Sony Proves Its Airpeak Drone Can Handle 44MPH Winds

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The drone space could get more competitive in the future if Sony’s Airpeak drone project bears fruit.

Photo by Airpeak from Sony.

Of course, after months of silence following the announcement last year, people were beginning to wonder whether this was all pie-in-the-sky thinking or an actual thing the company was developing.

Well, it looks like the Airpeak is more than real – and more than capable of flying it seems – because Sony just released a video of it handling 44MPH winds in a test wind tunnel provided by the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA).

This kind of testing is critical, Sony points out, to determine how well the drone will function in a variety of potential weather scenarios. Specifically, “[the] propulsion system is optimized to ensure stable flight even in strong winds and features an ESC designed for superior control, highly efficient and responsive 17-inch propellers, and lightweight, high-performance, high-power brushless motors.”

But it isn’t just about being mechanically capable of handling high winds. It’s also about adapting on the fly as conditions change.

“In the natural world, the direction of the wind is constantly changing, making control harder. Developing agile and responsive control functions is essential, and simply speeding up the propellers is not the answer. The key to stable flight is to design a system that is both highly responsive to the environment, and can maintain control under any condition. We are developing a unique propulsion system and flight controller for the device, and testing the technology in strong winds and other challenging environmental conditions as we strive towards an optimum level of flight stability for Airpeak,” Sony writes on their website.

You can watch the video of the drone in the JAXA wind tunnel at this link right here.

What do you think of Sony’s Airpeak drone? Does it sound like a compelling option when compared with the offerings from DJI and others? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

Don’t forget to check out some of our other photography news on Light Stalking at this link right here.

[DPReview]

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