ArduCopter 3.0.1 has been released and is now available in the Mission Planner,, GitHub and the new Downloads Area.

Warning #1: Compass calibration and reducing interference is far more important than with 2.9.1b

Warning #2: GPS glitches can cause sudden and aggressive position changes while in loiter mode.  You may wish to reduce the Loiter PID P to 0.5 (from 1.0) to reduce aggressiveness (see image below of where this gain can be found in mission planner).

Warning #3: optical flow is not supported but will be back in the next release (AC-3.0.2 or AC-3.1.0).

Warning #4: loiter turns does not maintain altitude.  This bug will be fixed in AC-3.0.2.

Warning #5: This release has only been lightly tested on Traditional Helicopters.

Improvements over 2.9.1b include:

  • Inertial Navigation for Loiter and Auto meaning much more accurate control (Randy,Leonard,JonathanC)
  • 3D navigation controller follows straight lines in all dimensions between waypoints (Leonard,Randy)

         WPNAV_SPEED, WPNAV_SPEED_UP, WPNAV_SPEED_DN, WPNAV_ACCEL allows configuring speeds and acceleration during missions

  • "compassmot" to compensate for interference on compass from the pdb, motors, ESCs and battery.  (Randy,JonathanC) (Set-up video here)
  • Safety improvements:
    • simple Tin Can shaped Geo Fence
    • pre-arm checks to ensure all calibration has been performed before arming (can be disabled by setting ARMING_CHECK to zero).  (video description here)
    • GPS failsafe - switches to LAND if GPS is lost for 5 seconds
    • stability patch improvements to stop rapid climbs in very overpowered or overtuned copters
  • Circle mode improvements including "panorama" when CIRCLE_RADIUS set to zero (Randy,Leonard)
  • SONAR_GAIN parameter added to allow better tuning of sonar surface tracking
  • CH8 auxiliary switch (same features as CH7)
  • works on PX4 (some minor features still not available) (Tridge,PatH)

How to upgrade:

1. Make sure you are using Mission Planner 1.2.59 or newer (get it here)

2. Click on the MissionPlanner's Hardware, Install Firmware screen.  The version numbers should appear as "ArduCopter-3.0.1", then click the appropriate frame icon and it should upgrade as per usual.

3. Reduce the Loiter and Alt Hold PIDs if you have modified them from the defaults.  The modified PID values for the 3DR frame can be seen in the image below.

Note: Nav parameters have been combined with Loiter so do not be concerned if you can't find them.

4. Although not directly related to this release, if you purchased an APM prior to March of 2013, update your PPM encoder to the latest firmware (instructions here).

5. Try out the new version in stabilize mode first, then alt-hold, then loiter and finally RTL and Auto.

Numerous How-To videos are available:

Special Thanks to MarcoDaveC and the large number of testers on the pre-release thread who put their copters at risk during the extended testing period.  Some of their videos can be found hereherehereherehere and here.  Thanks also to MichaelO for the MP changes required for this release.

All feedback welcome.  Please put your questions, comments (good and bad!) below.

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Wasn't the whole point of your video to illustrate that your copter just did something unexpected? I was not meaning to question your ability to fly when all systems are functioning correctly as you appear to be a competent pilot. Even in perfect trim, I do not fly my rig that close to anyone but myself. No matter how much attention you pay to your set-up, there is always the possibility of a failure. Any number of things can happen that can cause you to loose control. My wife, baby and older children are kept well away at all times - they are far too precious for me to let them fall victim to my hobby. I do not believe myself ignorant on this matter (but then the ignorant never do so I acknowledge the possibility...) If you consider the risk acceptable then I will leave it at that.

The only problem during that flight was the loiter at 700' but after what Randy said it probably wasn't a problem at all and probably would have leveled out fine if I let it.  If there was a problem and it started going towards them I would have ditched it first.  You take a risk anytime you fly, especially something that can fly itself.  It could very easily start flying off by itself at any time and fly through a car window or something.  So technically these aren't safe to fly anywhere....  Probably a better chance of getting in a car wreck than hit by the quad.

Could I have a few thoughts on ‘flashed’ ESCs.

On my first quadcopter build I used some pre-flashed simonK 30A escs. They were ‘fit & forget’ as all has been OK with them and the copter can be tuned very well.


Now I am on an octa build using the same motors MT4008-12. I have bought the t-motor 30A opto pro ESC, which although advertised as ‘fast’ and optimised for Multirotor but still have ‘jack of all’ firmware. The octa will be big and heavy so Im guessing a super fast response is less important than with a 450 size. My new ESC use the silabs chips, which I don’t think can be flashed with simonk but can take the BLheli. Its not easy to do so is it worth it?

Basically I wanting to hear that many people are getting on fine with standard ESCs, especially on larger machines.


By the way, what are others doing as far as power distribution is concerned on big machines? If the autopilot demands full power that will be 240A. I suspect the APM power module will not be happy with that.


I use some Japanese made ESCs from which are great for big machines but they're expensive and I wouldn't expect people to order them.  I believe they use the SiLabs chips under the covers.

For the power module, I've recently updated the Non-3dr current monitor wiki page including adding a video.  This is what I do for the big hexacopters I sometimes work with.

attoPilot 180A will be enough for almost any multirotor,you will hardly go over 200A with octa....another solution i am thinking about is from Graupner(i guess there is other similar,i have graupner mx20 rc) Electric air module it  can mesure up to 320A and it looks much more solid bcs that attopilot sensor is SMALL and i have no confidence in all my current do over it..attopilot serves well and mesure only voltage...this one;

  • 2x temperature; optionally selectable from 0 to either 120°C or 200°C and voltage measurement to 60 V DC
  • 1x speed controller input, 1x speed controller output for single cell undervoltage regulation
  • 1x current, voltage, and capacity measurement up to 150 A (320 A for 1 s)and up to 60 V DC
  • 1x single-cell monitoring for 2 - 14S lithium batteries (LiPo, LiIo, LiFe)
  • 1x telemetry connection for receiver


Note that price on graupner page is always biger than anywhere else....this can be found for 60$.....


Thanks Randy.

Oh yes, I forgot about the attopilot, but its still showing 180A through a XT60. guess its OK for short burst.

Is the ESC you use 'standard' firmware. I think the super fast firmware generally dosent have any settings( like brake etc). My t-motor ones were friggin expensive. Just hope they are fast enough.


What is the known error? The descent or documentation issue?


I will try to reload the firmware after a reset and see if it solves it. At some point in time it did work correctly.



The known error is that the parameters for SR0 & SR3 are as follows, but there is a parsing error and they don't print correctly



Like I said, my octa-quad has a similar problem but it also rises slowly, one thing I found is if I use the FW from this date (linked below) it rises and descends much better when in althold, loiter, land modes.

I am not sure what it is but mine doesn't work correct with the stable version or with later FW versions I have tried so far.


From a system point of view, the firmware is agnostic to the type of telemetry radio, whether it is Xbee, 3DR, or RFD900, and there are a few thousand of them already in service.

Hello All. First off, thank you to all who have worked so hard for this community!!

I just had an event happen with a new quad I assembled.

I know the setup was incomplete on this quad. I had intended to fly only in stabilize to test my camera gimble.

I had an RTL trigger with a resulting significant crash and would like to know why.

If someone could please help analyze my Flash log(no telemetry during this flight) for clues, I would greatly appreciate it.

My setup is as follows:

APM 2.5 with ublox and seperate external compass.

Dji 450 motors and arms and 10x4.5 props with a custom spider style frame.

30amp simon K flashed f30 speed controls from RCmanchild

Tarot Gopro gimbal with separate 1000mah 3s pack

Single 2800mah 3s main pack(incorrectly setup as a 5600mah dual pack in apm)

FRsky tfr4-b receiver with ppm single input to apm

Futaba T8FG transmitter

900mhz 3dr telemetry( Not connected during this flight)

The flight went like this. powered up quad, turned on Gopro(in wifi mode) and took off to get an aerial shot of a bus leaving an event. It was windy, but quad was quite stable. I got up to about 100 feet alt and about 100 feet away and quad did a piroette(spelling?) then stabilized momentarily, then pitch hard forward and away it went from 100' to the ground at about a 25degree angle. I know the logs show RTL triggered. Can someone tell me specifically why?

What I assume was a Radio failsafe. But it appears to me the roll in and pitch in are still registering my stick inputs.

Thank you for any help on this,





Can you post the .log file so we can look at the extra information. also a picture of the orientation of the compass would help. Thx

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