Quad-copter equipped with the advanced AS3X by Blade (Horizon Hobby)
@Paul, quads don't have any inherent mechanical stability. There are no aerodynamics, none at all. Even helis have aerodynamic stability. And other than rudder control, they can almost fly by themselves.
When quads were first invented, they absolutely required gyro control on all axes. They used to use several heli tail gyros tilted on edge. IMU's developed out of a desire to minimize the installation.
@Robert -- Thanks for the additional info. I appreciate it.
@Mike -- I guess I'm guilty of perpetuating off-topic posts by responding to some, but I also commented recently to the web master (a.k.a. Chris) that I was seeing a lot of posts on quads as RC aircraft only and, particularly, FPV, all getting away from the core topic of autonomous flight. However, I can see that there's a fine line sometimes on which posts to allow and which to disapprove. This is one of those cases, I'm sure, in that a new platform became available that could, perhaps, be made autonomous.
Doesn't look like it would hold up very well in a crash. Then you have to buy their parts to fix it. I prefer the make your own kit method when it comes to multis.
I have a few Blade products and they're are fairly resistant and inexpensive to fix and fun to play with.
This is great! We've been wanting a smaller quad type vehicle for our indoor flight experiments.
As for hackability- we've been hacking their 'mCX platforms for almost three years now. Essentially we designed our own controller board to replace that green board. That basically included an ATmega 8-bit (cannot remember which one but similar to the ones on an Arduino), a Cypress Semi wireless chip, a piezo gyro, motor drivers, and carbon resist strips for the mount-on servos. We were able to replicate all of that, including the carbon resist strips, but those strips were a bit problematic- the PCB house took several tries to get them right, and our implementation does not last as long as the out-of-box one, but it was good enough to do work. So I would expect the mQX to be hackable as well, even more so since we don't have to deal with those carbon resist strips! I would expect, actually, that one could build a smaller Ardupilot specifically for the mQX and get it down to a couple grams.
PS. The Youtube video is private, but eFlite has this WMV on their web site: http://www.bladehelis.com/ProdInfo/Files/BLH7500-HI.wmv
Will only last 6 minutes on the included battery.
I really don't get it with quads and the raptures people go into about the latest and greatest set of 4 motors on a few sticks but hey my mate Dave has the Plank o' Wood quad which flies beautifully....
Check it out here http://loolee.org/wp/?p=433
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