So what does a cat toy and a PCB have to do with UAVs?
Very easy: One of my dogs had taken my cat's pole toy and left little but the handle stick. I was wondering what to do with that now. At that time, my MF450 frame was on my desk waiting to be completed and I shortly before read about external LED indicators. I also mounted my APM on top of the frame and was worried about…Continue
Well, it was not exactly the real maiden as I did a bit hovering in the yard before but it was the first "real" flight in open area.
Progress has been slow on my UxV Control Station project recently due to other obligations. However, I have decided to create an Arduino shield for that project to make it easier for interested people to recreate the UxV-CS. I'm not very experienced in hardware design, so things are going slow but steady.
I will not be selling any hardware but I will publish the design files under a CC license when…Continue
Ric Kaner set out to find a new way to make graphene, the thinnest and strongest material on earth. What he found was a new way to power the world.
Image: wikimedia.org - CC-BY-SA
Being slightly annoyed by recent posts that just show off but don't share information and trying to find an optimal long-endurance setup myself at the moment, I decided to create a multicopter setup list in my…Continue
I have now moved those functions into their own library for Arduino. My focus while writing and expanding this library is on ease of use. There is already Arduino code available but I found that a bit complicated to integrate. With the new library, all the user needs…Continue
In addition, the control station can now display all flight parameters in metric, imperial or imperial-nautical units. To change the display units, touch the indicator in the status bar. The setting is stored in EEPROM. Also, screen brightness setting and…Continue
Thanks to a friendly influenza virus, I was down a couple of days, but now, work continues. Shown in the picture is the (yet incomplete) overview page which is the first active page after switching the system on. Obviously, there are still a few empty fields in which I was planning to put some data from the FrSky telemetry but I am interested in feedback! What do YOU think about the current "overview" layout? What…Continue
Many of you might know the Sky9x upgrade board for 9x-model Chinese radios. It boasts an ARM Cortex M3 32bit processor and a whole bunch of additional features, such as audio out, SD card for saving configs, USB programming interface and so on. It runs on the very feature-rich and mature open source firmware Open9X. It has a PPM out, so with the right connector board, it can run with any…Continue
What happens if you lose line of sight to your UAV or your FPV videolink breaks down?
If you still have a working telemetry link, the PFD-display of the UxV-CS might just help you bring your bird back in one piece. It shows a simplified attitude indicator (the display isn't designed for heavy graphics), a compass rose with a heading bug showing the bearing to the home location and airspeed, speed over ground, vertical speed and altitude. If you know your…Continue
I have been asked a few times now how I got my GCS basics up and running. MAVLink is a rather complicated protocol to implement. The documentation is rather thin and partially outdated... Not an easy thing, if you are no experienced developer...
I'm no pro developer by a long shot. I speak reasonably well C and I did some smaller projects in JAVA. All in all, I can hold my…Continue
We are still making some nice progress with the project. I finally got the smallprotocol running, which is a propietary but well documented communications protocol with checksums and stuff for the display. Result: Rock solid performance and no trash on the screen if the Arduino sends too fast or some bits get lost.
At this point goes a HUUUGE thankyou to Pat Hickey who helped me out quite a bit on the mailing list. The MAVLink and other libs are really…Continue
This is just a short technology preview for the mission control part of my UxV Control Station project. It does already talk to the APM but besides decoding GPS data, it has no function yet. But development is going on.
Sorry about the focus... My videocam is rather cheap... It can't handle the brightness of the…Continue
After I FINALLY received the eDIPTFT dev-kit today and a few missing cables arrived too, it was all wiring it up and getting them to talk. With the help of the drones-discuss list, I quickly fixed up a simple MAVLink parser which just pulls the coords and sends them to the display in terminal mode.
Now, the fun part…Continue
The first parts for my UxV control station prototype have arrived and the planning and drafting is making progress. Thanks to a few friendly companies, much faster than I feared it would. Unfortunately, some major parts are still on the way, so I can't really start building yet. I'm using the time to work on the drafts and the functions, thinking of new ideas, kicking old ideas out.…Continue
This project currently is in draft status. I will update the article on my homepage, as it progresses.
Normal R/C transmitters are not the best way to control a UxV. For instance, they usually require additional components like ArduStation for the ArduPilot project, which means,…Continue
In the last 3 months I have done a bit of thinking about an as-simple-as-possible and as-small-as-possible "follow-me"-box. The design goal is to have something so small that it can be e.g. attached to clothing by velcro and so simple that it's just switch on and go. After some googling, I stumbled upon the Arduino Fio which seems ideal for this kind of thing. I am primarily maintaining…Continue