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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  • FYI: I recently upgraded to 3.1rc4 of the firmware and noticed that the battery voltage and current was always zero in the MAVLink Status messages. I went back to to the first release of 3.1rc2 on 9/18/2013 and confirmed that the batter voltage and current was correct. I checked the last 3.1rc2 revision on 10/10/2013 and the battery voltage and current were zero. So somewhere between 9/18 and 10/10, it appears that a bug was introduced regarding the battery voltage and current readings.

  • One warning I can give on autotune - escpecially with a bigger quad is be careful when the quad switches from roll to pitch autotune.

    It can come back right into your face.

    Make sure you keep it well out in front of you all through the process.

    It did this to me and scared the $^%$ out of me...

    But straight after autotune I went out and did this vid - so it works :)

  • So, tried to find the answer in here already, but 245 pages makes that difficult. When updating from 2.9b, and re-tuning the PID's, what general direction are the PID's going to change? E.x. is the Rate roll P going to be higher in 3.0.1 or lower when changing from 2.9b? I just want to better define my range of values to put on chan6 when I'm tuning to get a more accurate value. Thanks!

  • HI Guys, I use APM + Arducopter 3.x on quad and hexa with with a lot of satisfaction.

    Now I'm building an Okto + and I would use a OKTO XL2 frame Mikrokopter for its lightness and APM 2.6 kit.

    So, considering the square form of the frame and the difference length of the arms, according to you it will fly well with Arducopter ?

    Does anyone here uses it or has tried it?

    Will I have problems with this frame ?

    Ciao - Giuseppe

  • Sorry in advance for the noob question, but I've searched and am a bit surprised of what I've found so far and that I even have to ask, but:

    I'd strongly prefer to mount my APM (and soon Pixhawk) "backwards" so that the input pins face the rear of my aircraft. I've seen where I can define how the MAG is oriented, but I need to define how my BOARD is oriented. Is there not an easy way to do this in MP?

    Thanks in advance,


  • Houston i have a problem!!
    Today I tried Autotune for the first seven minutes everything ok, then started to do some testing with contractions very fast with about a 35-40 ° tilt back and forth two or three times then came down doing a flip, I could not disarm so I disconnected the battery, broke two propellers and I think then I look at the wrong aluminum frame. Unfortunately I did not save the parameters because I disconnected the battery without disarming.
    The flip can be seen in the movie 8:05
    I attach logs and movie.

    2013-10-17 17-52 1.log

  • @airmamaf - watch out wall-o-words

    (Some for me and then for others too...)

    You are absolutely right about location - difference. And you are also right the parameters are not needed. Remember Einstein related it as all being relative. And being relative 'Translation' mathematics is introduced. I believe it is even easier than full translation equations for the sensors and programmers. When tuning 'Trim' the motions are simply relative actions and resultant reactions. Examples, albeit over simplified: Action - I feel I'm turning/deviating from a base orientation or command. Resulting reaction - Adjust RF and RL motors speeds to counter until I am not turning. Action - I feel I am pitching from a base orientation or command location forward. Resulting reaction - Adjust RF and LF motors to level my sense of pitch. The similar action/reaction for other attitude and location adjustments.

    By the above types of sensing, calculations, and adjustments the relative reactions required to properly maintain aircraft attitude are initially sensed and calculated. Since this is true we do not have to have all vital electronics on CG of all aircraft. Instead we can have cargo, passengers, fuel, etc. And the actions are done to the CG since our rotors are radiating out from and act on a central point. The motors maintain balance.

    Ha, ha. That reminds me - I was hovering my copter around low yesterday. I was amused by how skee wambus several of my motors are from all the dump/crashes. The FC is able to do the math and adjust the motor actions to result in a nicely flying quad even though I've got it all goofed up. --- Remember that without these new whiz-bang fast calculating and reacting electronics our new age vehicles would not be able to be piloted or controlled.

    A human pilot or driver is THE sensors for our old age vehicles. We sit up front so we can see yet, we can sense/feel to maintain the pitch, roll, yaw attitudes of our vehicles by making accurate, mostly, mental and physical adjustments we calculate from our relative locations away from CG. THAT is how it works. (Thanks! I just had an "Ah, Hah! I got it moment.") --- Yet, one more last --- since the modern FC works so fast we do not even have to have our vehicle balanced around CG or even be aerodynamic. Pretty Cool. I like the F-117 too. OK - one more example: Our own sensors are in between our ears not located at/in our CG (stomach) yet, we mostly maintain ourselves.  ;-)

  • who asked not realized because know English not very
    100% height walking from several possible reasons:
    1) air flow (sponge on the Baro )
    2) light on the Baro (shut out the lights)
    3) vibration ( to put a charge on a sponge)

  • @randy,

    How do i enable the auto-tune in RC 4? Do i have to compile the code manually or is is already enabled in the Mission planner version?


  • Today I did the autotune on my quad with success. After I tested Alt hols and loiter and all is good.

    Attached is the log. total 9 minutes and the autotune took c.a 4 minutes. Very interesting to see.

    I had a gopro camera onboard and I plan to upload the video, but slow internet I do not know if I cold do it.

    Thanks to dev team for an outstanding upgrade.

    2013-10-16 11-18 1.log

This reply was deleted.


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