lithium ion drone

Lithium-ion batteries: the heart of every drone

Bart Nijssen
Account Manager
More articles by Bart Nijssen

Times are changing: drones are now the most normal thing in the world, whereas a few years ago they were a rare sight. Nowadays, drones are often used for work in the fields of security, inspection, filming and photography – in the field, in other words. Yet the packaging of drones is often inadequate for this purpose.

Battery = lifetime

Convenient, weatherproof and impact-resistant packaging makes it possible to transport drones easily and safely and to have them operational again quickly. Manufacturers take the dimensions of the drone into account and adapt the packaging accordingly. However, the life force of drones – the battery – is often not taken into account, or not sufficiently.

The average battery life of a drone can be translated into approximately 30 flying minutes. So a drone needs several batteries to be active for a day (or part of a day). However, we see that many manufacturers do not take extra batteries into account in their cases. If you pack a drone in a case with two extra cutouts for batteries, your drone can fly for a maximum of one and a half hours. It is therefore wise to think about how you incorporate storage space for extra cases into the design of the packaging.

Ease of use of drone packaging

Drone packaging still has to be adapted to the actual needs of its users. A drone used to inspect agricultural crops is literally used in the field and is therefore not always near charging facilities. The same applies to drones used for festival reporting or other forms of recording.

The ease of use of a drone case depends on three factors: the degree to which the drone is ready for use, the size of the case, and cut-outs that promote flexibility. These days, drone cases are becoming larger because manufacturers are increasingly choosing to pack drones as ready for use as possible. Open the case, mount the propellers, and take to the air. This leads to an increase in volume; often a larger case. This is at odds with the desire for a case that is as compact as possible; after all, this saves on transport costs and increases user mobility.

Users want to be able to take their drone with them when they travel – of course this must be easy and safe. However, users also want to be able to fly for a long time, so extra space for batteries will have to be taken into account in the case design. Finally, there are also the strict regulations on air transport of li-ion batteries and accumulators. How many batteries can you take on board?

Early involvement

The development of an optimal drone case therefore goes hand in hand with the wishes and needs of the user. The advice is therefore to think about the design of the case in good time. Early involvement of the producer ensures that the right case can be developed in time, taking into account the wishes of the end user. Talk to a packaging specialist in time so that your wishes can be taken into account in the development of a drone case for you.

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