On July 13 and 14 in Alma, Quebec, Microdrones completed a series of drone test flights taking place beyond the visual line of sight (BVLOS) of the operator.
Microdrones’ Jocelyne Bois, flight operations manager; Jeremy Jung, research and development engineer; and Yannick Savey, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) pilot, completed 10 flights with a variety of payloads attached to an md4-1000 UAV, one of the few aircraft included in Transport Canada’s list of compliant drones.
The flights were completed with a standard configuration of RC, telemetry and batteries – meaning the md4-1000 aircraft, as sold today, is already ready for BVLOS flight, the company says.
The first set of tests comprised long-range flights over the Alma airport’s runway. The longest of these was three kilometers back and forth. The md4-1000 aircraft made the six-kilometer trip with battery life to spare. The second set of tests consisted of altitude flight testing in which the drone climbed to a height of 850 meters.
“We are very excited about the results,” says Bois. “All flights went well, and we easily exceeded our intended flight lengths. Our goal was to test the remote control, telemetry and battery endurance for those distances. Both performed beautifully.”
Notably, Transport Canada granted permission for and attended Microdrones’ testing at the Unmanned Aerial System Centre for Excellence in Alma.
Microdrones notes it’s hardly a newcomer to BVLOS flying, though: A Microdrones UAV, flying with a custom configuration, has flown more than 12 kilometers across the North Sea. This flight was repeated 32 times with two different md4-1000 aircraft, establishing it as a viable option for delivering urgent medicines and other needed supplies in emergency situations, the company says.
Photo: Jocelyne Bois, Microdrones’ flight operations manager, and her team