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DJI’s new Matrice 30 drone is a mean machine for specialists

DJI has added another drone to its lineup, this one sporting “unprecedented power that fits in a backpack.”

The new Matrice 30 drone, unveiled by DJI on Monday, March 21, is aimed at specialist users rather than hobbyists and has its own docking/recharging station for autonomous missions.

A video (below) released by the Chinese drone giant shows the Matrice 30 conducting a range of operations, for example, inspecting industrial complexes, monitoring solar farms, performing search and rescue work, and assisting firefighters.

The robust-looking drone features four foldable arms and comes with multiple high-performance cameras and other technology in a single payload, including a 48-megapixel camera with a 16X optical zoom and 200X maximum zoom, a wide 12-megapixel camera, and a laser rangefinder for grabbing precise coordinates of objects up to 1,200 meters away. Video can be shot in 4K at 30 frames per second, while a low-light first-person-view camera enables flights in dim lighting conditions, with a smart low-light photo feature offering clear pictures “even at night.”

A variant — the Matrice 30T — comes with all of the above plus a thermal camera.

DJI's Matrice 30 drone.
DJI’s Matrice 30 drone unveiled on March 21, 2022. DJI

A slew of obstacle-avoidance sensors offers the kind of protection you’d expect from a professional machine, while a new generation of quad-antenna transmission offers improved signal stability in busy environments.

DJI says the Matrice 30, which can fly at a zippy 60 mph, can handle “torrential rain, gale-force winds, and freezing cold” conditions, so you should be able to fire it up and send it off in all kinds of weather without worrying if you’ll ever see it again.

The new copter also utilizes FlightHub 2, DJI’s fleet management cloud-based software, as well as the aforementioned DJI Dock for automatic and repeatable drone flights for, say, inspection and monitoring tasks. The dock (below) is pretty cool, too, designed as a box with a top that automatically opens to release the drone for flight. While docked, the Matrice 30 will charge in just 25 minutes for around 40 minutes of flight, though if you’re with the drone you can swap out the battery in a flash.

DJI dock for the Matrice 30 drone.
DJI’s dock for its new Matrice 30 drone. DJI

It’s an impressive package with a price tag to match — the Matrice 30 costs $10,000 while the Matrice 30T with the thermal camera comes in at $14,000.

For that, you’ll get the drone, the newly designed DJI RC Plus controller with a 7-inch display, two drone batteries, one battery station, and a drone storage case.

The DJI Dock is currently being tested with selected users and will be available for purchase toward the end of this year.

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