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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  • Developer

    Valentina Russo, from my multirotors piloting school, testing my "Marcopter Speedvision Full Carbon Heavy Quad", this is one of the first flight test of this UAV.
    Valentina is the first woman in the world who can fly a multirotors manually, i mean in stabilized flight (documented with a video), i'm very proud of her progress after only few months.
    The firmware revision is "APM Copter V3.1-DEV", now i think mature enough for release.
    Special thanks to Virtualrobotix Italia, 3DRobotics, the whole APM Copter Dev/Testers Team, Gianluca Moretti for the "Speedvision" frame and Lorenzo Gualiumi (the filmer).

  • I was just wondering where the best place to get assistance in tuning a copter is. I can post video of the machine flying, I was just wondering if here, or the gmail-forum, or some other place was preferred to make the post?

  • Gave the 3.0.1 Another chance.  Finally got it to fly stable.  BUT Loiter is all over the place and in RTL it just starts to fly away (Aparently flying back to the manufacturer?)  The only two settings i adjusted were the Roll/pitch rate control to 0.0800 and the Roll/Pitch Rate Dampening to 0.003 to get it to quit wobbling rapidly.

  • Ok well after great debate (in my own head) I upgraded.  I did all the calibrations as per here and did a flight test with stabilize, loiter then RTL. I just wanted to post my log here so maybe the guru's can take a look at any potential issues.  This is a 3DR Hexa about 2 months old and apm 2.5.   It flew well the loiter was spot on and compared to the 2.9.1 better no fluctuations when i hit the change over switch. RTL bubbled a tiny bit but was smooth all way to the ground.

  • Sorry if I repeat the question. I have the problem when the mode GeoFence. The parameters of 100m radius and height of 100 meters. Checkbox is enabled in the settings. At initial power-up and switch off Fenceoption on TX, Fence work restrictions and copter fly RTL. If i turn on and turn off the Fence switch, then after that everything is fine. Firmware is first 3.0.1 release.

    So it should be or is it a problem?

  • Randy,

    thanks for the fast reply.

    I raised a new issue for that :-)

    Battery Failsafe Issue

  • I have one question about the Battery Failsafe on APM 3.0.1

    • When a battery failsafe is triggered one of the following will happen:
      • Disarm motors – if you are in stabilize or acro mode and your throttle is zero
      • RTL – if you are in AUTO mode, have a GPS lock and are at least 2 meters from your home position
      • LAND – in all other cases

    This works absolutely fine.

    But is it possible in case of Battery Failsafe that the APM switch to RTL too when the Mode is Stabilize and not in AUTO Mode ? 



  • Do the motor numbers in in Log MOT ..correspond with the APM outputs ?  I am just trying to understand why my copter fell to the right hand side when it shows in log left hand motor issue ?

  • Hello all! I have problem with my copter. Today very strange fly. I think what problem with my RX (Turnigy 9x).

    Of all the changes were significant only soldering wire receiver antenna. Before that was visually damaged shell wires near the box of the receiver, but the management was good. I cut about 1.5 centimeters and resolder the wire to the receiver. Soldering is good. But I think the problem is that the impact reducing the length of the wire and the reception was worse.

    Or even suspect malfunction Fence. When the switch is turned off sometimes works RTL, when fly off to a radius.
    And today, tried a different radius and position of the switch, but the result was the same.

    Please see my logs and say what you think.

    2013-08-27 21-02-10.tlog

    2013-08-27 21-11-46.tlog
  • This is the problem I have (the same as Randy in an early version):

    Randy's answer: "It's an aerodynamic effect on the barometer so I think more foam may help. Another option is the increase the INAV_TC_Z as high as 7.0. Please note though that making this TC higher also increases the possibility that vibrations will cause the altitude estimate to be incorrect for longer which can lead to your copter flying up when bad vibrations occur."

    I Raise INAV_TC_Z from 5 to 7 and now is a little better but the problem is still there... Y also try to isolete baro from external winds with a lot of internal foam, but with no luck.

    This is how I mount my APM:

    MuBNV.jpgMay I try to use the APM with out the case with the baro covered to avoid turbulence?


This reply was deleted.