ArduCopter 2.6 released!

Version 2.6 of the ArduCopter code is now available in the AP Mission Planner and in the downloads area!


Updates to MavLink 1.0 means you will need to use "ArdupilotMegaPlanner10.exe" to connect.  If you've updated your mission planner recently you should find this executable in the directory where the mission planner is installed.


The above video is done using a prototype 3dr ublox GPS which seems to have better accuracy than the standard mediatek.


Improvements over 2.5.5 include:
     - MavLink 1.0 support (use with ArdupilotMegaPlanner10.exe) [Tridge, Craig]

     - Stability improvements especially during level hover [Jason]

     - throttle range improvement (higher min and max) [Jason]

     - improved standard Loiter PIDs [Alan, Heino, Jason, Angel]

     - dataflash erase speed up ('+' messages removed but it only takes 6 seconds now) [Tridge]

     - Copter LEDs [Robert Lefebvre]

     - RTL loiter stage target set to home to improve final landing position [Jason]

     - flip & acro improvements [Jason]

     - circle mode target improvement for ground station [Jason]

     - Auto Approach [Adam Rivera / Marco]


Bug fixes include:

     - UBLOX driver fixes (lock should now be more reliable) [Tridge]

     - enable mavlink messages during dataflash erase which resolves issue in which new APMs fresh from the factory appeared unresponsive [Tridge]

     - proper printing of lat/lon values in dataflash logs [Randy]

     - removed duplicate GPS reads [Jason]

     - resolve flooding of telemetry link with low-battery warnings [Tridge]

     - RTL bug would land if rtl_approach_alt was more than 1 [Jason]

     - WP Radius could not be set larger than 1.3m [Jason/Randy]


PIDs are optimised for the 3DR/Jdrones quad with 850 motors and 10" props.  If you're using more powerful motors/props and are seeing bad flight behaviour in stabilize, start by turning down Rate Roll P in 25% steps.

This time we spent some time optimising the loiter PIDs.  Tuning loiter can be tricky so please refer to the discussions which will appear below for more community feedback on what parameters work best.
All feedback welcome below.  Enhancement requests and bug reports can be put into the arducopter issues list.  When possible please include logs (tlog and/or dataflash) and tell us whether you're using APM1 or APM2 and what version of the software you're using (presumably 2.6 but tell us anyway!).


Happy flying!

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  • The piezzo for deasarm or arm is no longer on the AN5 analog with this version ?

  • Developer

    ACRO with 2.6:

    this flight mode requires considerable experience and perfect control of the quad in any condition, if you want to try to make some quick flip try with Stabilize (the method suggested by Duran), Acro is for rc pilot with "high skill level and experience".
    Long looping and tonneaux are only possible in Acro mode.

    Bests, Marco

  • Excellent!

    just coming from the field. My quad (2560 APM1, V 2.6, standard Arducopter kit V 1.1, wind 8 knots, no pids tuned) was flying amazing.

    I tried ALT_HOLD and RTL (without landing) and SIMPLE mode and it was a pleasure.

    Throttle stick feels really good!

    Nice to see, how the quad recovers yaw after some aggressive manoevers in SIMPLE mode.

    Thanks guys for that great firmware!

  • Fantastic job, devs! 2.6 is absolutely amazing. I'm dying to give it a solid FPV test! I'm still having a problem though that keeps my confidence low.

    I had initially thought my twitchy/jerky pitch problem ( on my tri had gone away, as the first 8 minutes of flight with 2.6 release were rock solid. Near the end of the battery life (I get 10-11 with the 3.6Ah battery I was flying) it started happening again. Very slight, almost imperceptible, until just before the batt levels got low enough that I shut it down.

    At that point there was one very visible, but not destructive twitch on the pitch (tail jerks down as if I flicked the stick). I just flew a full 5.8Ah battery (17 minutes of hover) and about half-way through I started seeing twitches, mostly in pitch but once or twice in roll as well. As I posted as a comment to my problem thread above, it seems to happen only if I'm putting tiny corrective stick movements to maintain location in hover. If I leave the sticks alone, I never see the issue (nor do I see it when aggressively flying so far).

    I removed every single piece of non-essential gear (all video TX/OSD, second BEC for powering input rail, telemetry radio, etc.), I swapped channels on the TX/RX, etc. tuned pitch rate_P from 0.8 to 2.5, removed _D, etc. and nothing eliminated the problem.

    Any thoughts? I'll record some video of it happening and capture a tlog of the same event and upload it to the original thread. I had a bad crash due to a very violent twitch that brought the copter down hard and I've been terrified to go higher than 6ft since.

  • Wow!  Just tried rtl and watched it land ON the takeoff spot. So far, I have had only 1 bug-

    I have had this happen several times. I load a mission, then fly around, and at some point the mission gets corrupt. I did have good missions if I loaded and then flew right away,

    Typically I load something like this-




    After loading, I can read waypoints and it is fine. But after flying a couple batteries, it looks like this-


    Is this happening when I change batteries? Or (I do have ch7 waypoint save enabled) is it getting a phony ch7 at boot? I will disable ch7 and try to duplicate.

    I am confused as to what ch7 does to an existing mission - is there a way to clear the mission and do a new ch7 mission without a laptop?

  • Is the optical flow sensor supported in this version?


  • Distributor

    It just keeps getting better :-) Congrats  to all the developers

  • Hi guys,

    I have just uploaded the new ver 2.6 to my APM2 and its working a treat also noticed it loads a lot quicker with the MP Nav1

    great work and cant wait to get this into the air and report back :-) keep up the great work.

  • First of all, thanks to all de devs, testers and everyone involved!Excited to hear (and wish to test asap )about the new features.

    1- Could you further explain (link info) the "Auto Approach" thing?
    2- Any guides about how to perform the flips in acro and stab modes?
    I am anxious to test it but I think better to know what I am supposed to do with the Tx sticks before feeling too brave.

    Thanks again!

  • Thanks team,

    I received, and soldered pins to my 2560 APM1 board today, and loaded the code.

    Rebuild for my standard jDrones Quad tonight, AND the weather looks promising this weekend.

    I hope to be as happy as everybody else by the end of the weekend :-)

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Aug 25