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Randy's Groups

Randy's Discussions

ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing

Started this discussion. Last reply by Randy 10 hours ago. 823 Replies

ArduCopter-3.1 released!

Started this discussion. Last reply by Emin Bu Jul 18. 1508 Replies

Running SITL on Windows

Started this discussion. Last reply by Steven McAdam on Tuesday. 48 Replies


Welcome, Randy!

Latest Activity

Randy replied to Randy's discussion ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing
"@Ravi, The pixhawk and px4 support two compasses in total.  So there's one internal compass (i.e. built into the board and cannot be disabled easily) and then one additional external compass (like on the GPS+Compass module) can be attached…"
10 hours ago
Ravi replied to Randy's discussion ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing
"randy, so does that mean the pixhawk would support 2 compasses? is the second I2C port via the small I2C expansion board?"
11 hours ago

Randy commented on Gustavo Avellar's blog post Multiple UAV Path Planning and Optimization
"Really interesting research.  Thanks for sharing!"
12 hours ago

Randy commented on F. C. Bearsch "Tearig"'s blog post "Superman" flight mode - intuitive interface design - (Flight Mode Drift + Head-tracker for control)
"Noble goal, best of luck. Not sure if you're doing your own controller or using ArduCopter/ArduPlane but at least in ArduCopter we're planning in the next year to greatly improve the flight controller's ability to accept instructions…"
12 hours ago
Fabio replied to Randy's discussion ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing
"Hello, Today I made ​​the first flight with VR Micro Brain 5.1, I was very satisfied with the behavior in flight, very smooth, without bumps and jolts, listening to the sound of their engines was very smooth and progressive accelerations and…"
17 hours ago
Micha replied to Randy's discussion ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing
"Randy, if i can have a moment of your time. Roberto from Virtual Robotics and i are trying to resolve an issue i have with random failsafe triggering on 2 different copters.  I use a D4R-II flashed with the 27ms  firmware and a  Micro…"
20 hours ago

Randy replied to Sean Headrick's discussion Unexplained fly away logs here but don't quite know how to interpret. in the group ArduCopter User Group
"Darrell, I don't really know but I guess it's possible for interference if it's operating at the same frequency.  Interference of the TX/RX signal is pretty rare but it might happen some times."

Randy replied to Xin H's discussion DIrect motor drive fix pitch tail?
"Rob Lefebvre is probably the best person to answer this but I know that arducopter for tradheli does support fixed pitch tail rotors.  The TradHeli wiki is a little out of date but there is a "TailType" drop-down on the Heli…"

Randy replied to Sean Headrick's discussion Unexplained fly away logs here but don't quite know how to interpret. in the group ArduCopter User Group
"It's also possible that the dock might have thrown off the compass.  We've seen one report from a developer of this happening. The best way to know is, if you remember which way the vehicle was facing when it took off, you could…"

Randy replied to Sean Headrick's discussion Unexplained fly away logs here but don't quite know how to interpret. in the group ArduCopter User Group
"Sean, Really sorry about your troubles. I've had a look at the logs and it looks like a few things went wrong. The final crash looks like some kind of power failure.  Not a brownout but perhaps a loose prop or a failing battery.  You…"
Micha replied to Randy's discussion ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing
"Good to hear you resolved it. :) Do you like the way it flies? I do ;)for my part i got in touch with Roberto,sent him the logs and he is looking into it."
Fabio replied to Randy's discussion ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing
"Hello Micha, I solved I changed the ESC and everything is ok, for the calibration I made one at a time with the receiver. regards Fabio"
Paul La Fors replied to Randy's discussion ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing
"sorry Rainer, but that's the batt part. I was talking about the throttle failsafe. As i did practice (without any luck) on :-(( "
Roque CANALES replied to Randy's discussion ArduCopter-3.2 beta testing
"I confirm that rally point no work on PIXHAWK AC3.2.RC3, also when rtl is invoke by failsafe (battery) or manualy, drone start to climb....I switch to manual mode to stop climb.... RTL Alt is set at 15m and  I set rally point to 30m......"

Randy commented on Alex Zarenin's blog post Yet another Flight Control Board
"Alex, One thing we've found with the Pixhawk is that it's good to actually use completely different accelerometers to reduce susceptibility to aliasing do to vibrations.  So if one runs at 800hz and the other at 1000hz it's less…"

Randy commented on Chris Anderson's blog post Kickstarter project for quadcopter-based hoverbike
"If people actually start riding on their ArduCopter/Pixhawk copters it's really going to add to my stress level."

Profile Information

About Me:
Lead developer of ArduCopter. I coordinate releases, provide support for users having trouble with their copters, add new features (most often based on ideas and suggestions from the community). I also help others get their code integrated into ArduCopter.

You can find numerous video tutorials from me here:
Please tell us a bit about your UAV interest
Interested in quads and helis mostly. I got my start in this field by reading the electronics tutorials from Sparkfun and from watching the success of Jack Crossfire's vicacopter. I've learned an enormous amount from the combined wisdom of the people on the DIYDrones forums and members of the core dev team including Jason Short, Tridge, Doug Weibel, Leonard and many more.
Karuizawa, Japan

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Randy's Blog

Red Balloon Finder

Posted on June 17, 2014 at 5:04am 30 Comments

As many probably know, this year's Sparkfun Autonomous Vehicle Competition (AVC) is similar to last year's except that a new challenge has…


GPS Glitch detection in AC3.1

Posted on December 14, 2013 at 6:42am 32 Comments

AC3.1 is going out very soon and includes a new safety feature called GPS glitch detection.  There's a wiki page about it but I'd like to highlight how it works because it's near the top of the list of safety issues.  The method…


Dropping a Rover from Hexacopter - Part III

Posted on August 22, 2013 at 7:40pm 30 Comments

As a follow-up to the rover drops #1 and #2 I spent a day with Assistant Professor Nagatani-san of…


UAVs for measuring radiation levels in Japan

Posted on April 11, 2013 at 6:38pm 11 Comments

Two years after the March 11th tsunami in Japan that triggered the Nuclear disaster at the Fukushima power plant, there are still just over 300 thousand people who have not been able to return to their homes due to…


Dropping a Rover from Hexacopter - Part II

Posted on March 15, 2013 at 12:32am 14 Comments

As a follow up to an indoor test we did a about a month ago (blog post here), Assistant Professor Nagatani-san of Tohoku University, Izu-san of…


Comment Wall (23 comments)

At 8:44am on January 5, 2011, Jack said…


I have been working on my own Quad with the NG code and have setup the Sonar and have it working very well . I have an indoor version with sonar and IR sensors and would like to know were the IR sensors are conected, what pins. I see you were working on implementing this so If you could help with basic setup I can try my hand at testing. Thanks for your work on the Sonar and good luck on the obstical avoidence.


At 5:47am on January 30, 2011, Kári Davíðsson said…

Thanks Randy. 

I do not have write access to the svn repository.

So I will send you the changed AP_ADC lib probably later today.

I am not sure if a circular buffer is needed. The beauty of a 1st order IIR filter is that we only need one "old" sample and if a second order is needed only two old samples. But I will look a little better into the filter selection before committing anything to you.

At 5:45am on August 24, 2011, Jiro Hattori said…

Hi Randy

 One of the way to introduce technology of arduino as IMU is that something like what you have done. Most of the Japanese model flyer love to fly traditional helicopter. 

 Another approach may be exhibit something very unique at MAKE fair at Tokyo Institute of Technology.  There will be many open source hardware and software freaks as well.

At 9:10pm on March 7, 2012, Ravi said…

hi randy, i had been following your forum for align450. i just got my APM2 purple. i loaded the ardu heli firmware. everythings looks to be ok on mission planner. but there is no PWM on servo out pins. i armed the APM2 and does gets armed. the radio callibration bars move proportionately. evrything seems to be OK. but in 'status' there is no PWM on channel out pins. it shows '0' PWM on all out channels. can uou please suggets what might be the reason. the APM2 works fine with arduplane and arduquad firmware. ravi

At 5:53am on March 16, 2012,


I had a different problem with my APM2 that I was able to solve by following the procedure found in the wiki with a search for APM board problems.  My board would not connect to the planner and it works now.

Good luck


At 2:18pm on May 15, 2012, wilson javier madrid sossa said…

hello hello hug.
I can help with anything, I did several plannings flight with tri and firmware 2.0.49 and flew very well.
I did a quad and install 2.5.4 program a waypoint flight and the team took off like crazy.WP PIDs are by default and does not really move as you do. can you give me some information.

I appreciate your help

At 4:41pm on May 16, 2012, wilson javier madrid sossa said…

Please can you help me. I was flying my quadcopter and hold position when you turn the team went to ground. these are the last two log. I appreciateprompt help.


At 3:54pm on September 29, 2012, Marooned said…

Hi Randy

After your changes to Optical Flow I'm having troubles with compiling the sources:

ArduCopter.cpp: In function 'void init_ardupilot()':
ArduCopter.pde:-1: error: 'SPI3' was not declared in this scope
ArduCopter.pde:-1: error: 'SPI3_SPEED_2MHZ' was not declared in this scope

I have spi3.h file include in ArduCopter.pde but somehow it's not working that way. I did fetch&rebase with original repo.

At 3:12pm on September 30, 2012, Marooned said…

Sorry for troubles. It's working now. Looks like Arduino IDE had some hiccup.

I should probably move to some better IDE as I'm using Arduino only for compiling/uploading and all files are edited in my fav editor and I have to restart Arduino every time I change something as it doesn't follow outside files changes.

Anyway, sorry for bothering you.

At 6:30pm on December 1, 2012,
William Premerlani

Hi Randy,

Regarding a question that Shyam asked about gimbal lock when he was trying to use APM to stabilize a camera, he and I finally solved the issue. Here is a link.

No one on diydrones was able to help Shyam, he finally contacted me directly.

Best regards,

Bill Premerlani

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