... :)
     
  8. Adam Varadi

    Adam Varadi Member

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    I still think ALTA is a good machine, but not for us high end users. Soon I think everybody will understand this. There is nothing more important than to keep the surrounding people and the equipment on the copter safe!

    Will sell my ALTA since my Cinestar 8 is able to lift RED, and has 800+ flights in it, so I trust it. (It's going to be my backup)

    About the Hammer: I freaking LOVE it!!!
    Just flew 8 flights today... Just for fun! :)
     

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  9. Paul Christopher Greene

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    Dave,

    Very respectfully, suggesting less power / batt / weight might make Alta suitable for 15 pound gimbal / camera payload isn't realistic unless flight times measured in seconds instead of minutes is one's goal LOL. Alta simply wasn't designed for this kind of AUW and no drone hovering at 70%+ thrust has enough thrust to recover from *any* sort of failure (ESC, motor, electronics etc).

    Sorry to disagree, but after years of waiting for Synapse, I'm simply a bit disappointed both in the weight capacity of Alta as well, FF's decision to only sell Synapse in an Alta RTF unit.

    Back on topic, hopefully FF will respond with some detail as to what happened to Adams unit!

    Thank you kindly...


     
  10. Adam Varadi

    Adam Varadi Member

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    Dave!

    I think FF selling RTF kit isn't a problem, like Apple, they know the product top to bottom.
    The main problem is they are advertising for big cameras, even publishing pictures, and we all know it's simply not suitable for this.
    For small cameras I would say it's the best RTF copter out there. (ofc after we know why my copter crashed)
     
  11. Paul Christopher Greene

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    Yes, cameras are getting lighter and smaller - but just as quickly, higher resolution and dynamic range sensors and electronics push those cameras right back up in size and weight.

    Pilots like Adam and I provide best of class *heavy lifter* 6K - 8K aerial cinematography with the demands of being on set (constant waiting for "Action") so these issues will persist until addressed by FC and drone manufacturers.

    Thank you,

     
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  12. Adam Varadi

    Adam Varadi Member

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    Does anybody wants to buy my ALTA? :)
     
  13. Paul Christopher Greene

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    Man...I would really love to but can't live with the weight limitations :(

    I'm sure it will sell - perhaps for more than you paid for it given the recent price increase...

    Cheers,
     
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  14. Tabb Firchau

    Tabb Firchau Administrator
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    Here is the output of our investigation for everyone on the thread to see.
     

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  15. Adam Varadi

    Adam Varadi Member

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    Then please tell Bryan, that my previous email is not important. :)
     
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  16. Chris Jordan

    Chris Jordan Member

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    Ended up being Adam's installation of an aftermarket product, Thanks for full disclosure Tabb. Who else does this besides Red? LOVE this....
     
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  17. Adam Varadi

    Adam Varadi Member

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    Please read carefully, there is 2 possibility for the crash... And since a lot of people including me uses these accessories I doubt that this caused the crash.

    "2. A manufacturing or component defect of the PCBA caused a transient condition, which caused a brownout of the Synapse flight controller, which resulted in total loss of communication and control."

    Thanks Tabb and the FF team for the effort to figure out the problem, even that I'm not going to fly the ALTA it'S still a pretty amazing copter! (Wish you would sell the Synapse alone. :) )
     
  18. Chris Jordan

    Chris Jordan Member

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    Um, no offense Adam, but I did read carefully... and you left out the good stuff:

    "Modifications to the ALTA’s electrical system caused a transient voltage to be applied to the ALTA 5V system, which damaged the PCBA components and led to an inflight failure of the 5V system. This caused a low voltage ‘brownout’
    of the Synapse flight controller, which resulted in total loss of communication and control. A Graupner Electric Air Module telemetry system was installed and found to be wired in a manner which did not guarantee the manufacturer’s instructions. The module was connected inline to one of the negative battery leads and also had voltage monitoring connected to one of the positive battery leads. The power leads were fitted with XT90s connectors. A warning in the instructions indicates that the system should be connected using individual bullet connectors and that the negative terminal should always be connected first, or else damage to the telemetry module or receiver can occur. The configuration as received, with XT90s connectors, does not guarantee this sequence."

    "CONCLUSION
    The direct cause of the ALTA 930548 crash was a transient voltage or current spike which damaged several PCBA components, leading to Synapse brownout and complete loss of communication and control. The cause of the transient spike cannot be proven, but it is likely to have been due to modifications made to the ALTA electrical system or inherent manufacturing/component defects on an ALTA PCBA."

    All good man, I'm one who likes the whole picture. Glad you've got it all taken care of.
     
  19. MIke Magee

    MIke Magee Active Member

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    Extremely well done and communicated Tabb. Thank you for the effort and communication of this issue. We have all been waiting.

    Although it's clear there is no definitive proof one way or the other, you had me at "The configuration as-received, with the XT-90s connectors does not guarantee this sequence".

    No add-ons for me.
    -m

     
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