Inspired by the Sparkfun Autonomous Vehicle Competition, where massive points were given for autonomous takeoff and landing, we're going to do something like that here for round 7. So here's the DIY Drones T3 Total Autonomy Round--"Look Ma, No Hands!"
Contestant who takes off autonomously, flies autonomously and lands autonomously closest to their take-off spot---TWICE--wins. Distance from final rest and launch should be averaged over both runs. It doesn't matter what the aircraft does between launch and landing. One loop is fine.
Contestants must submit KML track AND video. Just set up your video camera on a tripod viewing your launch/landing spot. We want to see: A) your transmitter on the ground. B) the plane landing as close to possible to the launch spot. C) You looking very relaxed, doing nothing. Extra points for you in a lounge chair with a drink.
Entries must be submitted in the comments here by 12:00 midnight PST on Sunday, July 4th. Winners will, as always, get points for the cumulative T3 leader board and some cool prize TBA. Remember to tell us what autopilot and aircraft you used.
Q: What do you mean by "take off"? Is hand-launching allowed?
A: Yes. As long as your RC transmitter is on the ground, you can hand launch
Q: Why twice?
A: So you don't crash your plane into the launch spot and call that an "autonomous landing".
Q: What does T3 stand for?
A: Originally "Trust Time Trial" but since this round doesn't involve time, it's just for continuity. Trust is still operative, however.
Q: Is this an awesome time to try out the new autonomous takeoff and landing feature in ArduPilot 2.6?
A: Why yes, it is!
[Picture of Jordi Munoz not doing an autonomous landing at the Sparkfun AVC.]