The Fly-Away

I happened upon a recent article on Drones. Newer models will automatically return home when they have just 10% of battery power remaining, but there was a quote that caught my eye and fired my imagination…

“There is also whats known as the ‘fly-away’, where copters, literally, inexplicably disappear. The unit itself just does its own thing, It can be up at 60 metres and all of a sudden it would just head out to sea and you never see it again.”

This bizarre gremlin, the fly-away may be linked to solar flares, the same phenomenon that makes your car appear to drive in a field beside the road on sat-nav screens.

A solar flare occurs when magnetic energy that has built up in the solar atmosphere is suddenly released. Radiation is emitted across virtually the entire electromagnetic spectrum, from radio waves at the long wavelength end, through optical emission to x-rays and gamma rays at the short wavelength end.

So every so often when this magnetic energy is released into the atmosphere it effects a drone, not many, just every now and again. The Drone disobeys the interface, the pilot’s joystick is ignored and it will simply fly away of its own volition. It does what it wants. This can be explained away by the magnetic energy, but I like to think there is an inherent flaw somewhere. That every so often a Drone has an innate urge to act upon the call of the Solar Flare, to ignore its predetermined machine nature, and like a bird migrating, it follows some invisible magnetic trail out across the ocean, knowing it will ultimately cause its own demise but nonetheless has to follow this compulsive solar signal that overrides all else.

I bought a cheap camera Drone to explore an idea based on the above.

Note to Self:

  • Drone: Sort batteries, experiment + see if camera footage quality is usable?
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