ArduCopter 3.0.1 has been released and is now available in the Mission Planner, firmware.diydrones.com, 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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Yes, something changed in those parameter values and I believe somebody crashed for this very reason. Because the person had adjusted those parameters and the firmware update did keep the old values (like 200 or similar) but these values were way too high for the new firmware and the result was uncontrollable copter (and if I am not mistaken a Crash!..)

This concerns me a bit because I modified those parameters during 2.9.1 and now I have 3.1-rc5. Per what I learned from Randy once any parameter is changed a firmware update does NOT touch it and keep the old values.

If the scale is changed and the old parameter values stays the same, this could be very bad...

Perhaps you should ask this question again. You really need to get a clear answer before trying the Acro mode...

It is an important issue... 

I had a look back at AC3.0.1 vs AC3.1 and although we've kept the same parameter name, we've changed the eeprom number.  That should mean that the new default scaling should replace the old.  It should not carry over from AC3.0.1 to AC3.1 even if you changed the ACRO_BAL_ROLL/PITCH in AC3.0.1.

The only way that it should carry over is if you saved down a parameter file from AC3.0.1 and then wrote all the params to AC3.1.  So it would be a more manual procedure.

Bernardo, Jay,

     Yes, I pulled -rc6 'cuz there were just a few too many error reports too quickly.  Some of them may turn out to be none-issues but better to be on the safe side.  -rc7 will be the next version out and it will likely be out within a couple of days.

Thanks for the input Randy. It is good to know that there is no danger for us (at least for me because so far I never used "save parameters").

In this case, the person who had an issue must have saved and rewritten the parameters. No other logical explanation I can come up with.

I will check my Acro Ball parameters just in case...

Randy is also putting in a pre arm check to make sure it isn't bigger than the roll, pitch, yaw, stab P.

The other thing that is worth noting is that this hasn't caused a crash. What it can do is cause the copter to vibrate but switching back to stabilize will stop the problem. There was one crash caused by this but what happened is the vibration caused a mechanical issues (one of the motors came off if I remember correctly), however the pilot switched into and out of ACRO 3 times before the mechanical problem caused the crash.

So as of rc 6/7 there will be now risk at all.

Hi Archilles, could you provide a flash log that clearly shows your rock back after fast forward flight problem.

@Randy,

Thanks for the info, I would wait for RC7 where I believe some improvements are made.

Keep up the great development work. We all look forward to some more good news :)

Regards,

Shyam

That´s great new. I asked you what happened because I couldn´t find many reports in this forum or in the google groups and I thought maybe you have found a last minute big bug. 

Anyways as usual it would be worth the wait. Thanks!

John,

     You're right that it doesn't seem to be related to the MPU6k.  There's no blips in your IMU info.

     The problem only seems to happen when you're trying to fly forward in LOITER.  The little twitches are not really that large, about 5 degrees or so of shaking.  That's not acceptable of course but I don't think it's going to cause your copter to crash.

     I'm not sure if this is the cause but I noticed that some params seem incorrect:

      RATE_YAW_P : 1.05 which is 5x the default of 0.2

      THR_ALT_P : 3.0 <-- default is 1.0

      THR_RATE_P : 0.6  <-- default is 6

      LOITER_LON_IMAX : 1000 <-- default is 400

    If you're feeling up for giving it another try, could you change the above params back to their defaults and try this slightly modified version of -rc6?  after unzipping you should be able to upload it using the "Load custom firmware" link on the mission planner's "Install Firmware" page.  This is -rc6 plus a few minor changes including turning MOT_SPIN_ARMED back on.  For the purposes of this test it's the same as -rc6 but since you can't get -rc6 anymore through the BetaFirmware link I'm providing it here.

     I'd also like to see a flight with the IMU message turned on if possible.

     thanks for helping out.

@Emin,
We can understand your frustration. I think the problem may not be software setup. People dont find problem like your so yours should work fine too.
-Check motor esc pdb connections properly.
- Reflash EEprom via terminal screen, MP.
- Load default stable release 3.01 (no RC release yet).
- Make sure you choose + or × configuration as per your quad body setup.
- Do radio n config.
- Check tht escs have simon fw and provide stable smooth signal.

I dont see a reason for not working after this.

Shyam

after that i reverted back to  3.0.1 and i could not arm at all.....than back to rc5 and i can arm again but crazy motors still here...than i erase eeprom and do a clean instal of rc5 and finaly everything is normal again...god knows what was wrong bcs i did not change any parameters.....

John,

     Leonard and I spent some time after my previous post and we found that your copter's GPS appears to be missing messages sometimes.  Tridge fixed a bug between -rc5 and -rc6 which resolved a problem in which we were sometimes processing the same GPS message twice and so we probably just weren't noticing the missing messages.  This in turn has uncovered an issue in how we deal with missing messages which is causing the jumpy behaviour.  We're testing out a fix now and I'll have a new binary for you to test tomorrow.  No need to test the other binary that I provided a link to.  Also no need to correct those parameters except the YAW one which can't be good.

     I guess you're using a UBlox, is it the LEA or the NEO?

    

-Randy

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