DJI cargo drone set for worldwide release

When news broke that DJI were adding a delivery series to their inventory of unmanned aircraft systems, we went high and wide to bring you the story – even when at the time the drone was only available for the Chinese market and there were doubts over whether it was ever going to be available for a worldwide release in the foreseeable future.

That was in August last year; and what a difference a few short months makes.

Now, for a measly $42,000, you can order get your DJI FlyCart 30 cargo drone delivered into your business premises; and DJI will even throw in six more battery packs and an extra remote control for the price.

In our initial report, we did indicate that the FlyCart 30 is what the VoloDrone wanted to be; a miniature heavy lift cargo drones that moves 30kg cargo to places as far as 20km away. Early customers are using it in China to deliver solar panels in the mountains, carry tools and supplies to a remote construction site and shuttle goods to boats on the Yangtze River.

The drone is set to hit the worldwide market sometime in the first quarter of this year; and below is a summary of what it is all about, from the manufacturer’s mouth.

DJI, the world’s leader in civil drones and creative camera technology, today introduces DJI FlyCart 30 (FC30) to the global market. This delivery drone overcomes traditional transport challenges with its large payload capacity, long operation range, high reliability, and intelligent features. Now delivery, such as mountain transportation, offshore transportation, or emergency rescue transportation, can be performed with more efficiency and flexibility.

“From agriculture to construction management and surveying, DJI’s industrial-grade drones have transformed industries by improving safety for workers and productivity for businesses,” said   Christina Zhang, Senior Director of Corporate Strategy at DJI. “We are optimistic that FlyCart 30 will become a trusted solution for aerial delivery, solving complex terrain and terminal transportation problems efficiently, economically, and most importantly, safely from the air.”

Long-range heavy payload capacity

FC30 adopts a coaxial four-axis, eight-blade, multi-rotor configuration with carbon fibre propellers and can achieve a 20 m/s maximum flight speed. When in its dual-battery configuration, it can carry a 30kg payload sixteen kilometres. In its emergency single-battery configuration, the payload capacity increases to 40kg for a distance of eight kilometres. DJI O3 transmission maintains a stable connection between the drone and remote controllers up to 20km away. Dual Operator mode allows control to be transferred between two pilots in different locations with a single click.

Ready for multiple environmental scenario

FC30 maximizes product performance and safety in extreme weather and terrain. FC30 has IP55 protection, can operate in temperatures ranging from -20° to 45° C (-4° to 122° F), and can fly in winds up to twelve metres per second. The standard propellers are optimized for altitudes from 0-6,000 m and support flight up to 3,000m with a 30kg payload.

Self-heating batteries maintain optimal performance even in low temperatures.

Increased operational safety

FC30’s built-in redundancies and intelligent safety features help ensure safety throughout operation. Before take-off, it evaluates flight route viability based on environmental conditions, and ensures pre-take-off safety through audio-visual prompts and by delaying propeller launch.

During flight, the dual active phased array radar and binocular vision systems enable all-weather multidirectional intelligent obstacle sensing, day or night. The built-in ADS-B signal receiver gives timely warning of nearby crewed aircraft. In emergencies, an integrated parachute can deploy at low attitudes and land the drone stably, protecting both people and property.

Flexible configurations for different transportation scenarios

FC30 folds down for easy transport in a standard-sized vehicle. In Cargo mode, payloads are placed in a 70-litre case that features weight and centre-of-gravity sensors to improve balance and safety. In Winch mode, payloads are carried by a winch crane for delivery to areas without convenient landing sites.

The winch system includes a 20m cable that can manually or automatically retract at 0.8m/s and can carry 40kg. AR Projection assists accurate placement of goods by indicating the projected landing point. During flight, FC30 can intelligently adjust its flight attitude, automatically reducing cargo swing.

A full software suite to make drone delivery easy

DJI DeliveryHub systematises aerial delivery with operation planning, status monitoring, centralized team resource management, and data collection and analysis. It also supports live viewing through the drone’s high resolution FPV gimbal camera.

DJI Pilot 2 powers manual flight, and displays real-time flight status, cargo status, and more for safe and efficient operation. In extreme weather or other abnormalities, DJI Pilot 2 alerts operators of risks and supports alternate landing site management.

DJI DeliveryHub and FC30 support integration with external cloud platforms or payloads, enabling adaptation to a wide range of industry-specific applications.


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