What is the most advanced drone on the market 2022?

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What is the most advanced drone on the market 2022?. Parrot ANAFI Ai – Review Of Features And Specs.

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The Parrot ANAFI Ai was designed in partnership with Verizon Skyward as the first 4G drone. With a radical design inspired by nature, the ANAFI Ai makes great promises about the quality and capacity of this drone aimed at the industry. Now available for pre-order.

What is the most advanced drone on the market 2022?

Introduction:

Parrot, the French drone maker, is looking to change game connectivity with the launch of the 4G connected drone. Currently available for pre-order, ANAFI Ai is reported to ship later this month. The marketing of Ai is aimed at the commercial sector. Photogrammetry, mapping, inspection, and surveying are what ANAFI Ai was designed for, and the price reflects that.

The pre-order price is $ 4,000. The ANAFI Ai IPX3 waterproof also has a unique camera system that features a suite of stereoscopic cameras on either side of the 48 MP main camera, enabling 360 ° obstacle detection. Parrot is using the open-source application, FreeFlight, for the side controls of the smartphone and Verizon 4G LTE for the main connectivity.


Feature Overview of the Parrot ANAFI Ai:

The Parrot ANAFI Ai ships with the following team of authorized resellers in late January (available for pre-order now for $ 4,000)

  • (1) Parrot ANAFI Ai drone
  • (1) Parrot Skycontroller 4
  • (1) Hardcase
  • (1) International USB-PD Fast Charger
  • (2) USB-C to USB-C cables for charging and pairing
  • (2) USB-C to Lightning cables for IOS device connection
  • (1) Extra set of propellers
  • (1) Gimbal protective cover
The inclusion of a hard case for the Parrot ANAFI Ai makes it a solid kit for any commercial use. Parrot has a long list of partners that are part of its ecosystem for ANAFI Ai: DroneLogbook, Skyward, PIX4D, UgCS, Rapid Imaging, Survae, Dronelink, High Lander, QGroundControl, Aloft, Measure, DroneSense, Textron Systems, and Hoverseen. to name a few. With an open invitation for others to partner with them as well.

4G Connectivity:

The Parrot ANAFI Ai has 4G connectivity that works with any phone that has a 4G compatible SIM card, which means that the drone could have an unlimited range. Like all aspects of this drone, there is an enterprise-grade option that includes many other features as well. Parrot partnered with Verizon and Skyward, a Verizon company, for enterprise-grade 4G LTE connectivity. Skyward is a commercial UAV software plan that uses the Verizon network and some of the leading drone software companies; such as Pix4D, InFlight, and DroneDeploy.

Packages are available from $25 per month to $998 per year, with custom business levels also available. When setting up this 4G package with a dedicated 4G company, the connectivity must be consistent; Anywhere someone with a Verizon cell phone plan has 4G LTE, the drone should, too. The service for the drone should be something that Verizon has taken into account and with the Skyward company managing it, they have experts available for drone-specific connectivity issues. In areas without 4G, you are left with the backup Wi-Fi connection built into the ANAFI Ai and the controller.

If you bought this drone for 4G connectivity and you can't use that main drone feature, it could severely limit your use case. The 4G radio, a Fibocom L860-GL 4G LTE module, used in ANAFI Ai supports more than 28 frequency bands in the 4G spectrum, that is, 98% of the frequencies used worldwide.

Regardless of the service provider, 4G connectivity provides connection capabilities unprecedented in drone history. Flying behind a building is no longer a dangerous feat with a signal loss warning waiting for you. Instead, your connection will be as reliable as it is right in front of you. Successful adoption of this technology could change the FAA's view of operations beyond line of sight (BVLoS), which would currently be illegal. Potentially even increasing the possibility of remote operations; that's remote like conducting an inspection or other operation from the office rather than the field.

Parrot's software for the drone automatically switches between Wi-Fi and 4G when necessary, measuring signal strength every 100 ms. Other automation for the 4G connection includes congestion monitoring on the 4G network where ANAFI Ai measures packet loss, latency, and tailors performance based on those metrics. Video streaming in 4G is fast too. The ANAFI Ai has a reported latency of 300 ms with video and controls secured via SRTP / DTLS.

The backup Wi-Fi connection system is pretty standard. Wi-Fi connectivity has a range of 9 km in FCC mode and 4 km in CE mode with Skycontroller 4. The transmission system adapts via four directional antennas, each with a gain of 2.5 dBi. While it is not the range you get from the 4G connection, it will still perform as well as any other drone on the market today.

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Image credit: dronezon.com

4K Camera and the Stereoscopic Camera Pair

As is the industry standard for drones in any sector; consumer, professional or commercial, a 4K camera is standard on the Parrot ANAFI Ai. The main 4K camera is a 48MP 1/2 inch CMOS camera. At 8000 x 6000 effective pixels, the images this drone can capture are fantastic, on paper. It also boasts a 14 EV dynamic range when set to HDR mode for vivid images in any light. ISO ranges from 50 to 6400, about the same as a small DLSR. The lens has a 24mm equivalent focal length with an aperture of f / 2.0. This makes for a fairly wide-angle view, but the low f-stop may decrease sharpness if fixed, the spec sheet doesn't specify this.

It features a 6x digital zoom, with a lossless image quality of 4x at 1080p and 2x at 4K UHD. It has a 6-axis gimbal that is both electronic and mechanical. The EIS electronic gimbal has 3 axes (pitch, roll, yaw) of control; with the mechanical gimbal also being 3 control axes. Videos can be recorded in standard, P-Log, or HDR mode in 4K UHD or 1080p. The frame rate is variable from 24/25/30 to 48/50/60 in 4K UHD or from 24/25/30 to 48/50/60/96/100/120 in 1080p. Only in HDR mode is the frame rate limited to 24/25/30 fps.

The autonomous flight of the Parrot ANAFI Ai uses a stereographic camera located on both sides of the main image sensor to avoid obstacles. The cameras have a horizontal field of view of 110º and a vertical field of view of 311º. These sensors are mounted on the mechanical gimbal, allowing them to rotate in the direction of flight. This means that the drone can see 360º around it with this sensor system. This system is also used in photogrammetry mode, allowing the Ai system to map the surroundings while using the main camera to record images.

Stereographic camera systems have previously been used for this purpose in both manually controlled and AI flights, but not many commercially available systems use them. A 2017 article used a pair of stereoscopic cameras to improve first-person view flight even on human-controlled drones. Using stereoscopic cameras is a well-researched technique, it just isn't used much in drones currently available with most stereoscopic vision systems available as add-on modules.

By using this technology, the ANAFI Ai is able to fly indoors where the cameras stereotype. These cameras obtain the necessary data for speed and orientation, measuring and mapping in real-time, and using the reflected light of the LEDs integrated with the stereo couple for low altitude flights. Crazy and cool. The level of technology included in the Parrot ANAFI Ai is staggering and hopefully, everything will work as designed.

Artificial Intelligence

With AI as part of the name, ANAFI Ai, I would have expected much more attention to the drone's AI characteristics. Instead, it is mentioned lightly throughout the spec and whitepaper. A good example Parrot mentions in the tech spec is the AI's ability to find the size, height, tilt, azimuth, and plumb of a tower antenna autonomously while conducting an inspection.

This optimizes the inspection process by eliminating a series of measurements that verify the physical calibration of a cell tower in a single process. This is used in combination with the PIX4Dinspect platform. AI is also used to calculate optimal flight platforms in autonomous photogrammetry mode.

The promo video demonstrates the feature by creating a bounding box for modeling and then telling the drone to capture that area. That's it, not the creation of flight paths by the user. With any of the autonomous flight functions, ANAFI Ai's AI uses stereoscopic cameras to create an environmental model of its surroundings. This helps the drone to know where the main objects are without visually seeing them.

This technology not only helps the drone avoid collisions, it also reduces the weight and the number of sensors onboard. By reducing the number of sensors required for autonomous flight, the drone has few points of failure. This simplicity in hardware and innovation in software make it a beautiful piece of technology. AI is fundamentally part of obstacle avoidance, target tracking, and various other flight modes in the ANAFI Ai.

The AI ​​uses 30 to 50 Mb / minute of data to update the images and metadata that the AI ​​elements feed into the machine learning system.

Cybersecurity and Programmability

"Cybersecurity by design" Parrot says it does not collect data except when the user allows it. They use a secure element WISekey (FIPS140-2 compliant and CC EAL5 +certified) to perform cryptographic operations to secure any ANAFI Ai communication that complies with GDPR standards. Parrot places a lot of importance on this drone feature, probably due to the business / industry-focused design of this drone. The French company Parrot is one of the US government-approved drone companies and I hope ANAFI Ai is also on the DOD Innovation Unit green list.

With a 4G connection, ANAFI Ai verifies carrier authentication through a 5-part pairing process and a strong 3-part authentication process when setting up the drone. The ANAFI Ai uses the TLS, DTLS, and SRTP protocols to transmit controls and video to and from the drone with the Skycontroller 4 remote control. Parrot even runs a bug bounty program to keep the drone at the forefront of safety practices.

Air SDK (Software Development Kit) allows you or your company to develop your software for ANAFI Ai without hindrance. The SDK allows access to all sensors, connectivity interfaces, and standalone functions when scheduling your missions or programs. Sensors (IMU, GPS, TOF), cameras, video streams, connectivity (via Wi-Fi, 4G or USB), depth maps, occupational grids, and generations of obstacle avoidance trajectories can be accessed. Built-in Linux processes can also be added.

Parrot has also included a Ground SDK for the ground control station functions. The GCS framework allows developers to create IOS or Android applications for controlling ANAFI Ai directly from the smartphone. Once again, with all the built-in functions available for use. The standard software for the ground control station is the open-source FreeFlight 7 application which is based on the OpenFlight BSD-3 license software.

This means that any additions that you want to include "stock" in your business facility can be standardized for everyone very simply. In addition to all this, Parrot also has Sphinx software available. Olympe is a framework for ANAFI Ai that enables you to run programs written in Python, the most popular programming language out there. You can write these Python programs for command and control, camera controls, automatic recording, metadata synchronization, or whatever else you may need. The Olympe frame can be attached to your real ANAFI Ai drone or a simulated one in Parrot's Sphinx.

Sphinx is Parrot's photorealistic 3D simulation software that allows operators to practice the controls on the drone without risking blocking the ANAFI Ai. Sphinx simulates the drone, firmware, sensors, and a realistic environment. It uses Unreal Engine for 3D graphics and Gazebo for robotic simulation. This is one of the best features that come with the drone. Like DJI's training simulator, Parrot has also reached this level. The ANAFI Ai Parrot also supports the MAVLink and GUTMA protocols. If you are already using a ground control station, such as QGroundControl, there is no need to change your current workflow. The possibilities are endless with the Parrot ANAFI Ai.

Skycontroller 4

With the ANAFI Ai is the Skycontroller 4, a completely redesigned controller just for the 4G capable drone. It has many high-end features that one would expect in a commercial drone, such as the micro-HDMI port for broadcast or FPV flights. Video streaming is decoded on the Skycontroller 4, allowing real-time streaming in 1080p, 30fps via the Micro-HDMI port.

Compatible with devices up to 8 inches, such as the iPad Mini, the controller connects to phones or tablets via USB-C or Lightning ports. Very similar to the way DJI controllers have short cables that don't get in the way. IP5X dust resistant, the Skycontroller 4 has a similar visual design to the ANAFI Ai it controls.

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Image credit: dronezon.com

Handling and Design

The Parrot ANAFI Ai features a unique design that optimizes airflow to cool the drone while being sealed enough for light rain operations. The IPX3 rating means it can withstand rain and winds of up to 50 km / h (31 mph). It has a top speed of 38 mph (17 ms) forward and 36 mph (16 m / s) laterally and rearward. Operationally, it can handle winds of up to 31 mph (14 ms), so the IPX3 rating is considerably high for the drone. Ascent speeds are less than 9 mph (4 m / s) of ascent and approximately 7 mph (3 m / s) of descent.

Handling should be excellent with 300 ° / s of control on the pitch and roll axes and 200 ° / s of control on yaw. A hands-on test would be great, but since this drone has yet to be launched, we only have promotional material and specs to continue. Aerodynamics are heavily emphasized in the ANAFI Ai, attributing much of the design to biomimetics, Parrot sought to test the design with a multitude of aerodynamic simulations.

The results show how the ANAFI Ai has better propulsion efficiency than traditional designs. The propellers feature a wavy leading edge giving them a 66% credit rating (a measure of power input versus power output) that rivals a larger propeller. It is even quieter! Hitting 71.5 dBSP at 1m, that's almost 5 dBSP quieter than the Skydio 2.

Size and Weight

The Parrot ANAFI Ai drone features folding arms to reduce the travel size of the drone. The folded size is 11.9 x 5.1 x 4.6 inches (304 x 130 x 118 mm) and 12.6 x 17.3 x 4.6 inches (320 x 440 x 118 mm) when ready to fly. It weighs 898g (1.98lb), about the average 1000g (2.2lb) for drones of this size. Of course, for enterprise-grade drones, this is on the smaller and lighter end of the spectrum. A direction that high-end business drones have taken, at least for drones that are not designed to carry a payload.

This is where the use case will make or break the Parrot ANAFI Ai. If some kind of payload of more than a few grams is needed, the ANAFI Ai is not your drone. Parrot has provided a wealth of information on the flight characteristics not only of the vehicle in general but also of each sensor and part individually. Specifications are even noted on inland flights. A feat most manufacturers advise against.

Battery

Designed specifically for ANAFI Ai, Parrot smart batteries have a capacity of 6800 mAh in a 3-cell LiPo pack. This gives ANAFI Ai an excellent 32 minute flight time. They charge through the built-in USB-C port, making charging easy. They also have a winter mode, which starts after 10 days of inactivity where the battery is discharged to 60% for storage.

Great for enterprise-level battery health because you no longer need someone to make sure the batteries are configured for storage. Parrot says that storage mode is good for keeping batteries stored for up to a year. The ANAFI Ai drone whitepaper has 3 pages dedicated to the battery only, but these are all important details for most.

Pricing

With a pre-order price of $ 4,000 for the Parrot ANAFI Ai, this drone would be at the higher end of the cost spectrum for a consumer drone. However, for the business or professional market, it is a bargain. Enterprise drones typically cost tens of thousands of dollars and ANAFI Ai is at the forefront of drone technology. It's hard to say if the drone is worth the cost before launch, but the Parrot ANAFI Ai is a very promising drone.

Conclusion:

The ANAFI Ai is a uniquely designed, enterprise-capable 4K drone from Parrot. Packed with cutting-edge Parrot research; ANAFI Ai offers AI-assisted technologies that enhance almost every feature of the drone. 4G connectivity provides unmatched drone connectivity enabling safe and effective BVLOS (beyond the line of sight) missions if allowed by the FAA.

While the unique camera system, a proven technology that is ready for widespread adoption and use, enables autonomous indoor flight with a 48 MP main camera providing a remarkably detailed image. The built-in standalone photogrammetry mode provides easy-to-use tools for sophisticated techniques in creating 3D models from images. Mapping, inspections, and surveying are also simplified with the ANAFI Ai drone and the PIX4D software library. While open-source software, such as the FreeFlight smartphone app, can also be used for ANAFI Ai control.

The drone is compatible with most major programs and protocols, which means you don't need to change your current workflow or programs to integrate ANAFI Ai into your fleet. Partnership with Verizon's Skyward enables superior 4G connectivity and reliability in use. The Parrot ANAFI Ai appears to be a safe drone to bet on in a pre-order, even at the price of $ 4,000. The ANAFI Ai appears to be a promising business drone from Parrot.
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