I've been using the APM platform for a few months now, and i'd really like to try a software project. Something i have in mind is following a predefined path for extended exposure photography. I've seen many instances of this, such as below, but i'd like to do something autonomous.
Obviously, this could have a lot of possible solutions! AUTO mode with GPS waypoints can already achieve something to this effect - but i do not believe it can obtain the fidelity that i would like.
The solution that I keep coming back to is a single external camera with 2 LEDs of known distance apart mounted on the quad and a fixed compass orientation. By keeping the quad pointed towards the camera, I believe 2 points in space would be enough to determine x y z coordinates.
Is this technically feasible? Would LEDs and a webcam provide enough information to calculate position?
I believe you can transmit this kind of position data through MAVlink, which would then be interpreted by the APM control software. I know I'm probably in over my head, but where would this customization take place? Would it be a custom flight mode? Could I somehow get the APM to accept these as intermediate waypoints or something? Are there any guidelines for the structure of the APM program? I am very mildly experienced with C.
I know this is heavy on 'wants' and not on technical details. What i'm looking for is input on feasibility, and checking to see if anything like this already exists. I don't necessarily want to reinvent the wheel, but I thought this might be an interesting project.