Noth666's Posts (3)

A PX4 AR Drone is born 2nd post

Welcome back to my build log/experiences with this project. 

After playing around with and figuring out where to put the various bits I went on to add the XBee headers, powercable and 3 pin RX header to the PX4IOAR: 


At this point I will skip further as the assembly is well detailed in pictures on the PX4 website. I would add that getting the spacers in between the PX4FMU and IOAR is not entirely simple without 3 or more hands, but just fiddle in the white spacer first, then push down the screw through the FMU, one by one is probably one of the easier ways to do it. 

Here is what you end up with after assembly: (zippo again for size - the quad is tiny!)


Ok, now we need to get this all fitted into the EPP foam body donor of the AR Drone, including the GPS and the FLOW. 

Bottom view (I know the battery is a bit incorrect, I took only one pic of this)


In the above picture you can see both the cutout for the battery as well as that for the flow unit. I am not 100% sure yet that the sonar will not have issues, but I hope not. Would not want to mount it any lower as the lens will poke out then and strike ground if it comes down hard. 

Topside GPS mount closeup, as you can see I cut out a flat plateau first, and then carved a smaller space in the middle for the cable and the chip etc on the bottom of the module:


It's ALIVE!!! Look at the pretty lights! 


Next up at this point is to test everything together, get the startup script correctly set up etc, plus installing the FrSky receiver when my FrSky DR 4-II arrives. 

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A PX4 AR Drone is born

3689509073?profile=originalSharing some pics etc from my PX4FMU/AR Drone build. 

I got the AR Drone carrier to be able to fly the PX4FMU inside to test small things whenever, plus the AR Drone airframe is very well suited to packed urban environments like where I live. 

I do also plan on using the PX4FMU for other airframes, but it seemed sensible to get all the software bits working the way I want them to before I attempt to put the FC on an airframe I am unfamiliar with that may introduce it's own issues. 

The components of the build: 

AR Drone 1.0 (all control electronics and cameras removed)




uBlox LEA-6 3DR GPS 

Digi XBee Pro (will be testing different radios)

FrSky DR 4-II PPM (not in pictures, yet to arrive)

The goodies arrived in a small box: (zippo for size)


Here is the patient awaiting transplant next to the battery I will use: 


Whats in the box?! 


Just to detail some of what I did not expect: 5 -> 6 position DF13 cable included with PX4FLOW, also correct GPS cable included with PX4FMU. 

Also included stickers with PX4 logo, plus branded micro SD card and reader: 


At this stage I tested the gear I could, so after toolchain installation, setup, etc I got the latest firmware sources, built it and flashed onto PX4FMU, and then tested the PX4FLOW through QGroundControl. 

Now lets get to work, first we need space for the battery: 


Then figure out where and how to place the components + some more carving done: 


This is continued in next post as I cannot add more pics to this one :-) Co Be Continued...

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I have just recently gotten one of these from

And I was basically planning on using it as the hardware platform for my own integrated UAV controller.The specs TechFX Motion OSD IMU:* small 2"x2.5" size* fast dsPIC 40 MIPS 80 Mhz MCU* 3 axis accelerometer MMA7260Q with G selectable* 3 axis Gyroscope of IDG300's* MAX 7456 On screen display video overlay NTSC and PAL formats which overlays the data sent to it from the dsPIC over the Video input* (2) RCA jacks for Video in and Video out supporting NTSC and PAL formats* GPS port for 32 channel Sannav FV-M8 (Etek EB-85A) GPS module MAX 2 HZ update rate* DGPS port for optional RTCM DGPS updates* Xbee connectors (XSC gives maximum range of 15 miles!)* 256K I2C serial eeprom for storing settings, waypoints and GPS logger data* USB fullspeed 2.0 communications via FTDI chip* SPI, I2C and UART ports for using optional modules* (8) 3.3 volt IO configurable* (8) 5 volt Output configurable as PWM (servo) or TTL* 10 bit a2d* ICSP port for ICD2 or Pickit2 programmers* 5 volt 800 mA LDO voltage regulator* 3.3 volt 800 mA LDO voltage regulator* Full power and ground planes with quality 6 layer board design minimizes noise* Power ports including 3.3, 5 volt, and ground connections* Optional 0.100 “ headers* Voltage input of 6-9 volts DCI have been thinking of a setup like this:TechFX OSD/IMU with custom programming for Kalman, as well as waypoint and return home navigation, using an XBee 868 modem for control and telemetry plus a video TX for live feed with the OSD overlay.The TechFX has 8 PWM out, and I2C, and I have a I2C 8 servo controller board so there should be enough channels for flight, camera pan tilt and zoom, plus a few other tricks.On the ground I was planning on using a laptop with a custom app in C# to communicate with the UAV, and to be able to also control it manually when needed using normal USB flight sim controllers. The laptop would be showing the video stream, or moving map, or attitude/flight data or a mix of them all.I would use software to select autonomous, manual or a mixed mode on the TechFX but would most likely include a RC rx with a hardware mux as a backup in case of software failure.The airframe will be my ~40" trainer (see my bad pic) with a hefty noname brushless motor, 70amp ESC, and 22.2V Li-Po batteries (big) plus a 7A BEC for 5V and a 3A 9V DC-DC.Will have at least one belly mounted camera with pan and tilt to begin with and then add zoom and another down facing camera later probably.This will take quite some time as it is being built on a very small budget and will move slowly, plus there is a ton of programming to do which may also move slowly since I already do it for 8 hours a day at work.Any comments welcome :-)Ps in case anyone wonders, No I am not affiliated in any way to the silicon horizon.
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