Spring has arrived so at DroneBlocks, we decided to share a fun activity to try with your Tello drone. Read on for some spring inspiration...
Here in Texas, students have finished the first round of state testing and teachers are searching for ideas to keep students engaged, but still learning. In our search for awesome Easter activities, we came across a brilliant 3D print design on Thingiverse created by Mr. Will Adams, username: B1inkfish. As you can see from the screenshot shown, he flew his Tello with a real egg on top! So cool!!!! However, once we saw this, all we wanted to know is…
Can we program Tello to flip and drop this egg??? 🤔
Right away we 3D printed the design with a MakerBot. It was a fairly quick build and snapped on top of Tello perfectly! (Note: It is a very nice fit but be cautious when removing the Egg Flopper because the small prongs can easily break off.) Next, we opened the DroneBlocks app and programmed Tello to fly with a plastic egg in the Egg Flopper full of candies! It took off, flew up, flipped forward, and the candies flew all over the place! It was impressive, hilarious and incredible!
Our teacher brain immediately went to work thinking of how this could be used in the classroom. We could record data and analyze to see if different Tellos perform the same way when “flopping” the egg. We could test to determine if the Tello has less power after a few trial runs with the battery power at a lower level. We could even measure the area of the room, placing markers to hit with the flopping eggs. Talk about an exciting lesson!
...However, there was something we still needed to test: dropping a real egg.
Remember, in the Thingiverse photo B1inkfish has his Tello in the air, holding an egg. It has to work, right?
We had a full Saturday of rain and wind storms and were not about to mess with a raw egg indoors so Sunday was the day. We programmed a simple DroneBlocks mission…
We waited for the magic to happen and Tello took off...
…And it flew, but then promptly landed.
So we tried again and it promptly landed.
Then we tried launching from our hand to help with the lift!
...And it promptly landed.
After quite a few tries and full batteries, we came to a conclusion: Yes, Tello can fly a real, raw egg in the Egg Flopper. Can it flip while holding the egg? No, not with our tests. We did get to see the egg finally break but it was because of a tumble landing and it was still cool!
Can Tello Flip and Drop An Egg?
It certainly can fly holding an egg with a fully-powered battery, but does not have enough power to flip holding a real egg.
We went back to dropping the plastic egg which worked every time!
Watch the video below, which showcases our attempts:
Try this activity yourself or with your children this week. We cannot wait to see what data you are able to gather. While we’re a little disappointed Tello was not able to flip while holding an egg, the idea is excellent and it worked great with lighter plastic egg. A few ideas we hope you will try:
Tip #1: Confetti isn’t as messy as egg yolk but we would still recommend having a broom or vacuum close by.
Tip #2: Our local grocery stores sell cascarónes this time of year and of course, so does Amazon. Otherwise, get creative and have some fun making your own Cascarónes!
2. Fill plastic eggs with jelly beans and have teams of students measure the distance, and use DroneBlocks to program Tello to fly and flip the egg into a bucket. The team with the most eggs or candies in their bucket wins the challenge!
3. Analyze data! Collect information about how Tello performs with different payloads. Determine if battery power percentage affects the performance. We tried testing outdoors but the slight wind could have impacted Tello’s ability to flip while holding an egg. Test out some of these ideas and share your results!
Remember, it is not recommended to fly Tello outdoors because of its light weight. There is very little wind today and Tello was slightly weighted with its load so we felt comfortable performing short, contained flights outdoors. Please also remember never to fly above your head and practice safety when attaching any sort payload to a drone. Fly safe and share your photos and results with us @DroneBlocks (Twitter | Instagram). We cannot wait to see what you discover!