Hey everyone!

I am a relative noob to the RC world, but lately I have a reason to dive in head first...

I have a small company that designs & builds various electrical / alt power gear, much of it oriented around HAM radio and portable / emergency power & communications.

We have been making progress on an R&D project that just won't die... we keep getting closer to something that might work.  ;-)

3691266336?profile=original

The goal of the project:

A small, collapsible flying platform that can lift a communications antenna about 30' off of the ground and hold it fairly steady for anywhere from a few minutes to a few hours.

3691266441?profile=original

The antenna is a flexible whip, about 20" long and weighing 34 grams (not pictured).

Power for the system comes from a DC source on the ground.

Control of the system is limited to throttle only.

Weight of the tether (DC power, signal for throttle, and antenna feedline) at max (30') height is 500 - 700 grams.

Weight of the air frame (motors,chassis, flight control, etc. is about 300 grams.

Currently building around Black Widow 2204 motors (with ESC built in).

Using Naze32 rev5 FC with 5030 props.

Primary construction of chassis is 3D printed ABS.

A few questions:

  Do I need to use a small buck converter to deliver 5 volts to the Naze?  Information I am finding online is not clear... remember I am not running a BEC

  What is a good way to control motor speed... use a servo tester as throttle?  A PWM speed controller? Remember this control is on the ground, hard wired up to the platform.

  Any thoughts on the Naze being able to maintain level hover despite wind or movement of the operator on the ground?  We are not running a GPS and don't want to.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts!

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Replies

  • Hi Bill,

    you should get real, your project is generally down.

    To stabilize your drone, airframe, you should attach antenna to point downward.

    So hot air balloon or kite is a nicer solution to your problem.

    BTW

    3D printed ABS airframe is heavy, so people generally opt for laser cut carbon

    Hot air baloon

    • Hi Bill,

      you should get real, your project is generally down.

      To stabilize your drone, airframe, you should attach antenna to point downward.

      Antenna needs to point up.  Pointing down causes issues with bringing the system down to operator and with tether management.  A capable FCU can easily handle the antenna up.

      So hot air balloon or kite is a nicer solution to your problem.

      Repeating myself.  Balloon or kite is the OLD solution.  Not feasible with this project.

      BTW

      3D printed ABS airframe is heavy, so people generally opt for laser cut carbon

      I am not flying batteries or a receiver.

        Power is essentially unlimited.  3D printed ABS is strong.

      Hot air baloon

      Nope.

      • The original questions I am seeking help with:

          Do I need to use a small buck converter to deliver 5 volts to the Naze?  Information I am finding online is not clear... remember I am not running a BEC

          What is a good way to control motor speed... use a servo tester as throttle?  A PWM speed controller? Remember this control is on the ground, hard wired up to the platform.

          Any thoughts on the Naze being able to maintain level hover despite wind or movement of the operator on the ground?  We are not running a GPS and don't want to.

        • Here is a link to the NAZE32 manual.

        • The Naze32 must be powered by a regulated 5 Volt supply.

          You may use a linear regulator or a buck converter or a buck/boost converter.

          It would be advisable to add at least a 1000 uF , Micro Farad, capacitor in parallel with a 0.1 uF ceramic capacitor on the Naze32 board's power input because the power supply leads are so long and they are susceptible noise. 

          It would also be more preferable to use a regulator or buck converter on the copter [with capacitors on both sides of the regulator/boost converter]  rather than having the supply regulation on the ground.

          • I edited my above comment, but I don't know if it saved. So I'm re-posting my edit.

            The above was just for powering the naze32 board. not the ESC's

            Generally one should add about 220 Micro Farads of low ESR capacitance for every addition 4 inches of additional power lead lenght for ESC's.

            For 30 feet:  That would be about an addition 20000 Micro Farads for each ESC to cancel out the inductive effects of the power supply leads.

            I can find a good discussion link about this from Rcgroups tomorrow.

  • Hello. Why don't you use a Helium baloon instead?
    You will need to output more than throttle only. I would highly recommend you to use either a radiocommand, or at least to add electronic that transmit all necessary input servo signal to the flight controller. Without gps you will kot keep ground position, at least if you have RC control you can pilot your copter.
    • I mean that the flight controler does need more than throttle input. Without any signal on Roll/Pitch/Yaw/Aux functions I think that it may not spin the props at all.
      • Interesting... I have only run the prototype on the bench, using Baseflight to test the motors.  I hope / assume that if I give the FC power and a connection to the motors/ESC that it will begin working to hold pitch & roll?  No?

        ???????

        This is why I posted, I think.  THANKS for helping me identify weakness in the concept...

        • So how do I test if the FC will take over?  Say I have the prototype on the bench, and am using a servo tester as a throttle.  Motors are spinning, props are attached (I know, I know).  Unit is in a safe place for testing.  What causes the FC to begin flight control?

          Sorry for being such a noob...

This reply was deleted.

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