DBX Drones's Posts (4)

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DBX Drones: Progress so far

Hi there! This is the DBX Drones team. Some time ago we presented you our design concept for a hybrid cargo drone. and since then we have been working on the idea and two months ago we decided to start working full time in this project and found a start-up: DBX Drones! During these last two months we have been creating the team, moving to a start up incubator, Lanzadera in Valencia, and starting to test our controller.

Right now we divide our time into two main objectives, the business team, trying to learn what do our future clients really want to have, and the engineering team, that is developing the flight control system and testing the platform so our client desires are satisfied.

After the last survey we made, we realised that people prefer to avoid touching low level code and have plug and play solutions, but at the same time have access to the inner workings of the system. For the time being, we have decided to go with Pixhawk autopilot due to the big community behind it, because it is open source, and because we would like to learn enough to give some knowledge back to the community. We have had to redesign the vehicle concept several times, due to unwanted vibrations that were resonating along the structure. You can se above, the evolution and different design proposals. We have decided to add an additional carbon fibre tube to increase rigidity during the multicopter mode flight tests.

Software wise, one of the principal efforts has been put into developing a good model of our platform, in order to test the control schemes as much as we can before performing the risky, time consuming (and deeply satisfying when they are successful) tests. Since our main idea is to be able to fly with different cargo weights, we have chosen to implement a model following neuro-adaptive non linear control, this way we are aiming to minimize the time we spend reconfiguring and retuning anytime we change something in the drone.

Here you can see an attitude test from the last month. We were thinking about what video to post from this last month, we chose this one because it was the first time we were testing our nonlinear controller. We were expecting it to turn wild, the obtained performance wasn't expected given that we hadn't tuned the controller at all. To give you a rough idea the controller thought the vehicle weighted 3kg more than it really did. The vehicle was capable of maintaining the attitude despite the lateral wind, the torque the straps produced and the severely damaged yaw mechanism we had at that time. We are now actively working in obtaining a good measurement of the ground speed so we can implement a speed loop control scheme. The next step will be testing the platform as a fixed wing and finally process to the cumbersome yet exciting transition tests!

We would love to have any feedback you can give to us about how we can improve our vehicle, development process or business. We are happy to learn everyday from the huge diydrones community and to be here doing what we like the most.

Please take our SURVEY so we can make something you like!

Thank you and see you soon.

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We need you! Comments on delivery drone project

Hi all

It has been a while since we firstly presented the benefits of drone deliveries. Since then, we have been busy, really busy working on our prototype.

We got important comments from the community that motivated us to keep working on it. And finally we have something to show!


We have been working on this technology since late 2013, after much designing, redesign, proof of concepts and a lot of software development, we have reach a functional prototype which we think is the best solution for logistics problems!

It is a hybrid three propellers small UAS capable of long range and heavy payload operations. We hope you appreciate the incredible amount of hours dedicated to reach a final design and build the final pre-production prototype.

Although it may seem science fiction, we can say that deliveries thought drones are becoming real. It is known that Amazon and Google are working on it and that Matternet and Flirtey are making amazing progress (like this). They took the initiative and now DBX Drones is developing the technology that will contribute to make a parcel delivery system by air possible!

This development is intended for parcel deliveries and related companies, but we also want to open it to the consumers market (especially to the open source community) because it is fully modular (you could easily configure your vehicle) and it has a remarkable performance in terms of endurance and payload. See the definition of the product here and all its options!

Who knows which use you may find for it! Would we see peer-to-peer parcel sending in the future? We put the design and control software effort and you put your imagination!

The consumer option would be fully compatible with the Dronecode foundation initiative. See the survey to get more details. 

We are already working on the final production design and need you help to know how interesting is for you, not only as possible owner, but as a citizen that may enjoy the service of drone deliveries!

We have an enormous amount of work still to do, so that we offer the best possible product and find enough funding to launch the production. Anyway, we will show soon some more progress.


We know this is the developer community and your feedback is very valuable. That is why we would appreciate your comments in our progress! Please take our survey!


What do you think? Do you think this technology could make a parcel delivery by drone really possible? Would you take advantage of the great performance of this hybrid vehicle?

We would love to know from you and start a conversation where all of you can participate and contribute to this open source development.


Thank you!


PD: Visit us in dbxdrones.com

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Warehouses logistics and something else


Tricopters, quadcopters, hexacopters, octocopters, etc.

The drone-world is evolving quite fast and nowadays one can see very curious vehicles and configurations that surprisingly (or not) are able to fly properly.

This is due to the possibility that some open source autopilots like Pixhawk or APM offers to develop customized control algorithms for unimaginable vehicle configurations. The majority of control laws are based on PID controllers that allow to even overactuated systems, as octocopters, to be controlled “easily” as the physics of vehicle is “simple” but...

What if the autopilot has to deal with highly overactuated systems whose actuators have very different dynamics and effects?

Our aim as DroneBoX team is learning, researching and developing innovative ideas of unmanned system for logistics purposes. Our first prototype, XXCopter, aims to be a technology demonstrator for warehouses logistics capable of picking up loads from vertical storages and transporting it to a specified location inside the same warehouse.

In terms of technology, it is a 9dof of control tricopter controlled by the throttle level of each motor and the movement of two joints in each arm, using advance control techniques like Non-linear Dynamic Inversion or Control Allocation and open source autopilot like Pixhawk.

Note that this system is a real control challenge not only because the dynamics of the control parameters are really different but also because the inertia and mass properties change when a control order is applied. In addition, one must consider the gyroscopic effects, non-linearity, etc.

We let you with some of the tests carried out so far with the arms:

Do you want to see more details, the assembling process, code, some test and the results?

Stay tuned!


We will release soon some news about our second prototype, which aims to be a true game changing vehicle for last mile logistics and more.


DroneBoX team

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DroneBoX Team presentation

Hi all


Do you know how many parcels were delivered last year to persons like you or me? UPS delivered last year 4.6 billion parcels worldwide, imagine the rest of companies.

Do you think the current transport model (packages and documents) is efficient and can provide services anywhere or in any circumstance?

Imagine this: What if there is a technology that make possible to carry packages through the air, in less than 1 or 2 hours and at a fraction of the current cost? Imagine a parcel transport with an unprecedented flexibility and adaptability, with minimum energetic cost and environmental impact.

Based on the data, the technology that we develop is applicable to most of the deliveries, up to  95% of them. Imagining the case in which only the 65% of the deliveries were so urgent to need to use our technology in 2014, if being applied, UPS would have saved 105 billion USD last year in deliveries. Likewise, there are some services that currently are not possible like remote zones deliveries or urgent services under 2 hours (e.g. for medicines).

Our team develop technology of unmanned vehicles for logistics purposes, focusing on those steps where we can add more value on the chain, which allow us to develop the technology that better adapts to logistics problems, making it really applicable and safe to use. Currently we are building our second prototype which will demonstrate its inherent better capabilities in comparison with Matternet or Amazon technology.

We have gone through a long journey since our beginnings in 2013 designing, developing software, testing, etc.  There will be soon news about what we have already done and we are doing.

In the meantime, if you like this: we need people passionate about this like you to spread our view and inspire the change.


DroneBoX Team

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