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Klim Gromov
Klim Gromov

Drone Racer

First Person View, or FPV, drone racing is a sport where participants control "drones" (typically small radio-controlled aircraft or quadcopters), equipped with cameras while wearing head-mounted displays showing the live stream camera feed. Similar to full-size air racing, the goal is to complete a course as quickly as possible. Drone racing began in Germany in 2011 with a number of amateur pilots getting together for semi-organized races in Karlsruhe.[1]

Drone Racer

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FPV (first person view) flying means that pilots only see what the drone sees. This is accomplished by live streaming footage from a camera mounted on the nose of the drone. The image is transmitted as analog video (typically 2.4 GHz or 5.8 GHz frequency, 1.3 GHz for distant transmission) to goggles or monitor worn by the pilot. The remote control, drone, and goggles are all connected via radio and must transmit with sufficient speed and reliability to allow effective control. FPV goggles on the market range from $40 to $800, with the more expensive goggles offering more and better features. Some of these features include receiver diversity, digital HD video, head tracking, multiple frequency settings, band settings and DVR (digital video recorder) recording functionality. Digital video systems offer much better image quality and are now becoming much more commonplace.[2]

While the pilot always requires goggles, some drone racing organizations insist they should also be used among spectators alike by simply switching the frequency to the channel of the racer one wants to watch,[3] although this can only be done with drones with analog video transmission, as digital transmission is usually a one-to-one pairing to the pilot. Any drone could be used to race, however competitive FPV racing leagues require drones to meet certain standards.

DR1 Racing, utilizes an open spec class format that relies on each team in the series to supply their own drones, goggles and gear. Recently they added the Pro Class racing drone, which is currently the largest competitive drone racing format in the world.[6]

Racing drones are designed for speed and agility, as opposed to a photography/video drones which are focused more on hovering and stable filming.[7] A photography quadcopter design will typically have four motors configured in an X-pattern, all equally spaced apart. A racing model will typically have its four motors configured in an H-pattern configured to thrust the drone forward, not up. Another specific characteristic of drone racing is the number of propeller's blades. 3-blade or 4-blade (instead of 2-blade) propellers have a shorter diameter allowing for a smaller frame with increased acceleration and maneuverability capabilities. Because of their light weight and electric motors with large amounts of torque, drones can accelerate and maneuver with great speed and agility. This makes for very sensitive controls and requires a pilot with quick reaction times and a steady hand. Racing drones also have their cameras situated at the front of the drone, since the drone always flies forwards, and the pilot needs to be able to navigate. Photography drones usually have high quality cameras situated underneath the drone body with a gimbal, which allows the drone film from above while hovering.

Other smaller and less established leagues have found it difficult to find funding. At events like the one held at the California State Fair, funding comes from the state and from ticket sales at the event. Along with the difficulties of finding funding, it creates problems of finding good venues that create a challenge for the pilots and also have key turns and straightaways adding to the exhilaration of these events. US Army veteran Brett Velicovich has been involved in the launch of drone racing at the Dew Tour.[47] Outside of DRL, and DR1 which has Mountain Dew as a sponsor, most smaller events are sponsored by FPV manufacturers such as Fat Shark, ImmersionRC[48] and HobbyKing,[49] DYS, T-Motor, EMAX,[50] Team Black Sheep (TBS).[51]

Drone racing can be also simulated on computers via drone flight simulators such as Velocidrone, Liftoff, neXt, DRL Simulator, etc. Players can use game controllers such as an Xbox or PlayStation controller; however, some radio controllers support plug and play as well. The use of a radio transmitter is preferred among professional pilots due to its superior precision.

Using as much throttle as possible, Pedro Caceres, a Northeastern mechanical engineering major, races drones through gates and across finish lines at speeds of 100-plus mph. Caceres won the collegiate championship in April. At first it can make you dizzy and nauseous, he says, but "once you practice for a bit, it goes away and you become one with the drone."

Turner is one of many who has gotten into the sport of drone racing. While it remains a relatively new sport forming around 2011, it has a large, dedicated fan base. In its most recent season, the sport attracted audiences across six continents, broadcasting to over 250 million households.

Like all good champion athletes, Turner then diversified starting a business alongside his racing career. This business involves selling drone parts for fellow hobbyists and professionals alongside an aerospace engineer who comes from Boeing.

While most drones make use of a screen to show you what they see, the kind of drones used in racing take things a step further. Known as First Person View (FPV) drones, a racing drone requires you to strap on a headset, fully immersing yourself in its view.

These are affordable games that you can get for your console or computer. By doing this first, you can not only get some practice in to save you from an expensive drone crash, but also help you decide if this is a hobby for you.

Unlike most drones these days that can practically fly themselves, FPV types offer no safety features or assists, you are in complete control which both gives you a lot of freedom and makes your life a whole lot more difficult with a steep learning curve.

MultiGP is the largest drone racing league & fpv community in the world. A global, professional, drone racing league with hundreds of chapters internationally including locations such as Australia, Asia, South Africa and Europe, and United States of course.

MultiGP Chapters are groups of pilots in a defined region or city that organize frequent drone racing events to further their skills, competition and progression of our sport.Anyone can start their own Chapter and immediately enjoy its benefits:

MultiGP is the largest professional drone racing league in the world. Because of this, MultiGP hosts frequent competitive gatherings and casual events within its extensive network. The Organization currently has over 30,000 registered pilots in addition to 500 active chapters worldwide. MultiGP nurtures its Chapters by providing tools, guidance and community support. Due to this structure drone racing is fun, organized and rewarding for pilots, Chapter Organizers and spectators.

You should also plug into the drone racing community. Look for local racing events in your area and join a drone racing league. Attending events as a spectator can help you learn more about the sport and may give you an opportunity to network with or seek mentorship from an experienced racing pilot.

Within the carbon fiber frame, this mini racing drone has a clean overlook and well-protected components. Not like other mini drones, EMAX Hawk Pro has an attached mushroom antenna to provide a better signal.

This is an excellent drone to start off with on your FPV racing journey. Before purchasing, know that this quad is BNF (bind and fly), meaning that you will need to purchase a remote controller separately before it is fully RTF (ready to fly).

Plus, the ARRIS FPV mini camera is specially designed for FPV. This camera performs well in both bright and dark conditions with 1200 TVL high-quality images. The camera angle on the drone is also adjustable.

If you are into racing and freestyle aerobatic flying, this may be for you. The airframe design is modern, simple, lightweight fuselage but with a rugged crash structure. This ready-to-fly racing drone comes with high-performance brushless motors, night vision, and a 40c 4S LiPo battery, to give you that adrenaline rush!

The DJI FPV drone has created an entry point for FPV flying. It has also shaken up the more traditional offerings from DJI by allowing those who have never flown FPV before to dive right in without needing to build a custom drone or learn specialized piloting skills. Its hybrid design makes it great for both cinematic flying or racing. With a 4K Super-Wide camera and RockSteady Stabilization, action-packed footage has never looked so good.

In 2006, the FAA officially issued the first ever commercial drone permit and over the years, flying recreational drones has become increasingly popular. Flying drones can be an enjoyable hobby, part of a lucrative business, and can even assist in day-to-day work, but there has also been a rise over the years in racing them for sport. And sometimes this sport can lead to cash prizes, brand deals, and accolades in the drone racing space.

The sport of drone racing is judged by how fast pilots can navigate through a course of obstacles. Fastest wins. In big events, the livestreams from the drones are broadcast onto screens around the course (and sometimes around the world) for spectators to watch and enjoy.

Using quadcopters, drone racers navigate round three-dimensional courses. Different drone racing organizations have different types of obstacles that racers have to navigate. Competitions are held in stadiums across the world with obstacles such as gates, ladders, hurdles in all ranges of elevations and difficulties.

Of late though, there has been a rise in esports drone racing, meaning pilots navigate around virtual courses. For example, the Drone Racing League World Championship includes tracks such as the Biosphere SIM, Campground SIM, US Air Force Boneyard SIM, and Allianz Riviera SIM, all virtual maps created in a true-to-life drone racing simulator. 041b061a72


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