Competition Day 2.
Today was fairly interesting. Day 2 of competition is the primary flight day. We are given 45 minutes to fly in the search area and another 60 minutes to compile a report of our findings.
Our flight time was at 12:10pm, so the morning was filled with creating a final report template, readying the plane and a bit of programming.
We set up our Ground Control Station(GCS) and were comfortably waiting. Finally our time came around. We started up the systems and were turning on imaging, when all of a sudden the plane caught fire.
Earlier that day concern was expressed as to how strongly our voltage regulators were in place. As a result a rubber band was used to additionally secure them. The only damage was to a single voltage regulator powering our autopilot board. An electrical connection was quickly made so that the autopilot board drew power from the other voltage regulator.
Finally with 17 minutes of flight time to spare we made it out to the field. Andrew had the plane up in the air and was just about to launch it when we got a no-go. Dirt-bikers had made there way into the airport property. We subsequently had to wait until they were chased off. Our time was paused.
Andrew launched the plane, but something flew off as it left Andrew’s hand. Worried it was part of the prop or another vital component, Rijesh immediately cut throttle. The plane came down hard and the tail boom snapped again; in the same place as yesterday. Harmless logo stickers that were poorly applied to the plane had flown off.
We ended up not going into the air. We got our second airframe ready that afternoon and performed all necessary calibrations. We are feeling very confident about tomorrows flight.