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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  • My questions are about the compassmot routine.

    Does compassmot need to be run again if the prop size is changed?

    Can I run it with 10" props and then fly 12" props without running compassmot again?



  • Stefan, thanks for your reply. I did change the loiter speed and auto speed from 500 to 750 cm/s. It was better, but it seems the pitch is to small as I want. I mean the nose must be more down like in stabilze mode, the angle must be more.

    please can someone give me advise which setting should be changes.

    the stabilize mode is perfect, never flew "stabilize" with the naza, now i have to fly on myself.

    Flying missions is perfect too, but as mentioned the pitch is to small, i have the idea if the nose is more down the quad will fly much more stable.

    Dick Gerritsen

    dutch mountains, the Netherlands

  • Hi Randy,

    I notice that the gps gets a 3D fix it blink in blue, will that be possible to tweak in FW?

    I'm thinking if it's possible to include a patter of blink/s that indicate hdop and satellites.

  • Do I need to do a full setup again after loading 3.1-rc1 over 3.0.1? ie, leave all my PIDs as are. Can I just load and redo the compass cal and then fly?

  • Some results of a test flight.

    Firmware 3.1rc2

    Frame TBS Discover

    Motors 1000 kv, ESC 30A

    weather: less wind

    standard settings, only loiter p =0,5

    frame: V

    Stabilize mode: good reaction. Flies well.

    loiter mode: slowly reaction of the sticks, at low flights, the quad goes up and down, high flight: quad keeps hight stable

    auto mode: perfect flight, about 7 wp.  But slowly, might fly faster

    some questions:

    Loiter: how to make the quad faster

    Loiter: can the hight also be controlled by gps at lower hight (like naza)

    Loiter: how can the reaction of the sticks be more aggressive

    Auto mode: how to make the spead faster?

    Dick Gerritsen

    Munstergeleen, the Netherlands

  • One of the possible values of the variable WP_YAW_BEHAVIOUR is 3: Face along GPS course.

    Can someone explain what this value does and how it differs from 1: Face to next waypoint?

    Best regards,

    Henk de Groot

  • Hi,

    I am hoping someone can give me some advice. I have been reading that flight time can be increased quite a bit by using motors that are around 400kv, with larger props.

    I would like to try to change my motors with some of these but I am not sure what I am looking for, is 400kv good or should I go lower 340kv or a bit higher 580kv. also I would like to use the esc's I have which are blueseries 40a flashed with simonk FW.

    My goal is longer flight time. and I am not sure if I want to use these on a quad or octa-quad. probably a quad

    thanks for any help,


  • I flown my copter today and while doing auto land, at about 1m from the ground, the copter suddenly moved. I immediately switched back to stabilize but too late. fortunately damages are only blade and a bit of landing gear.


    can anyone check my log and tell me what went wrong? is it a famous GPS glitch?


    by the way I saw my GPS data does not have similar duration of record than others like altitude... is that normal?



    2013-09-20 21-31

  • This's my video for test AC3.1-rc2 Loiter test when have strong wind about 7-12 knot. It still tuning not finish.

  • I was setting up a new frame a couple of days ago, and got to the point of running the compasmot.  Got the throttle up to about 50%, and all four of the motor mounts snapped.  Ooops. 8-(

    It is a quad, 24" square on the Avroto 2814-11S motors, running 4S through simonized BlueSeries ESC's. ArduCopter 3.0.1 on a DIY Drones 2.5 board.  The motor mounts are made from 2mm G10, and the props are APC 12x6 Thin electrics.

    I had the quad on the ground, with the props upside down to push it down while running the compassmot routine.


    Now that I have rebuilt the frame, and made it stronger, my questions are about the compassmot routine.

    Does compassmot need to be run again if the prop size is changed?

    Can I run it with 10" props and then fly 12" props without running compassmot again?



This reply was deleted.


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