Mavic downward lights
Downward pointing lamps provide help to land as the daylight fades.

Here is what I found.

By going into the aircraft menu on the DJI controller screen, allowing multi flight modes and confirming acceptance of the terms and risks, it is possible to program the mode switch on the side of the controller to select ATTI mode. T mode which is pre-programmed as the fairly benign tripod mode becomes the mildly crazy, flighty ATTI mode.

WARNING NO GPSplease read the manual and warnings before attempting this exercise.

I do not encouraged anyone to try this without first being aware of the risks. I accept no responsibility for any damage or loss however caused. A good way to learn how to fly without GPS is with something on the lines of a little Hubsan X4.

With the DJI controller in T mode the aircraft rear status lights slowly blink yellow and the front red lights are lit as standard. The aircraft maintains its height but is blown around by the wind. Flying forwards directly into the wind is not an issue, its while turning when it hits side on then from behind! Good forward thinking to counteract the effect is essential to avoid unintentional positioning.

As the aircraft turns down wind forward thrust may not necessarily be required. Depending on the strength of the wind reverse thrust and counter role must be considered to maintain control….. Again this is merely what I found from my own trial and error.

Even while maintaining VLOS of the aircraft and its lighting systems it can very quickly become a bit of a handful particularly in poor light. The RTH feature can be a useful function to keep in mind during ATTI practice sessions. I recommend fully mastering the different RTH features before attempting to fly in ATTI mode.

With as little as 4m/s wind, flying a circle in ATTI mode requires significant concentration and accurate pilot input. The smallest of errors can quickly throw the aircraft way off course. While briefly rethinking the correct stick positioning the aircraft is free to run off into the sunset or worse tree!

Obviously the key to successful ATTI flight is going to be regular practice to develop and maintain good muscle memory. I would recommend finding somewhere with lots of obstacle free open space.

Stay safe up there!

1 thought on “ATTI and RTH”

  1. Hi Stuart,

    Great write up for a new Jedi of the Drone pilot industry..! To switch off all pilot aids is a bold step…Feeling, seeing and controlling the aircraft is a force to be reckond with!

    Keep up the skills!.


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