There are prizes now offered, such as the top prize of $250,000 (U.S.) at the World Drone Prix.
Drone racing is becoming a popular pastime for those hooked on adrenaline. Scott Simmie uncovers the appeal of drone racing and what you need in order to get started racing drones.
Drone racing is an electronic mainline involving a high-performance quadcopters flying around a set course. Simmie reveals that drone racing isn’t just about the prestige; there are prizes now offered, such as the top prize of $250,000 (U.S.) at the World Drone Prix. In San Diego, the U.S. Drone Nationals were held last year for those who wanted to seek at both fame and fortune. There was even an indoor competition that took place earlier this year in Ontario.
Simmie reports there are cameras that transmit video in real time that display inside goggles worn by the pilot called First-Person-View flying (FPV). Jason McEachern who builds his own quadcopters explains that ‘The real appeal is to fly, to see FPV and to see what the copter is seeing.’
Simmie describes, “Line-of-sight” as practising free flight that allows the drones to fly while controlling inputs based on the pilots sees. There are some pilots that use LCD screens installed inside boxes allowing them to switch between First-Person-View and Line of Sight with a “flick of their head.”
For novices interested in drone racing there are weekly events to work on their skills, such as flying a simple figure-eight pattern. There are weekly gatherings at some Toronto parks depending on the weather for those novices who would get crushed at an organised outdoor race. Simmie states, “Before diving in, most beginners start with cheaper toy-grade quads. You’re better off smashing something worth $60 at the cusp of the learning curve than something worth 10 times that amount.”
Simmie lists what you need to get started in drone racing: Drone, A good R/C radio, First-person-view goggles, Dough, and Stick time.
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