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Drone News Roundup: Leaked Image Spurs Mavic 3 Rumors, Bald Eagle Takes Down Drone, and More

BY Zacc Dukowitz
14 August 2020

Wondering what DJI’s next drone might be?

Even though the Mavic Air 2 just came out rumors have been flying for a few months now about the imminent release of the Mavic 3—and a new image from what looks like a Mavic 3 patent application seems to support these rumors.

Now let’s get to the links!

Leaked DJI Patent Image Rumored to Show the Mavic 3

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Image source

A recent blog post on the site Photo Rumors highlights an image from what appears to be a leaked patent application for the Mavic 3 (see above). The post is pretty short but the image is certainly compelling. From what we can tell, this new patent is for a drone similar to the Mavic 2 Pro but with a larger camera, updated battery, and new sensor locations.

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In Hard Times, Some Airline Pilots Are Becoming Drone Pilots

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Image source

As you might imagine, being an airline pilot is tough right now. The pandemic has caused a massive decrease in travel, forcing major airlines to furlough and even layoff huge portions of their employees—including their pilots. But according to Sally French (AKA the Drone Girl) some of these airline pilots have been turning to the drone industry to find work. And pilot training programs have also been getting in on this transition, pivoting from training pilots for manned aircraft operations to training them to fly sUAS.

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New Survey Finds 8% of Americans Own Drones

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Image source

A recent article from drone services company Philly by Air highlights drone stats collected in a survey they did of 1,050 Americans. The data includes stats like the % of Americans that own drones broken down by gender, the % of Americans that have ever flown a drone, and the average age of drone owners. One interesting finding was that, although men use drones much more than women (24% for men, 10% for women), the gender gap for drone ownership was much smaller (9% for men, 7% for women).

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Ehang Launches a Large-Payload Firefighting Drone

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Photo credit: Ehang

Sometimes it seems like Ehang makes things just because they look cool. The passenger drone company’s latest offering—“the world’s first large-payload intelligent aerial firefighting solution,” according to Ehang—definitely fits this description. The drone is called the EHang 216F, and it’s specially designed for high-rise firefighting. And unlike the passenger drones it has been developing for years, this drone can actually be put into use right away.

EHang Launches Intelligent Aerial Firefighting Solution

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Bald Eagle Takes Down Government-Owned Drone in Michigan

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Image source

A bald eagle recently took out a Phantom 4 while it was in flight over Lake Michigan. The pilot flying the drone worked for a governmental organization called the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy—or EGLE for short, if you can believe it. The Dutch National Police have actually tried training bald eagles for Counter UAS (CUAS)—so maybe the eagle in Michigan was one of its graduates?

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