DJI Matrice 350 RTK vs. Matrice 300 RTK: Everything You Need to Know
Yesterday, DJI revealed the Matrice 350 RTK, the latest addition to its growing line of Enterprise products. Although the upgrades are incremental, the DJI Matrice 350 RTK improves upon the highly-successful Matrice 300 RTK by making it compatible with latest accessories and protocols. In this article, we will look at the specs of the new M350, compare it to the M300, and discuss who should consider buying this new drone.
The DJI Matrice 350 RTK
Visually, the Matrice 350 is identical to its predecessor. DJI left the airframe untouched, opting to improve sensors and other internals for better safety and performance. These upgrades include:
The Matrice 350 offers pilots better flight performance, particularly range. Max range is now up to 20 km, thanks to the addition of DJI’s latest transmission protocol, OcuSync 3 Enterprise.
NEW CONTROLLER: RC PLUS
The Matrice 350 will ship with the DJI RC Plus, an Enterprise-grade controller used with the M30 and Inspire 3. It features an ultra-bright 7-inch display, an IP54 weather rating, and six custom function buttons configurable to the pilot’s preference.
NEW BATTERIES: TB65
The introduction of the TB65 batteries is the most significant feature of the new drone. The TB65 is rated for 400 charge cycles and offers improved thermal management over the TB60. DJI claims this improved performance will lower operating costs for its customers.
Also new is the BS65 Intelligent Battery Station. Pilots can select one of three charging modes and monitor battery health through the RC Plus.
If you have any questions about the TB65, feel free to contact our team here.
The Matrice 350 offers a Payload SDK which supports X-Port, SkyPort V2, and E-Port, the last of which enables the use of SDK payloads designed for the M30. The Matrice 350 RTK is still compatible with the following payloads:
- Zenmuse H20T
- Zenmuse H20N
- Zenmuse P1
- Zenmuse L1
- The weather rating is IP55, a bump up from the M300’s IP45 rating
- The Matrice 350 features a new low-light FPV camera for greater awareness during night operations
- A CSM (Circular Scanning Millimeter-wave) Radar can be mounted to the top of the drone to detect small obstacles like powerlines
The Matrice 350 has an arm lock sensor, which alerts the pilot through the controller if an arm is not completely extended and locked. This safety measure was a highly-requested feature from M300 users.
The Matrice 350 RTK vs. Matrice 300 RTK
|Specifications||Matrice 350 RTK||Matrice 300 RTK|
|Flight Time||55 min.||55 min.|
(44.76 V, 5880 mAh)
(52.8 V, 5935 mAh)
|Max Takeoff Weight||9.2 kg||9 kg|
|Compatible Payloads||H20, H20T, H20N, P1, L1||XT2, XT S, Z30,|
H20, H20T, H20N, P1, L1
|FPV Camera||1080/30fps with a |
|960p/30fps with a |
Who is the Matrice 350 RTK for?
This aircraft is a logical choice for pilots looking to use the Matrice series for the first time. Buying an updated model like the M350 over the older M300 has several advantages. First, it ensures a longer supported lifecycle. Second, it guarantees that your aircraft will be compatible with future accessories.
If you currently fly an M300, the M350 may not be worth the upgrade, especially since the M300 will also be compatible with the RC Pro. Also, if your workflow is optimized for payloads like the FLIR-based XT2, the newer drone is not an option. The Matrice 350 does not appear to support older payloads.
Need help choosing the right aircraft? The FLYMOTION team is ready to help! As an official DJI reseller, we have extensive experience with the entire product line and the needs of our clients. We’ll talk through your requirements and aircraft capabilities to ensure you have the best solution for you. Fill out the form below to get started!
- Published in Uncategorized
Why Use a Mobile Command Center in Law Enforcement Operations
FLYMOTION is a leading unmanned systems and technology provider, delivering cutting-edge solutions to public safety agencies across the United States. In recent years, the company has added a highly effective tool for law enforcement agencies to its portfolio: the mobile command center.
In this article, we will discuss the advantages of using a mobile command center for law enforcement and explore some of FLYMOTION’s custom solutions.
What is a Mobile Command Center?
First, let’s define what a mobile command center is. It’s a vehicle designed to provide a centralized location for law enforcement officials to coordinate and execute their operations. In other words, it is a mobile office that an agency can deploy to an incident. FLYMOTION’s mobile command centers offer state-of-the-art technology options, enabling real-time communication and data sharing. These components make our vehicles invaluable tools for law enforcement agencies.
Using a mobile command center for law enforcement offers many benefits. For one, they provide a centralized location for communication and coordination. Officers at the scene can securely communicate with each other and their superiors in real time. This promotes efficient decision-making and quick response times, essential during critical incidents.
Major incidents also generate enormous amounts of data, including information from surveillance cameras, drone feeds, and radio traffic. A mobile command center offers the ability to receive, process, and share all of this data on-site. As a result, many law enforcement agencies, like this one in Utah, are deploying them to large events.
FLYMOTION’s Mobile Command Centers
FLYMOTION offers a lineup of vehicles for a wide range of applications and budgets.
FLYMOTION’s flagship solution is TRIDENT, a state-of-the-art command center that can be deployed quickly and easily. It is equipped with advanced communication and data-sharing technology, including high-bandwidth internet connectivity, and real-time video and audio feeds. Moreover, TRIDENT can use different heavy-duty chassis, like Mercedes-Benz Sprinter or Ford Transit vans.
MAVERICK is a mobile command center optimal for rapid deployment. Smaller than TRIDENT, it is a cost-effective solution that easily integrates with your fleet. It also offers on-the-go connectivity, large displays, ample storage capacity, and an extensive communication suite to make it an essential tool for law enforcement agencies.
OVERWATCH is a trailer-based solution designed for extended operations. Like the rest of our lineup, OVERWATCH provides law enforcement agencies with the custom layouts and technology solutions necessary to serve a wide variety of applications, including event security and disaster response.
One of the primary reasons for choosing a FLYMOTION command vehicle is the ability to customize it for specific uses. Customization can include the addition of specialized equipment, such as specific communication systems, as well as layout modifications. We tailor every vehicle to your agency’s needs.
In conclusion, a mobile command center is a highly effective tool for law enforcement agencies. They provide a centralized location for real-time communication, coordination, and data sharing. This results in greater situational awareness and informed decision-making.
If you would like to learn more about our mobile command vehicles, fill out the form below or visit our website at flymotionus.com.
- Published in Uncategorized
Case Study: The Boulder PD UAS Program
The Boulder Police Department’s (CO) UAS team is evolving with a new initiative: a Drone as First Responder (DFR) program. Facilitated by Paladin Drones, this DFR program will bolster the situational awareness of officers as they protect and serve over 100,000 Boulder residents.
While DFR is a new concept, the department is no stranger to the benefits of drone technology. BPD has employed drones in numerous operations with remarkable success. But in the UAS team’s minds, one incident illustrates their value best.
A Drone Ends the Pursuit
BPD officers heard the call over the radio: a stolen vehicle was spotted at a gas station. Several units responded and tracked the suspect to an apartment complex. Attempting to evade them, the suspect disappeared to the back of the parking lot. Fortunately, one of the officers kept a drone in his patrol car — a DJI Mavic Zoom at the time — and deployed it for a quick search. He quickly located the vehicle with the drone. Unfortunately, tinted windows prevented the pilot from seeing the suspect.
An unmarked patrol unit then drove into the complex to verify the suspect’s location. The officer spotted the man sitting in the car and attempted to block him in. However, the suspect managed to push past the officer and avoid the spike strip at the lot entrance. In doing so, he drove over a curb and unknowingly damaged the vehicle.
Unable to continue the pursuit (per department policy), units were told to stand down. However, the drone pilot continued to track the suspect and soon noticed something interesting. Shortly after merging onto a nearby highway, the vehicle started smoking, forcing the man to pull over.
Prompted by this development, the pilot called available units to close in. As expected, the suspect ran from his vehicle into a nearby marsh, but officers quickly apprehended him. The successful arrest is credited to the collaboration between units on the ground and the drone pilot, who provided a “play-by-play” throughout the chase.
Surprisingly, the story does not end there. During the foot chase, a second officer flew a drone to the now-abandoned vehicle on the highway. The pilot was able to confirm that the vehicle was unoccupied, so officers moved in to search, discovering a gun in the front seat. They later learned that the driver had multiple warrants for his arrest.
For the UAS team, this incident is a perfect example of how drones ensure success by providing real-time awareness.
As one of their pilots put it, “If I did not follow it [the suspect’s vehicle] with the drone, they [officers] would have just found a disabled vehicle on the side of the highway, and that is it. The suspect would still be running in the neighborhood.”
They also attribute their success to the type of drones used.
“Had we not had small drones to carry in our car,” said one officer, “it [the pursuit] would have been over.”
Assigning smaller drones to patrol vehicles means officers can deploy them early in a call, enabling them to act decisively without wasting precious time waiting on the arrival of a supporting UAS team.
Boulder PD’s drone pilots have also been an invaluable resource for the local fire department. Using the thermal cameras on their aircraft, officers have guided firefighters to hotspots during several recent apartment fires. Their collaboration is remarkably seamless; it is just a matter of “giving the battalion chief an iPad” displaying the drone feed. Incident commanders can then use that information to direct the hose streams.
The Way Forward
The team’s collective successes, as they described it, “opened everyone’s eyes to our capabilities.” As a result, they secured a budget for the UAS team and subsequent DFR program. More importantly, these cases attest to the importance of investing in innovative solutions; increased awareness enables officers to be more effective, resulting in safer communities.
FLYMOTION is proud to be a solutions provider for the Boulder Police Department and applauds them for leveraging technology to serve and protect. If your agency is looking to experience the benefits of a UAS program, we are standing by to help! Fill out the form below or visit our website to learn more.
- Published in Uncategorized
VTOL vs. Quadcopter: Which one is best for public safety?
Our idea of what drones can do is changing. As the public safety UAS industry has matured, so have the capabilities of aircraft. These aircraft vary in size, application, and propulsion type, providing users with specialized solutions that meet their needs. Vertical Take Off and Landing, or VTOL, aircraft are one of these many developing platforms.
But how does the performance of a VTOL compare to that of conventional quadcopters? What advantages can it offer to the public safety sector? We answer those questions here.
What is a VTOL?
Rotary-wing drones, like quadcopters, can take off and land anywhere. Quadcopters also have exceptional maneuverability.
Fixed-wing aircraft trade maneuverability for efficiency. They rely on a fixed airfoil for lift, lowering the load on the motors and increasing battery efficiency. As a result, they offer greater endurance, range, and payload capacity than quadcopters.
VTOLs are fixed-wing aircraft that can take off and land like a quadcopter. Regarded as “the best of both worlds,” they offer flexibility with the efficiency of conventional fixed-wing aircraft.
(While quadcopters are technically VTOLs, we want to clarify that in this article, the term refers to fixed-wing VTOL aircraft.)
How does a VTOL aircraft work?
VTOLs achieve impressive capabilities with either thrust-vectoring jet engines (used on modern military jets) or a tilt-rotor design. While these two propulsion systems are technically different, their premise is the same: thrust is directed downwards for takeoff/landing and horizontally for forward flight.
As you can imagine, the transition between vertical and horizontal flight is crucial to get right. Fortunately, onboard flight computers make the maneuver easy. The pilot can bring the aircraft from a hover to forward flight with a simple command or joystick input.
VTOL Aircraft Applications
It’s no surprise then that VTOLs have the edge over quadcopters across several mission sets. They especially excel in missions that require:
- Long Range
- VTOLs can fly higher, which enables greater transmission strength and range. Therefore, they are optimal platforms for border patrol operations, pipeline inspections, or large mapping projects — all missions encompassing an area outside the range of many quadcopters.
- Long Endurance
- Highly-efficient aircraft, VTOLs have flight times needed for ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance) missions. Many VTOLs available to public safety agencies average a 100-minute flight time — double that of quadcopters.
- Covert Operation
- Flying at high altitudes means lower acoustic signatures. As a result, operators flying VTOLs can discreetly observe a subject without revealing their presence.
Despite their great range and endurance, VTOLs sacrifice performance in two key areas — two areas where quadcopters excel.
Quadcopters are optimal for scenarios that require:
- When it comes to missions like infrastructure inspections or indoor flight, maneuverability is crucial for safety and success. Rotary-wing aircraft like quadcopters are best for these applications.
- Static Overwatch
- Quadcopters are optimized for hovering, making them the best for static overwatch missions. Whether it’s flying over a house fire or barricaded subject, these aircraft will be able to maintain that specific vantage point. On the other hand, fixed wings have to circle a point of interest, possibly losing sight of the subject during the orbit. Although VTOLs can hover, they are not designed to do so for long periods.
Drone technology has progressed enough to make VTOLs accessible to the mainstream enterprise market, including:
- Autel Dragonfish
- Created by the makers of the popular EVO II quadcopter, the Dragonfish is a mature VTOL platform already in use with several U.S. public safety agencies. The Dragonfish is available in three models: Lite, Standard, and Pro. These options differ in size, flight time, and payload compatibility.
- Quantum Systems Vector
- The Vector is purpose-built for tactical applications, offering operators the ability to use military-grade imaging payloads, a C2 link with Silvus radios, and Auterion software. Additionally, the Vector can transform into a dedicated tricopter with an optional configuration kit called Scorpion.
- Wingtra WingtraOne II
- A mapping drone by design, WingtraOne II leverages a VTOL design to provide exceptional performance. The efficiency of fixed-wing flight enables this aircraft to capture larger areas at speeds faster than quadcopters. Exceptional performance, paired with the ability to take off and land in confined spaces, makes the WingtraOne II a powerful addition to mapping workflows
Of course, there are caveats to the incredible capabilities of VTOLs; they cannot replace rotary-wing and fixed-wing drones. As mentioned, hybrid designs require compromise, and VTOLs are no exception. Moreover, these aircraft are significantly more expensive than conventional designs.
What aircraft type should your agency choose? The answer depends on your mission requirements. If your UAS team is deploying to static incidents, they may be better off with a quadcopter. On the other hand, if your agency needs to patrol a wide area — a county or portion of the border — a VTOL will be the better solution.
Questions? The FLYMOTION team is ready to help! You can get started by filling out the form below.
- Published in Uncategorized
UAS Case Study: Beverly Hills PD’s DFR Program
Drones are no longer newcomers to public safety. Several agencies are integrating UAS into their response, including the Beverly Hills Police Department (BHPD).
A New Initiative
In December 2021, the BHPD began a trial program to patrol the Business Triangle, home to the city’s high-end fashion stores. After experiencing some initial success, the program expanded its operations to patrol large parts of the city. But perhaps the most important development is the drone unit’s evolution into a Drone as First Responder (DFR) program.
The “Real Time Watch Center”
The new DFR program is part of a broader initiative to leverage technology, including a “Real Time Watch Center,” for increased vigilance and safety. This social media post highlights the new command center, which displays data from traffic cameras, license plate readers, and drones. Centralizing this information results in what BHPD’s Lt. Robert Maycott calls a “3D incident command space.”
The department has deployed its drone frequently; in 2022, BHPD conducted over 2,000 flights. In over a quarter of the flights, the drone arrived on scene before officers. As a result, the department has experienced increased levels of situational awareness. In one clip they published, a pilot identifies a suspect at a restaurant who threatened to tase an employee. Before the officers’ arrival, the suspect’s identity is confirmed, and a description is relayed to the responding units. Officers promptly find the man and arrest him without any issue.
Recent statistics also support the effectiveness of the UAS program. According to Police Chief Mark Stainbrook, the initiative decreased property crime by 34% between June and September 2022.
This decrease is particularly remarkable because crime is generally highest during the summer; increased tourism and traffic often lead to spikes in burglaries. These favorable outcomes have encouraged the adoption of more proactive tactics, like regular drone flights over the city to look for suspicious activity.
What is DFR?
The efforts of the Beverly Hills Police Department reflect a growing trend in law enforcement agencies throughout the US. Rather than exclusively deploying drones at large incidents, some departments regard it equally effective to launch their aircraft for routine calls. This strategy, known as Drone as First Responder (DFR), ensures the safety of officers by providing critical information ahead of their arrival.
DFR is also a cost-effective solution. Nominal acquisition, operation, and maintenance costs enable smaller agencies to possess a native air support capability without the price tag of manned aircraft or a dependence on the resources of neighboring departments.
It’s also important to remember that the advantages will only continue to increase as DFR hardware/software products evolve. Currently, several mature solutions are in service throughout the country, with new developments promising to expand their applications.
Starting Your DFR Program
Is your agency interested in starting a DFR program? We can help! Backed by years of operational and technical experience, FLYMOTION provides the hardware, software, and consultation you need to build a successful program. You can contact us here or by visiting our website.
Beverly Hills Courier
City of Beverly Hills
The Los Angeles Times
- Published in Uncategorized