As always, the editor and chief also known as smiley, miss miriam mcnabb miriam. How are you doing today? I am excellent spring. Is here in new england, its a great day? How are you its good, its a little cold out here? I got a batch of snow last night, so went from mid 70s to mid 30s classic spring in new mexico, so ouch yeah, but uh. We have some exciting news miriam as uh. You know we had predicted here at drone: u uh, as two of our instructors had actually seen this new drone from dji come out the day before it actually was slotted for launch, and i know that you have so much more on this new enterprise drone from Dji, which is pretty exciting, seeing how small portable it is and seeing that its got, you know interchangeable, payloads and the payload that they offered it. Well, i think, thats a story in itself, but miriam. What do you have here? Music well, im gon na rely on you for the technical look at. You know how these things are actually gon na play out in the field, but i really thought this was um kind of incredible news. Frankly, from dji you know, dji has been definitely playing at low key over the last year. Absolutely they have an organization thats buttoned up, but they really have um not been doing huge announcements over things. So im not sure that everybody saw what a big announcement.

This was gon na be this is a new enterprise, drone actually kind of a suite of products, so some really significant things. This is the new m30 enterprise drone. This is foldable. Portable fits in a backpack, extremely weather resistant comes with for the first time a drone docking station. So we can talk about that, a little bit more because uh boy, that the timing is just beautiful there with the bv lows flight regulations, kind of on the on the cost, with the arc recommendations coming out and uh, hopefully an nprm to follow. So they are uh providing now a docking station which would enable fully autonomous remote operations. So you know the idea being that you could have that drone operating a hundred miles away from yourself. They have a upgraded controller. Theyve got a new zenmuse camera that is going on their matrices series also really exciting. So what are you hearing kind of from your instructors and whats the reaction of the pilots about these about these features because im sort of looking at the specs thinking? Okay? This is this is kind of impressive, but um. You know i mean, of course the proof is going to be out in the field with the pilots yeah and you know again speaking uh without experience on it. Just yet. Weve already got one on its way here, but having that triple camera payload with 200 times zoom, is it really kind of changes? The way that i think were going to uh think about buying drones? You know, as there have been other american manufacturers talking about just how close they can get their drones to various objects for inspections and mapping, and all of that and this drone and the the powerful payload that it does offer really kind of negates that issue.

As a whole, being that you dont have to really be that close, you dont have to really be in a more dangerous situation. In order to make these jobs happen, i think its really cool seeing the redundant battery system, you know uh, it is foldable. It is portable, but were still talking a fairly sizable drone here and you know miriam. We had heard rumors and speculation that dji had already stopped the production on the phantoms kind of expecting to empower a new mapping drone and the fact that this h20n, i believe, is the name of the payload – has a laser range finder, i think, is really going To add, you know new elements uh to getting jobs done, making it more efficient and more effective as a whole. You know. I think that this is an awesome drone. I think this is kind of what the industry needed. Uh im really excited for it. I will just say that i think that this is going to empower so many operations in just one little drone. So i hope that we see dji support this aircraft for years to come kind of like weve, seen with the phantom and whatnot and again, i think its going to make a lot of competitors kind of shiver in their shoes a little bit, because this is this – Is not just a new competitor, i mean this. Is this really takes uh the offerings to a new level or multiple levels higher? And i know that you said that uh.

You think that the timing of this release is quite interesting because uh what we just heard from that bb los arcs. So so, why do you think that the timing is important here? Well here? What im really referring to is the docking mechanism, and when you talk about this docking mechanism, this is designed to enable a whole different set of operations that we havent really seen dji get into anymore. This is a before sorry. This has been sort of the biliwick of um. You know starting way back uh before through 2020, the aerobotics system in israel – i dont know if you remember, going to shows 2018 2017 and – and you would see the aerobotics system, which was absolutely massive – a huge huge, huge docking box designed to automatically charge and protect That drone so that it could operate remotely on a remote site to complete surveillance missions that has shrunk down with products like percepto and other israeli company, and you know, percepto has had a lot of luck. Getting uh bvlos waivers on industrial sites around the world, thats another sort of drone in a box solution where you have a docking station that automatically charges the drone and launches the drone. So you can be. You know, 100 miles away. If, if regulations allowed you to, you could be a hundred miles away um only coming in to check on that drone, you know periodically once a week or whenever the drone sort of does its cycle goes back to base charges itself launches again and sends the feeds Back to uh, wherever the operator is so that kind of industrial application that very, very human free uh operation of the drone, is something that is only enabled with bvlos regulations, its an incredibly valuable industrial application.

You think of things like mining sites which, by law, have to be monitored for something like 10 years after they close and stop making any money. You know theyre in the middle of nowhere. What you need is something to just make the cycle and um tell you. Whats going on same in fields in parking garages, you know all kinds of applications for this yeah, so i think you know, as we see bb lows getting closer here in the us, to have that offering come on to the market right before the industry is able To kind of adopt that sort of remote operations is really interesting and it definitely does sort of um change the competitive landscape for that kind of remote ops. There were also sort of inspections like um power line inspections, and things like that. Uh that happen with those remote operations. So one question: i want to ask you before we get into, because i want to talk a little bit more about the bb lowes arc. I know that you guys dove into the new pilot recommendations from those arc recommendations, and i want to dive into that. But one question id like to ask you is when i was looking at all of the materials for djis new drone. It really is its a its an all in one, in the sense that it does cross industries. So this is not a you know, ag drone or a inspection drone or a public safety drone.

Specifically, it can be used across in industries. That being said, i think there are a lot of new features that are definitely targeted at public safety and a lot of new features definitely targeted at industrial inspections. You know when youre talking about that standoff distance, thats, something critical for both public safety and for inspectors. You know you just dont want to be in the danger range. Whether danger range is talking about like where the criminal activity is happening or where the nuclear power plant is. You really want to just be as far away as you safely can be. So what do you think who do you think um theyre targeting here? Do you think that this, like the phantom is kind of uh cross generate? You know, cross sector thing the price point this is not. This is definitely not for somebody whos, just recreational. The price point uh puts it out of there, but on the other hand, its a less expensive, uh high quality commercial unit, so well um. I think you know. A lot of people were stating that this drone was uh targeted towards public safety. But when you do look at some of the features you think of like power line inspections that stand off distance right to avoid those coronal ejections on those big power lines, i think its a its a powerhouse tool for that from solar inspections, power line inspections, uh Communications inspections, when were talking about construction uh and the ability to use that for mapping itll be interesting to see what the new app offers as far as mapping is concerned um.

But i think the audience is fairly wide here kind of like what you are alluding to. I have seen a range of price points, though, as far as price points are concerned, what are you seeing miriam? So i thought i saw something that said about ten thousand dollars. Am i way out of line there thats what i saw thats what i saw and i i thought i saw that the thermal edition was like 12.99 um ive seen some prices on the internet ive seen a lot of companies say: request a quote to find out Pricing and whatnot, which uh i dont know i mean i think it depends on what youre putting on it and and what your package looks like, but uh. At the same time, you know i mean its, not a recreational drone, its not something youre gon na use. You know just for fun: on the other hand, um for commercial drones, depending on how effective those sensors are, it could actually be on the less expensive side of the commercial offerings. So yeah, you know you compared to the price of an m 300 and all the accessories that you would get with that and its definitely a lot cheaper, and i think that thats, i think, thats powerful. When you look at the current competitors to dji. When you look at the air peak, when you look at you know the free flight astro, when you look at uh skydios enterprise, drone theyre, all in that price range – and you know none of them are producing the volume that dji produces so uh its gon na.

Be easier to acquire one of these drones, its going to be easier to have support on these drones, its going to be easier if something crashes and you need an easy replacement. You know, i think i think dji still offers a robust ecosystem for their aircraft for operators. So the price point being you know five figures, no matter, you know which option that you get its still a lot cheaper than picking up an m 300, which is an ugly looking terminator like drone that uh its not that portable. You know i cant tell you how many crown moldings and door moldings. I have broken on those cases, those matrice cases. Everyone knows what im talking about and uh. You know ive been yelled at by the wife a few times uh with that, and so i like the more portable option. I also think it opens up the door for some more commercial opportunities as well being that its smaller you know. When we look at public safety, we look at how much space is available on their vehicles as a whole. Theres, not a lot of space. Typically, those trucks are designed with certain tools in mind, and so you dont really have a lot of free space in those things, and you know i think dji was cognizant of that and uh. You know i. I really think too um that this drone is probably the most robust offering that weve seen in a compact platform, i think ever you know, we say compact platform, though i think thats a relative term, because this is still a fairly sizable folding drone.

You know this is this is not a mavic 3, i would say, consider two or three of those. As far as width is concerned, uh, you know and uh depth as well, and so that said, you know, i think the price point is reasonable and i think that you bring up some really important points. This whole dock, you know itll, be interesting to see how that plays into it all, especially with the bvlos arc, and those committee recommendations – and you know here – is dji just once again, paving the trail or blazing the trail forward to say: hey, we see you want To do this and uh heres our offering and its already there yeah, and i think you know its always important – to sort of remind people despite the sort of sound and fury that uh you – and i have discussed many many times that goes on in terms of Can you use dji drones uh at the government level? Dji still has a vast majority of the drone industry in this country, and you know years ago i interviewed um colin guin and he was talking about working with dji and he said hey. You know that volume really works in their favor when youre talking about quality control, because if there is an error with that drone theyre going to get 5 000 people telling them about it on day one. You know they just have this really tight development cycle because of the volume thats it and – and you know they still do – have a vast majority of the drone industry uh in this country.

They sure do all right. So that being said, i know that the pilot community definitely wants to hear the details on what potential changes are coming into play for remote pilot certificates in terms of beyond visual line of sight. So again, this would be if you want to be hired by one of these companies or using these drones fully remotely. There could be an extra certification that youre going to need what you dove into the recommendations more than 200 pages good for you. What did you come up with give us the give us the short version Music? Well, i appreciate that the faa rewards those who read the source, but man theres, so many pages and repetitive information, but um. Thank you miriam by the way, um. That said, i think that your point to uh kind of your underlying point of like well see what happens right its its because these are recommendations from the ark. So it will be interesting to see what the faa actually takes from this document and implements because theres a whole lot here, and you know there are two variables to consider. As far as the timeline of these things coming to fruition, youve got an faa administrator who just resigned right so so what impact is that gon na have on the implementation of these recommendations? Youve got a federal court case against remote id that we were expecting to hear the answer on by now, but we havent had a final ruling.

Yet how will that affect these recommendations as well, which i think there would be significant implications, uh just just from what im reading now? That said, you know in the first time that we discussed these recommendations. You wrote up the article on five key takeaways and one of those key takeaways was look. There is going to be new levels of 107 certification, youll, have your basic and then youll have your advanced operator or bvlos operator. Well, thats, not the only level of certification that theyre talking about theyre talking about having another one where we are going to have certifications for agricultural operations or spraying operations, but theres a key differentiator here, because they break up those agriculture or spraying operations. And they were, they were careful about how they labeled this, because spraying can be not just agriculture, as were learning with companies like uh, lucid drone tech, where theyre using wind, high rise window, cleaning and spraying. You know theres a theres an awful lot. Absolutely it could be fire yeah prevention right, you could be spraying fire retardant, absolutely thats, a really good point. In fact, we could use an autonomous drone with some purple k, fire retardant just for our office with all those battery fires. You know im just kidding um, but that said you know uh. There is two levels for the spring. You have your basic or your simple levels that they call it where, essentially, you would be allowed to bypass a large part of part 137 theyre talking about you know completely rewriting that as to have a separate clause for drone operators, if youre not familiar with part 137 thats, essentially the regulatory space that essentially dictates how agriculture or spring operations would happen, but was written for manned aviation.

So, just like you know, with bvlos operations where the faa and these waivers are calling for a cfi uh to be the operator. We know that one thats, not scalable two, you know the capital outlay to make that happen is, is ridiculous and frankly closes out the market to almost all drone operators, and so with spraying they would negate the cfi recommendation again and they would have that simple certification To allow pilots to do ag or spraying as a whole, but then theyre talking about a more complex certification that would even change the aircrafts uh characteristics, meaning that they would allow for heavier drones up to 200. Pounds is what they were talking about, so thats a big difference from the 55 pound drone. You know with the 200 pound drone, a lot of people were like what drone would weigh 200 pounds. Think of the yamaha r max helicopter. This is a drone. It is a traditional rotor or by rotor setup uh. You know it has multiple spring tanks on it to allow for various different types of materials or solvents to be sprayed. I mean you think about even in the example of high rise window cleaning youre going to have distilled water in one tank and youre, going to have cleansing fluid on the other. So that really does open up the world to a lot more advanced operations and were not just talking about one new level of certification, but rather three, so we are finally seeing the unmanned world uh mimic and mirror the manned aviation world where weve got.

You know numerous types of certifications that are plausible, so i think its very exciting uh. You know there are a couple things in there where theyre talking about vvlos operations and drones, um to have very specific types of aircraft markings to make them more uh contrast, heavy and easier to see out in the world. You know i thought that was very interesting. Itll be interesting too about how they actually lay that out because, as drones are defined right now, the faa cannot force manufacturers whatsoever to do anything to their drones because they dont have air worthiness certificates. So would we see these more advanced drones? Have those air worthiness certificates? The answer is yes. Now the really interesting part to this miriam all of these certificates, except one, would essentially be created on the existing faa system of online uh examination, but that higher level spraying or agricultural operations would require a practical examination or training specific to the aircraft that theyre using Now, obviously, here at drone, you were excited about that um. But i also think its a step in the right direction, because you are having to prove that the pilots know how to articulate and operate that aircraft. But as far as the specifics on what they have to show in this practical examination, they do not discuss, which i found very interesting because once again here we have this dilemma of regulators with very little drone experience very little flying experience, saying hey, we want to See you pass a practical examination? Well, what does that? Look like an orientation loss, drill uh how to bring the drone the fastest way down drill? Does this talk about you know, hey, i want to be able to see you articulate a banking turn or uh.

You know how to show me how to stop a fly away. You know what are the specifics that were going to see in that so again, itll be very interesting to see, like you said and alluded to previously what actually gets implemented and how yeah – and i think you know – theres theres – an interesting part of this um, where They really did work hard to say this is risk based performance based approach, you know so to say. Listen youre gon na have to have a practical exam, but then say: okay were gon na update what whats in that practical exam every x number of years or something would make the regulation future proof, because if you get too deep into the weeds, like you just Dont know what that drone technology is going to look like 10 years from now. You know its evolving so rapidly, so it is exciting stuff its actually, although i do tend to get some negative emails about uh anytime, i i talk about sort of further licensing and and further testing requirements and so forth guys i didnt actually decide this myself. I just wrote about it like it wasnt. I am not calling for new regulations, guys um dont shoot the messenger, but at the same time i really do think that the community of pilots, professional pilots should actually be psyched about this, because this is like bringing their profession up a level and saying hey.

Im. A professional i had to invest in my training, i had to invest in my licensing – i am you know worth the money. This is a real profession, yeah and theres, a certain level of professionalism that kind of goes uh with that and a level of seriousness. That goes with that too, and – and i think a lot of people would agree with me, and i would love to hear everyones comments that i think that the drone industry is is fairly aggregate. Absolutely speaking, unprofessional uh, you know, weve had students come in just in the last few weeks, complaining about things that theyve seen in facebook groups. You know, and – and i always want to ask people like: do you think an employer or potential client would ever read your comments, because if so you would never get hired um, but that said, i think it will segregate the drone pilot industry from oh. You have your 107 to hey. I have my 107, my 107 bv, my 107s and my 107 s2. You know youre going to be looked at differently, its the same thing. If you know you are training a bunch of new pilots and one of them says: hey im, atp rated already and youre like oh, you know, like i instantly know how to talk and treat you talk to. You excuse me and treat you not treat you like. Give them an ice cream cone so, but i i mean, i think uh.

I think its really interesting as a whole. Miriam and again, like you, said, lets see what actually happens here, because right now, its all a bunch of talk, yep, yep but exciting stuff. On the horizon again super interesting that dji sort of comes out with this product that will enable um real autonomous vividos operations uh in future and im looking forward to hearing more from your pilots and – and you all watching this uh about what you think about the New dji offering yeah its gon na be very interesting, uh, indeed, to say the least so well miriam. Thank you so much for joining me as always, today greatly appreciate your time and uh. Thank you, and i will see you next week, all right look forward to it all right, thats gon na do it for us everyone. Let us know what you think about these recommended regulation changes and the advancement of the industry as a whole. Let us know what you think about this new drone: does it pull the rug out from other competitors with its offering, or does it force competitors to up their game at the end of the day, we all win so curious as to what you guys and girls Think, thanks again for joining us, as always for another edition of drone life.