Frequently Asked Questions

What sort of weather conditions can you fly in?

The two main limiting factors for the SkyMotion Video drones are wind and precipitation. At the time of this writing, we follow these guidelines.

First, for safety reasons we do not fly our system in winds exceeding 26km/h. For smoothest results we generally recommend flying in winds of 15km/h or less.

Second, we currently cannot fly in precipitation but are actively looking at some very promising solutions to allow for these sort of flights.

Drones in winter

How long can you fly?

Our systems are electric with typical flight times of 7 to 12 minutes, depending upon payload and weather conditions. When the battery pack is almost exhausted, we simply land the drone and replace the exhausted battery packs with a fully charged set. We have several battery packs and a portable charging station on-site to allow continual flights throughout the day. For remote locations which we can drive to, we are able to provide a generator at a cost of $40.00/day.

How high, and how fast can you fly?

We limit our operations to an altitude of 400′ (for legal and safety reasons). As for speeds, wind conditions play a role, but it is not uncommon to obtain maximum speeds of about 50km/h while flying the RED Dragon.

Can you fly indoors?

Yes. Our system is completely electric and very stable. All we need is a location with a large open unobstructed area, such as a sound stage, warehouse, sports facility, auditorium, etc.

Indoor Drone Flying

Can you provide still photography?

Normally, we do not do still photography as our systems are designed for capturing ultra high-definition full motion video. However, we are able to offer high-resolution still photography using our Canon 5D MarkIII kit. We do not offer half day or hourly rates for still photography, and so are normally only hired for larger photography projects.

How does a typical shoot work?

Our team travels to your location with all the necessary equipment. Once at location, we unload, set-up, and do all safety checks. If all systems are good to go, then we can be ready for our first flights in approximately 45 minutes.

Our team consists of three key members: a primary pilot, a remote camera operator/secondary pilot, and a safety supervisor. While the camera is airborne, a live video feed is sent to our ground-station. From here, the camera operator, as well our client(s), can see everything from the camera’s perspective. Together, along-side the pilot, the group can easily communicate to one another in order to ensure the desired images are captured.

Are there any regulations or permitting?

Yes. Regulation and permit requirements are determined by the airspace in which the drone aircraft (or UAV – Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) is to be used. For example, while in Canada we hold SFOC (Special Flight Operations Certificates) to operate in both controlled and uncontrolled airspace, there are still restricted areas which need further permissions. An example of this is Niagara Falls which is jointly controlled by both Transport Canada and the FAA. Meanwhile, in many other parts of the planet, no regulations are in place yet. Even though regulations are maybe not established in some parts of the planet, we still follow a safety template. For full details regarding regulations and permitting, please check out our Regulations Page.

What should I consider for international projects?

Our systems are very mobile and can be easily packed up for flying. We have traveled with, and operated our aerial systems all over the world.

However, there are a few key points and costs to consider when planning an international shoot with us. These include:

  1. Regulations: Are there regulations in place in the country or territory you wish to film in? If so, we need to determine their protocols and permit requirements.
  2. Carnets: To travel in and out of Canada, and in and out of many other countries, import/export carnet documents need to be in place. The acquisition of these documents and the handling of them is handled by SkyMotion Video. Please keep in mind though, that the processing of these documents at borders can take extra time. Please consult SkyMotion Video regarding travel itineraries.
  3. Batteries: High-capacity lithium polymer batteries like the ones used on our drone systems are classified as dangerous goods. As such, these need to be handled, packaged and shipped according to very specific guidelines. Many airlines such as Air Canada, still ship the batteries of passenger planes via their cargo services, but this too requires extra processing time. The shipping fees for the batteries must be determined on a case by case basis with the airlines or courier. To save our clients time and money, SkyMotion Video is trained to package, label, and prepare dangerous good declaration documents.

Do you sell the systems?

At the time of this writing, no, we do not sell these systems.