The DJI M30 drone can fly in heavy rain and has its own robotic dock


You wouldn’t want to fly most drones in a heavy downpour, even most of DJI’s industrial-grade drones. Until today, DJI’s state of the art was the M300 RTK, a drone that took a barrage of water in marketing videos but where the fine print (PDF) says snow and heavy rains are not acceptable for flying. But DJI’s waterproofing and trust rating have improved – the new DJI M30 Enterprise, announced today, is explicitly ready for “heavy rain, high winds, high altitudes, even in freezing and snowy conditions. from -20°C to 50°C”. depending on the company.

The M30 has an IP55 rating against dust and water, compared to the IP45 rating of the M300 RTK. It’s not a higher water rating, technically.
Picture: DJI

The M30 is also more portable than virtually any of the company’s other industrial drones – small enough to fit in a large backpack or small wheeled suitcase – and with self-locking arms that click into place and can be folded by pressing a button instead of having to screw and unscrew each one as on the previous Matrice models. While the 8.2-pound drone still has the tubular arms common to industrial drones, the design is much closer to the Mavic that helped DJI dominate the foldable drone category.

The DJI M30 drone can fly in heavy rain and has its own robotic dock

Folded.
Picture:DJI

The maximum flight time of 41 minutes means the M30 doesn’t quite have the stamina of DJI’s longest-lasting drones, but DJI takes advantage of its size in another way – it finally revealed its own solution. robotic drone in a box for fully autonomous missions, one small enough to work in the back of a pickup truck.

The DJI M30 drone can fly in heavy rain and has its own robotic dock

Dock.
GIF by Sean Hollister / The Verge

The DJI Dock has its own built-in weather station, surveillance cameras, antennas, automatic 25-minute fast battery charging, and can support a drone mission up to 7 kilometers away, but note the fine print here :

The DJI Dock must be used in accordance with applicable laws and regulations, and its advanced features cannot yet be used in jurisdictions where a human pilot must stay in the drone’s line of sight or maintain physical control of the drone by holding a joystick .

One such “jurisdiction” is the United States, although the FAA has taken steps to let automated drone-in-a-box missions be done on a case-by-case or company-by-company basis. More importantly, American Robotics was given the go-ahead for some that have minimal human involvement last January.

The Dock offers dedicated power and internet access, although DJI says there’s an internal battery for power outages and it can support a 4G dongle.

The DJI M30 drone can fly in heavy rain and has its own robotic dock

This one is the DJI M30T variant.
Picture: DJI

On the camera side, there are actually two M30 models: the M30 and the M30T. I let DJI explain to you:

The M30 model incorporates a 48-megapixel 1/2” CMOS sensor zoom camera with 5× ~ 16× optical and 200× digital zoom, a 12-megapixel wide-angle camera, 8k video resolution 4K photo / 30 fps and a laser rangefinder which can give the precise coordinates of objects up to 1,200 meters away. The M30T has an additional 640×512 px radiometric thermal camera.

There are also six-way obstacle avoidance sensors, and the tri-propeller emergency landing function of the M300 RTK is also making its way here.

As is usually the case with enterprise drones, DJI didn’t provide us with pricing right away – but for reference, the M300 RTK started at $10,000 and up. Here, the two new M30 models come with a completely redesigned RC Plus controller with a larger 7-inch screen (instead of 5.5 inches) and IP54 protection for use in heavy rain while retaining the external battery replaceable. There’s also a new DJI FlightHub 2 flight management package coming in October for DJI’s enterprise drones and a Zenmuse H20N “starlight-grade hybrid night vision sensor” that you can add to the older M300 RTK. .

The DJI M30 drone can fly in heavy rain and has its own robotic dock

The RC Plus controller – note the water ingress protection around the controllers.
Picture: DJI

If you’re interested in the drone-in-a-box: “DJI Dock is currently being tested with select users and will be available for purchase from Q4 2022,” the press release reads.




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