Last November, we heard about Lehmann Aviation’s LA100, a small and fully autonomous UAV designed to capture aerial images with a user-supplied GoPro camera. Now the French company is offering two new models that go farther and stay in the air longer. As with the LA100, both of the new models are designed for use by people with little or no remote piloting experience.
Instead of having to manually control the UAVs in real time, the user preprograms a flight path that the aircraft subsequently follows on its own. The flight path is entered by finger-drawing the desired route on a map of the area displayed on any Windows 8 tablet running an accompanying app. Those coordinates (along with waypoints entered by the user) are subsequently transmitted to the UAV via Wi-Fi.
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The user then hand-launches the plane into the air, after which it will proceed to automatically following the given flight path, taking stills or video along the way, before landing back on the ground at a user-chosen location.
Similar to the LA100, both of the new models have an airspeed of 20-80 km/h (12-50 mph), can withstand wind gusts of up to 35 km/h (22 mph), and are capable of operating in temperatures ranging from -25°C to 60°C (-13°F to 140°F).
The main thing that makes them different is their range. While the LA100 can travel up to half a kilometer (1,640 ft) and stay aloft for a maximum of five minutes, the LA200 can manage 3 km (2 miles) and 30 minutes, while the LA300 boosts a flight range of up to 15 km (9 miles). Additionally, while the LA100 and LA200 are designed to accommodate a GoPro, the LA300 is made for use with the Nokia Lumia 1020 and its 41-megapixel camera.
Both of the new UAVs should be available by the end of September. The LA200 is priced at €2,490 (about US$3,300), with the LA300 coming in at €4,990 (US$6,640) – cameras and tablets not included.
Source: Lehmann AviationView gallery - 3 images