Vertical Inspections with Hammer

Hammer
Hammer
Feb 13 · 4 min read

Hammer is an app for DJI drone pilots that automates a number of different commercial drone flights for quick and precise data collection.

Tutorial

In this tutorial, we will focus on vertical inspections — 1 of the 3 inspection missions supported by Hammer:

  1. Horizontal Inspection — of buildings, roofs, and other infrastructure.
  2. Linear Inspection — of pipelines, rail-roads and railway tracks.
  3. Vertical Inspection — of building walls, cliffs and other vertical structures.

Vertical Inspection

This type of inspection is useful for precise surveying of building walls and other vertical structures such as cliffs, waterfalls, etc.

In this mission, Hammer calculates picture points inside a vertical frame placed a horizontal distance from the building. From a top down view, this is visualised as a line generated parallel to the building. Hammer then flies the drone from top to bottom in altitude on this line, taking a picture with the camera facing forwards.

You can think of it as a regular grid mission flipped into a vertical plane.

Steps to Create

  1. Tap on the add(+) button in the right side panel.
  2. Choose ‘Vertical Inspection’ from the available missions.
  3. Draw a line to mark the building edge/facade to be inspected.

    OR
  4. Fly the drone to the top-left corner of the building. Tap the back the right button on the controller. Then fly the drone to the top-right corner of the building and tap the back right button on the controller. This will capture the GPS points and draw a line:
Fly-To-Draw Vertical Inspection Line

5. Once you are happy with the line that marks the building edge, click OK on the right panel.

Hammer will generate a flight path parallel to the drawn line. The drone will move left/right, up/down on this path during the mission. The blue arrows represent the drone’s position and heading at each point in the mission.

Creating a Vertical Inspection Mission

Steps to Configure

  1. Tap on the white gear icon on the mission you wish to configure, which will open a settings menu.

Note: In case the generated arrows are not facing the building wall to be inspected, simply open the settings menu for the mission and tap on rotate points to rotate them by 180 degrees

2. Now use the settings menu to configure the mission settings.

Configuring a Vertical Inspection Mission

Brief description of the available settings:

Top Altitude: Starting altitude for the flight, with reference to the takeoff point. The drone will not go higher than this point in the inspection. If you used fly-to-draw feature to create the mission, the top altitude will be set to the altitude of the drone while drawing.

Bottom Altitude: Ending altitude for the flight, with reference to the takeoff point. The drone will not go lower than this point in the inspection.

Note: Correct Altitude values can be directly fetched from the drone by flying the drone to the top-most and bottom-most altitude of the building and tapping the drone icon next to the altitude setting.

Altitude Fetchers — Align the drone with the top and bottom of the building and tap on these buttons to fetch the drone’s current altitude and set it as the top/bottom altitude of the mission.

Horizontal Distance: Distance (in metres) of the flight path from the building.

Image Overlap: The % of overlap between images of the wall/facade.

Rotate Points: Option to rotate the points 180 in case the generated points are not facing the building by default.

Note: If the generated points are not facing the building/structure, simply tap on rotate points in the settings menu and they will rotate to face the building.

Steps to Simulate

  1. Once you are finished creating and configuring the mission, simply press play button in the right panel.
  2. If no drone is connected, Hammer will prompt you to add a simulator, press OK and choose a home location for the simulation. Then press OK.
  3. The simulation will begin and you’ll see a simulated drone appear on the screen flying the vertical inspection mission.
Simulating a Vertical Inspection Mission

Steps to Fly

  1. Once you are happy with the created mission, simply connect your drone to Hammer through the USB port on the remote controller.
  2. You’ll see a drone icon appear on the screen at its current location.
  3. Press Play to start the mission.
  4. Press Pause anytime to pause the mission, and play to resume the mission.

Summary

And…that’s it! Now you know how to create, simulate and fly your own vertical inspection mission in Hammer. If you currently do not have access to the iOS app, feel free to contact us through hammermissions.com or download the app through the app store.

If you’d like to learn more about other missions supported in Hammer, please visit https://medium.com/@hammermissions

Mission Guides

Hammer

Written by

Hammer

Drone Missions, from A to Z.

Mission Guides

Tutorials for flying different types of missions using Hammer.

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade