Earlier this month we watched on as the European Drone Summit brought us a huge amount of innovation and a selection of products that we’re excited to write about. The biggest and possibly most noteworthy of the summit comes from DJI – surprisingly – with the launch of the Phantom 4 RTK in Frankfurt. Of course, those of us in the know knew that the new Phantom was coming and it makes sense for the release to fall in line with the event. With their own Airworks event following the summit – it’s no surprise that hype has been created to increase publicity for their own event – but with a new drone announcement is exciting nevertheless.
What’s comes with the Phantom 4 RTK
DJI has once again shown that commercial drone applications can be brought to the market in smaller packages and at lower price points than what we first thought – and for less than the competitors. The RTK is expected to retail for €5,700 and will come included with the drone itself, remote controller, two intelligent flight batteries, one remote controller intelligent battery, charger hubs for both battery types, power adapter, power cable, four propeller pairs and accessories. So you’re definitely getting a fair bit in the box for your money.
Centimeter level positioning system
One of the most impressive features of the RTK module is the real-time, centimeter-level positioning data for unrivalled accuracy within images. There’s also a GNSS module, perfect for maintaining flight stability in poorer signalled regions – whether that’s dense cities, heavy wooded areas or congested or tricky geometries. Combine both the RTK receiver and the GNSS module and you’ve got a winning package for optimised flight, safety and accuracy for complex surveying, mapping and inspection workflows. You can also fit the Phantom 4 RTK to any workflow with the ability of connection to the positioning system to the D-RTK Mobile Station, NTRIP with the use of a 4G dongle or WiFi hotspot.
Gather accurate data with timesync
Taking full advantage of the 4 RTK’s phenomenal positioning system, the TimeSync system was created so you’re continually aligning the flight controller, camera and RTX module. Timesync makes sure that each and every photo taken uses the most accurate metadata and will actually fix the positioning data to the center of the CMOS. That means that you’ll be getting optimised results from photogrammetry while allowing the image to use centimeter-level positioning data.
Purpose-built flight planning application
A brand new GS RTK app allows you as the pilot to intelligent control the all new Phantom 4 RTK with two sparkly new planning modes. Choose between photogrammetry and waypoint flight alongside the expected, traditional flight modes offered by DJI. Planning modes allow you to select a drone’s flight path with the adjustment of the overlap rate, altitude, speed, camera parameters and more – meaning an automated mapping or inspection workflow – we’ll take that all day long. The GS RTK app has been completely built from the ground up with its pilots in mind and comes with a range of features specific to mapping and inspection workflow. With an implemented direct loading of KML area files for ‘in-office’ flight planning and a new shutter priority mode – meaning that your exposure is consistent across all areas of shooting. There’s even a super strong wind alarm to warn you of any particularly adverse conditions.