Please note that Skyward InFlight is a feature available to Skyward's Business and Enterprise clients only. If you're interested in InFlight and would like to explore those tiers of service, please reach out to the Skyward Sales team at firstname.lastname@example.org
For InFlight, Skyward currently supports:
- DJI Phantom 4
- DJI Phantom 4 Pro
- DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2.0
- DJI Mavic Pro
- DJI Mavic 2 Pro
- DJI Mavic 2 Enterprise
- DJI Inspire 2
- Mavic 2 Zoom
You must be connected to the Internet in order to log into Skyward InFlight. InFlight will retain your authorization while you are offline unless you have logged out or changed your password.
NOTE: If you are working on a shared device, you must log out after flying to avoid other pilots using your authorization. (This will prevent data issues, for example, flight logs and hours from being credited to the incorrect pilot.) If your device is not on a data plan, using your mobile phone’s connection as a wireless hotspot is a great way to access InFlight’s connected features. Please refer to your phone’s documentation for instructions on tethering your device.
How to Log In
1. Open the Skyward InFlight app
2. Enter your email and password you use to log into Skyward on your browser and tap Sign In.
Prior to connecting your drone, check the airspace regulations for your intended flight location. InFlight’s map displays Part 107 airspace regulations, ensuring situational awareness of the surrounding airspace.
The image below shows the facility map for Portland International Airport. More information about Skyward’s airspace map and associated rules, as well as how to request LAANC authorization to fly in controlled airspace, is available in the Skyward User Guide under Airspace Rules.
Checking Obstacles & Using 3D Imaging
As part of the map functionality, Skyward has recently added a substantial database of obstacles and known obstructions to the map to increase situational awareness for operational planning. This new data includes, but is not limited to: Heliports, Schools, Hospitals, Pedestrian Walking Paths, Major Transmission Lines, Antennas, Tall Buildings, etc...
In order to view these items on the map, pinch to zoom down into your flight area, and look for the obstructions denoted in yellow. On the map pictured below, you'll notice the helipads (and helicopter symbol), pedestrian paths (denoted in yellow dashed lines), and an obstruction measuring 202 ft AGL.
In addition to obstruction marking, the map also allows for exploration in 3D, for even better perspective while reviewing flight areas. To enter 3D mode, zoom down into the flight area that you'd like to explore, and using 2 fingers, push away from you toward the top of the screen. In 3D mode, you're able to navigate building shapes more freely, and better understand the landscape, particularly in urban environments.
Selecting a Map Base Layer
Press the Map Layers button in the top-right corner to choose among the three base layer options: Satellite, Dark, or Outdoor.
On the map, you'll see a number of airspace layers that designate specific information related to those areas. That airspace is as follows:
Red Airspace Layers
- USA: Prohibited Area, Restricted Area, or Temporary Flight Restriction - No Fly Zone
- Future TFRs
Blue Airspace Layers
- USA: LAANC UAS Facility Map Grid
Orange Airspace Layers
- USA: Non-LAANC enabled facilities
- USA: National Parks and Stadiums
Clicking on any of the airspace layers mentioned above will populate an airspace card that provides a detailed description of the airspace in question. Just tap the screen where you'd like to fly, and read the alerts relative to that airspace.
Working with Operations
You do not need to create an operation in order to use Skyward InFlight. All flight logs will be automatically ingested and logged in the Skyward web application (app.skyward.io)
That said, if you did plan an operation in Skyward, InFlight enables you to conduct flights in the context of these operations. Pilots can visualize planned operational areas in the flight map, view operational details, fill out your risk assessment, and complete checklists assigned to an operation.
NOTE: You must be online to view and select Operations.
When you open the app you will be automatically placed on the Home page. Here you can see a list of all your operations. To open an operation simply tap on the operation you wish to open.
When your operation opens the flight area is displayed on the map, the PIC and aircraft will be displayed, and your preflight items will be available to complete. If you scroll down, you'll see an option to enter flight mode, any automated flights created for the operation, and any notes that were entered.
LAANC: Viewing your authorization document
In the Preflight section, tap on the LAANC icon.
A new window will open, here you can tap on View Authorization to view your authorization. Or Delete Authorization to delete it.
Tapping on View Authorization will display the Notice of Authorization. Below is an example notice.
Checklists ensure that pilots follow company procedures in the field. Checklists created in Operations in app.skyward.io are available to review and check off in Skyward InFlight.
NOTE: You must be online to view and select checklists.
Tap the checklist icon in the preflight section of the operations page.
The checklists window will open. At the top you can navigate through all the attached checklists. Checking off the items in checklists will be saved to the operation and available for review in app.skyward.io.
To add a checklist, tap on the Add a Checklist option, then tap the blue plus sign next to the checklist you want to add to the operation.
Connecting to Your DJI Drone
Connect your device to your drone. When you connect, tap the camera view to reveal your drone’s video feed and flight controls. You can toggle the view between the map and the drone’s video feed by tapping on one or the other.
Skyward InFlight Flight Controls
Skyward InFlight flight controls should feel familiar to pilots experienced with DJI. InFlight has many of the same features as DJI GO, including Return to Home and Automated Takeoff and Landing.
Before flying Skyward InFlight for the first time, familiarize yourself with the array of controls and features, as illustrated in the two images below. There's a legend below each image to elaborate on key features.
1. Skyward Menu
2. Safe to Fly Menu
3. Flight Mode Toggle
4. Vision Status
5. GPS Status
6. Video Signal
7. RC Signal
8. Battery Power
1. Take Off
2. Return to Home
4. Drone Telemetry
5. Media Manager
6. Camera Settings Menu
7. Camera Exposure Settings
9. Photo/Video Toggle
10. Exposure Settings
Skyward InFlight supports both Return to Home and Take Off/Land functions, via the icons shown on the left side above. You also can configure both Max Altitude and Return to Home Altitude in the Aircraft Flight Settings Menu.
Aircraft Flight Settings
Tap the Aircraft Flight Settings menu (below) to reveal configurable Aircraft Flight Settings, as shown in the next image. These settings allow you to set your Maximum Altitude, Return to Home Altitude or Home Point. All of the other configurable flight settings can be set in the DJI GO app and will be reflected in InFlight.
We designed camera controls to be easily accessible to the pilot, enabling you to quickly set image settings to capture the perfect shot.
Camera Settings Menu
Tap MENU to open additional camera settings as shown below:
Camera Exposure Settings Menu
Tap the top slider for the exposure settings menu:
When InFlight is connected to a drone, tapping the play button opens the media manager. Here you can preview all of your photos and videos, as well as download images from the SD card.
Due to the larger file size of videos InFlight will not download videos over wireless transfer.
Note: InFlight does not support video playback from DJI aircraft with Occusync.
“Safe To Fly” Functions
Safe to Fly provides assurance to the pilot in the field that weather conditions, airspace, and equipment are safe for flying. See more information regarding Safe To Fly at the end of this section.
When offline, the GCS displays the Safe to Fly status from the last time you had WiFi or cellular connection. If you are not connected to your aircraft but still online, weather and airspace status accurately display, as this information is gathered using the location of your iPad.
Tapping any of the Safe To Fly icons or the Safe to Fly status bar (see image below) opens the Status Menu.
Now that you have checked the airspace, verified compliance, selected an Operation, reviewed your checklists, configured both flight and camera functions, and checked that all is safe—it’s time to fly!
Upon completion of a flight, Skyward InFlight app will automatically save the flight log to app.skyward.io.
- If an operation has been selected, the flight log will be saved to the selected operation.
- If no operation has been selected, the flight log will be saved to Flight Imports. From there it can be matched to an operation or left as a standalone flight.
A Note on Offline Functionality
If your iPad is not connected to cellular data or wifi, you can still use Skyward InFlight to fly, and you will be able to view cached airspace. However, you will not be able to access Skyward operations, checklists, reported weather, or updates to the airspace that have occurred since you were last connected.
If your connection to the Internet is interrupted at any point during flight, your flight will still be logged in Skyward once you reconnect. If your connection is interrupted after you have already selected an operation, once you reconnect, your flight will be logged to that operation. If you have not yet selected an operation, or are not flying in the context of a planned operation when you go offline, you still will be able to access your completed flight on the Flight Imports page in app.skyward.io. From there you can assign it to the correct operation if needed.
Additional Information: Safe To Fly Notifications and Statuses