ArduCopter-3.0.1 released!

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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  • developers huge gratitude for their work, I fly, I fly, I want more battery ) here is my small test flight points up to 100m height
    and there's a small issue, I have a couple of times after replacing the battery, switching to calibrate the compass, the first time откалибровал on the spot, helped, for the second time in a few departures included blinks red diode again, turned off turned rearranged, off on, again and again until it works, and after a flight that was as usual is perfect )

  • Hi,


    Let me start with saying that I am amazed how far you all brought it with both the mission planner as well as the APM!


    I have had a problem with the 3.01 version in a new RTF Hexacopter from 3DRobotics.

    I bought it completely built just a couple of weeks ago and set it up according to the instructions on the web pages. It was flying nicely including auto missions. Vibrations are low, compass interference is low.


    Then a couple of days back I was hovering very low in stabilize mode when it suddenly rolled to the left and pitched down in the lawn (little damage). I don't know what happened, but it seems to me that the motors just stopped (see attached log).


    One thing I noticed from the beginning is that the different motors behaved differently (the esc's). Some motors did brake when throttle down whereas some did not??


    So now I have lost a bit of faith in this setup. Can anybody help me to bring it back?

    Why did the motors stop? Note that I have flown since then without problems thusfar.


    Thanks in advance,



    2013-08-06 22-35 21 Crash.log

  • upgraded to latest version 3.0.1 ok, went through firmware update all seemed ok and showed 3.0.1 but could not connect again to load params, APM2.5  board.   the only thing I see is the little yellow light flashing.  am i doing something wrong?

  • I need some help understanding the differences in 3.0.1 between the "Loiter PID" value and the "Rate Loiter" values on the "Arducopter PIDS" screen in MP. I'm not exactly sure what operational characteristics are affected by these values.

    I'm confused since the variable for the Loiter PID is HLD_LON (or LAT)_P which seems to be an assignment of how aggressive the copter is to holding its lat/long position. How is this different from the LOITER_RATE_P (and the rest) values which assign desired speeds in Loiter, presumably to maintain position? I've read up on what there is regarding these variables but there must be some subtlety which is going over my head.

    Ultimately I'm looking to tune out roll and pitch twitchiness which seems to be present during my loiter but not in Stable or Acro modes. I'm wondering if my answer lies in adjustment of these values. Thanks!

  • Please, tell me something about the Flight Mode "Sport", i can't fine anything...

  • Hi Graham, apologies if I ask a stupid Q. Is your declination at -17.xxxx. I had a similar effect and reducing the loiter rate reduced/eliminated this. I just took up my galactica (big H-quad) and loitered her in a gusty area. She performed quite well-less than 2m loiter radius - Oh, I did not do a compassmot at all (I'm too chicken sht to run this copter at full speed in a static hold)

  • Can someone please tell me how far the APM board could be mounted (in cm in z-axis)
    Also how far from center of frame could the board be mounted?
    And how to set this offsets in MP?

  • Can you help me with a friend crash? He swich to RTL his cuad and the copter moves very fast and crash, I notice that lose some sats at that moment but not shure that was the problem, the rel alt seems underground?, perhaps a baro problem? Thank's  

    2013-07-28 18-53 9.log

  • hI,

    On the newest ver of MP I cannot get it to "load custom firmware"  once the FW file is selected it just sits, the message says "status" and stays that wat till I unplug the USB, then an error comes up.  I had to use an older ver of MP to load FW which worked first try.



  • i need a help to find a program for arduino to use in quad-copter

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