Last weekend NOVAerial conducted some real cold weather testing of a 3DRobotics Iris+ equipped with Pixhawk in eastern Quebec. Early morning temperatures in this location were -30C, which is cold enough that even gloved fingers froze after a few minutes. Not quite frostbite, but deep into pain territory.
Spurred on by Leonard Hall’s taunts (a fellow Arducopter developer), some snow resistance testing was conducted. It passed. It can handle just about any amount of snow you could reasonably throw at it. Throughout the weekend, there were no problems related to the low temperatures. -30C is a non-issue for the Pixhawk and ESCs.
NOVAerial haven’t had this Iris for long, but so far it’s shown to be an impressive machine. The out-of-the-box settings were pretty much spot on. It flies extremely smoothly. The only changes made were to allow 45° lean angle, and enabling Stab and Acro modes. The camera used on-board was a Sony AS100V on the semi-fixed front mount included with the Iris. The results are not great, with heavy rolling-shutter artifacts seen. You can see the effect of the Sony’s electronic image stabilization. If you peer through the jello, you can see that the video is actually quite smooth and watchable.