Pre-Flight Checks, For All Categories Drones


The inspections carried out as per the maintenance schedule before the flight is named as pre-flight checks. Before operation, any type of unmanned aerial vehicle require internal and external fast checkup for safe operation. These checkups do not include either dismantling of panels or removal of components for checking purpose. It is also called pre-arm safety checks, which is done within 5-10 min before flights.


Heavy Weight U.A.Vs:

  • All radio equipment is secured in the model and protected against engine vibration.
  • Push rods, ball links clevises and other fittings are secure.
  • All controls are effective, check especially for binding links or slowing of servos.
  • Engine is mounted securely and propeller has no cracks or damage.
  • Wings are firmly mounted and any bracing wires secure.
  • There are no loose or missing nuts and bolts.
  • All hinged flying surfaces secure.
  • CG is in right position.
  • Critical structure is of adequate strength with no cracks or significant warps.
  • The radio and switch free of fuel and oil.
  • Check the cloud cap camera rotation and lenses.


Electrically Powered Micro & Mini U.A.V:

  • Assemble air frame (wings, propeller, etc.).
  • Start computer and open G.C.S software.
  • If using telemetry, connect ground station modem to computer’s USB port.
  • Turn on RC transmitter, set mode channel(s) to Manual, and SET THROTTLE POSITION TO IDLE.
  • Make sure UAV is level and motionless.
  • Install battery in UAV and connect, taking care not to disturb UAV or unlevel it.
  • In G.C.S software, select correct port ID and baud rate for telemetry modem, and hit “Connect” button. Wait for APM to switch from Disarmed to Armed.
  • Check M.A.V Link connectivity.
  • Check for 3D Fix on GPS (map display should show current location)
  • Check that battery voltage, compass heading, packet percentage, and GPS time-of-day are correct in G.C.S software.
  • Current altitude display in screen should change to zero.
  • In G.C.S software, load or create flight plan. Check that all altitude values are nonzero and sufficiently high to clear any terrain or obstacles in flight path. Press “Write WPs” to transfer flight plan to UAV.
  • In G.C.S software, check that battery mAh value is correct.
  • In G.C.S software, Advanced Parameters section, check that ALT_HOLD_RTL value is nonzero and sufficiently high to clear ground-based obstacles over flight path. NOTE THAT THIS PARAMETER VALUE IS IN CENTIMETERS
  • Check that all flight controls surfaces have appropriate neutrals, and that they move in correct direction when RC transmitter sticks are moved, first in Manual mode, then in FBW
  • Lift UAV from ground or holder and check that Center of Gravity is OK.
  • Set mode to FBW. Move UAV in both pitch and roll axes, and check that ailerons, rudder, and elevator move in appropriate direction to return UAV to level flight.
  • Install propeller if not already installed, and check that motor turns in correct direction when throttle is applied
  • Disconnect and re-connect G.C.S software to flight controller to reset flight log (eliminates long initial period of inactivity when later reviewing flight logs). Check that all parameters return to appropriate levels. Press “Set Home Alt” button again if necessary.
  • If images from camera are to be geo-tagged from the flight log, take a photo of the G.C.S software (at least the HUD portion) such that the GPS time can be clearly read in the image. This will allow the offset between the camera’s clock and the GPS clock to be determined easily.
  • Set script parameters in camera and install camera into UAV.
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