Parachute system for drone rescue to debut at Intergeo 2018

October 11, 2018  - By
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Photo: Drone Rescue

Photo: Drone Rescue

Drone Rescue will present its parachute systems DRS-5 and DRS-10 to the professional public for the first time at Intergeo, at stand 12.0B.112 in Hall 12, Oct. 16-18.

Parachute rescue system DRS-5 is designed for multicopters with a total weight of up to 8 kg. The system consists of a carbon cage in which the parachute is stored, as well as the associated electronics.

The electronics, including the sensors, monitor the flight status of a drone independent of the flight controller. A sophisticated algorithm merges this sensor data, through which an automatic crash detection can be realized, the company said. In an emergency, the pilot no longer needs to react and press an eject button. (Often, this is technically no longer possible anyway, such as with a failure of the radio link.)

Furthermore, the algorithm reacts faster than the pilot: the system ejects the parachute itself. All flight data and movements are recorded in a black box. In an emergency, these can be read out at the request of the customer and made available to insurance companies or authorities.

“Our goal is to ensure that even in an emergency beyond visual line of sight the drone can be safely intercepted. With our parachute system, that is always possible, due to the electronics that are completely separate and independent of the flight controller,” said Andreas Ploier, CEO and co-founder of Drone Rescue. “In addition, our system has the advantage that it manages completely without explosive, pyrotechnical solutions. Consequently we have a system that is considerably lighter, and functions even in a worst-case scenario.”

Photo: Drone Rescue

DRS10 system. (Photo: Drone Rescue)

The reliability of the system has been verified in extensive tests by Joanneum Aeronautics in Graz, Austria. In the framework of the tests, 100 flights were conducted during which the parachute system was ejected.

Half of the flights were conducted with a DJI F550 weighing 1.6 kg. The rest of the tests were performed with the 3.8 kg Vulture, which was developed by the FH Joanneum.

In both cases, the DRS-5 was attached to the side of the main body of the drone. In each of the tests the parachute was ejected at a height of 30 meters. Every test was documented.

Furthermore, the data were saved both in the flight controller as well as in the DRS-5 sensor system. After every 10th test, the parachute system was subjected to a visual examination and checked for possible damage or wear.

“After conclusion of the tests, it can be recorded that all 100 flights were successfully completed,” Ploier said. “In every test the multicopter landed safely. Thereby, the kinetic energy was significantly below the limit of 79 J. All requirements specified by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) were observed.”

Besides the DRS-5, the structurally identical parachute system DRS-10, which is designed for multicopters with a total weight between 5 and 20 kg, will also be presented at  Intergeo 2018. “The DRS-10 system functions exactly the same as the DRS-5 and falls back on the same components. These are constructed identically, just oriented for a higher payload. The functioning method of both parachute systems is identical,” Ploier said.

With flight tests for the DRS-5 completed in late summer, the first systems will be delivered to end customers in winter 2018.

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Tracy Cozzens has served as managing editor of GPS World magazine since 2006, and also is editor of GPS World’s sister website, Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.

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