“We were able to drive to a location that was about a mile and a half away from the eruption sight, where we set up basecamp. I knew range would be an issue but since the quadcopter was equipped with an automatic ‘return home’ function, I wasn’t worried about losing the drone,” Cheng tells Rotor Drone Magazine, explaining that they eventually walked to a location about three-quarters of a mile away from the rim of the volcano.
“From the new location, we were able to launch successful flights over the volcano,” he continues. “Every once in a while we would experience RF interference, causing sporadic video and control signal loss. We speculated later that there might be some sort of radio frequency interference being generated by the molten lava as it moved and exploded out from within the crater. During the last flight, we lost video signal, and it never came back. Alarmed, I signaled for the Phantom 2 to return to home, and after a few minutes, we saw the tell-tale flashing lights of the Phantom as it came flying back home. When it landed, we discovered that the GoPro camera had actually melted during the flight! Thankfully, we were able to remove the microSD card and recover the video footage.”
Read the full story here and watch his video below.