Drones have recently become very common to most people, as well as affordable for anyone interested to own one. With just some few bucks you can visit some few online stores and search for the drone of your choice. The issue is that most people are still not well-informed about drones, information like; what they can do, how high can a drone fly, how to effectively use them, and so on, are still not well answered in full.
We already have thousands of drones flying in the sky; some people are enjoying this experience, while others are still learning how to use them effectively. Reading this article will provide all the important information you need concerning drones, more importantly, it will answer the question of how high a drone fly can.
What is a drone?
You can easily define a drone as a remote-controlled aerial vehicle. Quadcopters are the most common drones we have in the market today. The name quadcopters simply mean that they’re made with 4 propellers. While drones began using a radio transmitter system, recent developers have made it possible to have drones controlled via mobile phone Wi-Fi.
Most common uses of drones
Although there are lots of reasons to flying a drone, the common uses of drones today are; aerial photography and videography. Before the innovation of drones, most of the aerial shots had to be taken using planes or helicopters. Drones have become a cheap replacement for these kinds of shots, with easy control and low cost.
Drones have a very lightweight, making them more stable than a cameraman using a helicopter. Some footage might prove difficult to reach using traditional aerial photography, but drones are designed with great portability to reach different angles.
Other uses of drones apart from photography include; building roof inspection, mapping, and project site monitoring. Some drones are designed for recreational fliers who enjoy pointing them up in the sky.
How high can a drone fly?
The height of which a drone can fly primarily depends on the model of the drone itself. But the highest height which is recorded so far is 11,000 feet, the drone that flew to this height was DJI phantom 2. Not only did this drone break the record, but it also broke the law.
It is illegal to fly beyond certain heights depending on the law governing the country; we shall see more of the rules to keep in mind when flying your drone. The limitation is kept for the safety of the people since if the drone gets out of control and fall, it could cause serious damage at this height.
How high can a drone fly legally?
It doesn’t mean just because your drone can reach high altitudes, you can simply fly to that altitude. There is a limitation of the heights you can go depending on the country you live in. In the US for instance, you’re not allowed to exceed the height of 400 feet, whereas in Europe it goes up to 500 feet. You can check with your country to find out the limit set, so that you may not fall into trouble when having fun with your drone.
Here are a few more rules that you should always keep in mind when using your drone
1. Maintain the allowed height
We have already discussed concerning the height, but I will still keep it on top of the list just to insist on how important it is.
2. Maintain your visual line of sight
Make sure that you’re always in visual contact with your drone, don’t get carried away with your screen, or solely rely on visual assisted aides like telescopes and binoculars. It is also important to consider the kind of weather you have before flying your drone, it’s dangerous to lose your drone in the fog. So limit your drone to your line of sight.
3. Flying a drone over people is wrong
Some of the best location people could wish to fly their drones includes beach shores, but unless all the people are okay with it, you’re not permitted to do that. It doesn’t necessarily need to be many people, even if it’s a single person, you can’t just fly your drones over them without their consent. Use sound judgment before flying your drone to make sure that you don’t disturb others with your fun, stay away from; public events, community events, stadiums, and other groups of this kind.
4. Follow your community guidelines when flying your drone
Local towns or cities have their own regulations set concerning drones, it is important to check with your local authority to find out these rules. When you have known the rules, do your part by abiding by them when flying your drone. If you can’t find these rules then check out the rules laid out by the country’s aviation.
5. When flying near an airport, notify the airport authority
Most people especially drone fliers are aware of the law that flying within 5 miles of an airport is not allowed. But this is not correct, as the FFA have stated that when drone pilots wish to fly within 5 miles, they have to notify the airport authority before doing so. Therefore, for those who had certain cool locations in mind within these miles, you can still fly but do it while observing this rule.
6. Don’t fly drones in the dark
In addition to the rule of flying your drone only in the visual site, for the same reason you’re not allowed to fly your drone in the dark. 30 minutes before official sunset, and 30 minutes before official sunrise is considered to be dark already. It is important to abide by these simple rules if you need to enjoy your flying experience.
Tips to guide you fly at high altitudes
Flying in high altitudes is not simply done by mashing up the throttle to go higher; there are lots of factors to observe when doing this. It doesn’t matter the height your drone model can achieve, strong winds can limit how far you can fly. You should always know that as you go higher winds become stronger, sometimes much stronger than the rotorcraft is able to handle.
As your drone goes higher, the air gets thinner which will affect the rotors to work efficiently. Another issue is the temperature swing, the higher you go temperature begins to drop rapidly. The temperature drop will have effects on the Lithium batteries that are used by the drone. Simply put that, there are lots of factors in the air determined to pull you back down. So apart from the air itself, your drone also should have well-designed features to help you fly high altitudes.
Another factor that most people confuse when referring to how high their drones can go, is the difference between altitude above the sea level, and altitude above the ground level. You will find drones that can achieve high height above the sea level, but not the same when it comes above the ground level. In most cases, the number of feet the drone can go is usually recorded with respect to the height above the ground level, but in some cases, it’s not clear what it is meant to represent.
Another tip to also keep in mind while flying your drone is that higher altitudes are not always safe. Chances of something going wrong usually increases the higher you go, you could come across strong winds that could affect your radio link, or even lose your drone. In most cases, people fly in high altitudes with specific objectives in mind such as; filming or taking specific pictures. But people are always fascinated to try and see, if you do so, do it knowing that you could lose your drone.
Note that; in order to go beyond certain heights, you have to also remove the limiting software. This is usually done by hacking the drone, which could also make your warranty void. You have to know this before trying to do it. The achievable and acceptable height is pretty much cool to have a great experience. You don’t need to break rules, and possibly lose your drone with a single mistake.
How High Can a Drone Fly Summary
The biggest trick that people have noticed when they’re searching for drones that could fly higher than others, is that manufacturers also follow the FFA specifications in making their drones.
Although in some countries flying high heights is not prohibited, most of the manufacturers have limited their drones to meet the US government laws. I hope in the future this could change by letting people take the responsibility to obey the law by themselves.
Hopefully, this article has answered most of the questions you had before on how to use your drone perfectly. Not only that but it has also deeply answered the question of how high the drone can fly, and other important tips to help you enjoy your experience. Remember to always abide with the regulations, and respect people’s privacy when flying your drone. I wish you a great flying experience.