Roberto Navoni's Posts (180)

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Dear Friends,
1 months ago our cubesat satellite "FEES" release in space by Soyouz 2 . The hardware is based of VRBrain 5 architecture , we put in space a STM32F4 micro controller . The first release don't use Ardupilot , hope the next one with your help and our experience could be . After a lot of test and study about the communication in space we found that lora protocol it's a great option for sat to ground and could be ground to space communication . So actually FEES is still in space and continue to trasmit it's position to earth. Now for recived it we are using global opensource network called TinyGS . Now we start we next step that's is try to constantly comunicate with the sat all around the world . So now we need the help of our great community . We need put small ground station around the world for connect our cubesat at any time of day and night. Fees is only first sat that we have in space but my opinion is that in the future we can add more cubesat and interconnect it and interact. I need other drone enthusiast around the world with ham license for implement ground station and cover ther world. The project is already available in alfa version . I developed a global dashboard where all gs will be available like tinygs , but with our implementation we can also trasmit message to satellite . We try as 12 years ago to implement a version of ardupilot for sat , where Ground station , protocol , and firmware for special future will be developed in the next months . If other guys around the world would help me and other member of this new group in ardupilot are welcome . The ground station is only the starting point , FEES is only the first sat available . Hope that next one will be from our community with Ardupilot code in space !!! ūüėČ Follow same picture of position of FEES in the space in last month. And a picture of dahboard during first global trasmission with sophyai.space gs . If you need more info or would join our new cool project contact me .. on Ardupilot discord there is a new channel called #satellite
This is the link in Ardupilot discord channel https://discord.gg/SJAxYMHYQp
If you need more info don't exitate to contact me 
 
Last Month trasmission from fees around the world : 
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Dear Friends,

I'm happy to share wit you last updates about our cubesat project. The great news is that we adopted ChibiOS operating system and start to develop a flight attitude estimation and control for Cubesat based on ardupilot projects. The other challenge are about the telemetry control system and payload managment.

If some guys in the network are working already on cubesat project or would like to join us in these great project are welcome :) 

The main iusse respect of drone development is that is not so simple simulate the flight of cubesat on the earth so we are working also on HIL system for try to simulate what happen in the space . The idea is to add to VR Brain Space  the hardware and software compatible with ardupilot project for control a Cubesat in the space . 

Hope that you like our projects and join in these great new challenge.

More detail about the project are here : http://www.lasernavigation.it/the-cubesat-fees-flexible-experimental-embedded-satelliteproject-update/

best

Roberto 

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Preview of Archon Sentinel the autonomous system for inspection of industrial plants developed by Archon.ai.

The system is equipped with a dronestation capable of supporting different types of terrestrial and flying robots.

It's based on edge computing technologies that guarantee continuity of service even in the absence of broadband Internet connection. A remote operator is able to control robots in real time, schedule and schedule inspection missions. The drone station is equipped with GPU power to support third-party apps and I.A. Technologies based on neural networks. We are looking for industrial partners to develop the project if you are interested contact Info@archon.ai 

The drone tecnology is developed around a custom vr brain hardware : arducopter and ardurover firmware. On board we use a companion computer for AI managment functionality based on Neural Network tecnology ...

The control of the drone (rover , copter , quadplane ) could be in blos mode , remotly by a web app .

We are start in europe some test with Enac blos flight. 

This is an example of neural network tecnology used for indoor localization ... a drone station use this tecnology for robot auto docking .

Wer are seraching technology and industrial partner for implement this kind of  tecnology in different market around the world. 

If you need more info contact me at rn@archon.ai

Hope that you like our last development done by virtualrobotix and archon team.

Thanks to Ardupilot team for great work done in last years around our great software :) 

Roberto Navoni

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VR Rover :

APM Rover on VR Brain 5.2 + Companion Computer + ROS and Slam mapping the navigation in outdoor done without GPS but the feedback is aligned with Geo Map because we use the GPS offset and Mag offset as starting point ...
Today was our first test without gps and it work fine ... The rover need some hardware patch and fine tuning setup but the algorithm work fine :)

On Ground station you can work as with the GPS all functionality are available , in the next months will be release the anti collision module already integrated in enviroment available for pro user in all Ardupilot enviroment and firmware.

This is a core technology that we share on all Ardupilot firmware : Arducopter ,Trad Hely , Arduplane ,Ardurover and Boat. 

Some people told me to switch to PX4 but for use better ROS integration although VR Brain hardware already support PX4 but i prefer to improve the integration of ardupilot firmware our team have a great skill and the Dev Team of Ardupilot are my old friend start to work togheter 8 years ago :) and we have a lot of advanced functionality already available for indoor localitation that we use with our customer and not only inside the university lab.

So is possible use Ardupilot for professional application. Thousand of users around the world use it .

So actually we are working to Pro version of Ardupilot fully integrated in ROS and available as modular firmware and hardware object , in the next week we discover a lot of great project develop on Ardupilot Pro pro on VR Goliath platform.

Thanks to whole Ardupilot.org DevTeam for all work done until now on ArduRover 

P.S.

the video is intalian . but is at 360 degree . It's a standard working day in our lab ... ;)

Best

Roberto Navoni

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Interesting OpenSource project that use only a simple RaspberryPI 0 as DVB-S transmitter + RTL-SDR dongle  as receiver. 
This is less expensive DVB-S trasmitter ever developed. 
All the project is by Evariste he is a great developer and member of HAM Radio community ... now we are working togheter to a revision of system with low latency that fit the requirment of drone community .... now the latency is 2.5 second could became 200 ms with a power ampli for real use in outdoor scenario. If some one would join to beta testing of the system are welcome :)
This is the github where you can found the source code of the project .https://github.com/F5OEO/rpidatv

The receiver is an RTL-SDR standard dongle available on store like amazon or ebay for price less 30 $ . The decode is done using SDR technology the software from decoding is from Pabr the name is leandvb . This is the link .

http://www.pabr.org/radio/leandvb/leandvb.en.html

This software decode DVB-S directly from rtl-sdr stream. It's impressive :) 

original blog post here : 

http://www.virtualrobotix.com/profiles/blogs/raspberry-pi-0-as-dvb-s-encoder-and-trasmitter-no-additional-hard

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A good news for company that would use Ardupilot Flight Control for professional application . Laser Navigation  ( know as Virtualrobotix )   produce VR Brain Flight Control boards this year at 6th board revision for different kind of application succesfully end the Stage 2 of aerospace quality certification AS9100 . The quality certification is for develop drone , hardware and software for aerospatial market. 

VR Brain support Ardupilot firmware and our lab support the development of custom hardware and firmware for Quadcopter , Plane , Tradhely and Rover and would support Ardupilot.org .

In september start the production of board with this kind of quality process. This is the first step for start to work to Eurocae / FAA certified products and firmware. Are there other company with same level of quality in its production or development process ? Could be nice join force for improve quality of our products around the world.

For more info about pro application , company profile and case history contact me at r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com

or check my blog post here: http://diydrones.com/profile/RoberoNavoni ;about our last development.

The standard boards and accessories available here : http://www.virtualrobotix.it/index.php/it-IT/shop-virtualrobotix

Our Facebook group with last info from our lab is here  : https://www.facebook.com/groups/vrbrain the language of group is italian but is simple to translate in english or ask directly in Eng and we reply to you :) 

Best

Roberto Navoni

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The future is here after over two years of work can be said to have developed in the laboratories of Laser Navigation and thanks to the support of the network of laboratories Virtualrobotix drone technology of tomorrow.
A short video of a recent test test of our system of autonomous flight, mapping and advanced management of the payload.
In the video you can see to your left the management of telemetry and live images from the drone, during production of photogrammetry high definition of this shed, on the right instead you can see the anti collision system , mapping and location on board the drone, working in 3D mode, totally alternative to the GPS with an accuracy of 5 cm. Integrated into our VR Brain Core  flight control.
The system is able through modules VR SLAM and Payload managment to fully manage a mapping mission indoors and inspection giving results very impressive.
The localization module that we have implemented is fully compatible with automated features that normally are handled with GPS. So in fact allows both the flight assisted by Lidar that autonomous navigation with impressive precision than a standard GPS.
This new architecture named VR  Goliath it  is compatible with different types of frames is that copter trad hely, but also boat or plane depending on the component and makes' the supply to professional customers and advanced R & D. Soon we are planning at the Technical University of Padua, a faculty Aerospace Professional Seminar dedicated to students, researchers and High Tech companies  where they will present the results of these research activities and will experience first hand the latest innovations born out by our lab ... . different professional customers have begun to use these technologies and our feedback from the field in real situations have confirmed the quality tested in our laboratories. To access more information on the platform you can contact me at r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com .

original post : http://www.virtualrobotix.com/profiles/blogs/vr-goliath-framework-integration-of-apm-ros-slam-and-payload-mana

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These are the first two ready to flight prototype picture of VR Brain Core .

Are available for OEM and Beta tester different configuration of board with STM32F4 or F7 and with some additional connector like USB / SD Card or without connector that normally are available on custom distribution board.

Actually we are working at the first custrom distribution board for our VR Wasp , the ultra light complete drone compliant to under 300 gr drone for urban enviroment .

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This is a picture with comparison between VR Brain 5 , VR Brain Core 6 and VR uBrain 5 as you can see the design of the core is adapt for fast protyping and for simple integration inside custom design.

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For check the new VR Core 6 on air we decide to use this simple frame in 5 minutes we replace the VR uBrain and test the new board . 

In the video you can see the result of first flight ... It's impressive :) 

All the APM firmwware normally available for VR Brain 5 : Copter, Standard Hely , Plane , Rover , Boat it's available for VR Core. 

Here will be more information about the new OEM board : 

https://vrbrain.wordpress.com/

For VR Core there is a porting of Cleanflight by TommyLeo 

https://vrbrain.wordpress.com/quick-start-guide/speedyflight-2-31-multiwii-32-by-tommyleo/

We are discussing with Alessio Morale one of the founder of Libre Pilot project for support it inside his project.

I hope that you like this new design. It's not a replace of vrbrain and vrubrain but it's for OEM and special custom design where the integration is the must .

The board is only 5 grams 

for more info contact me at : r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com 

Best

Roberto Navoni

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This is the first preview of Next Gen STm32F7 flight control by Virtualrobotix.  New core , much power and a reliable solution based on industrial micro controller. 

A new oem and hobbyst platform with full support for :

  • Copter¬†
  • Helicopter¬†
  • Plane
  • Rover
  • Boat

This new form factor is simple fast prototyping platform for your own custom design but a reliable design for your final solution. The standard version of VR Brain core 6 support classic STM32F4 micro controller.

Will be available in mass production Q1/16 prototypes for our OEM customers will be available in December 2015

If you are not already our OEM partner and are interested to the product  contact me at r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com 

Suggestions are welcome.

Best

Roberto 

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Goodmorning everyone,
I am happy to present the first Drone helicopter completely Made in Italy :)

  • Frame Protos 500 ¬†Helicopter by MSheli (made in italy)¬†
  • Flight Control: VR uBrain 5 by Virtualrobotix (made in italy)¬†
  • GPS: GPS VR 8¬†by Virtualrobotix (made in italy)¬†
  • System integration by Ferruccio Vicari :)

last month I had the honor and pleasure to personally meet one of Italian  developers of  APM Helicopter. I was intrigued by the fact that among the many cards VR ubrain sold to run multicopters there was Ferruccio, this is the name of our Aeronautical Eng. Ferruccio are 'working on it and  try to improve  APM Helicopter on  VR Brain / uBrain and  on Pixhawk . He is asking us to support helicopter  firmware and our hardware to be able to get their hands on it and make better flight performances.

Ever since I met and fell in love of his helicopters in fact the Virtualrobotix Lab, whenever possible, is trying to give support to his work trying to better understand how to help Ferruccio to solve the current limits of both the firmware and  hardware. Putting all this work then available to APM Community.

In particular the two innovative features present in the firmware version of Ferruccio are a curve of the management of the gas , 3 points that allows to associate to the management of the collective of the helicopter the power required to fly. And compensation of roll according to the pitch of the tail, both changes that actually make a helicopter extremely simple to flight like a multicopter

Ferruccio is in contact with Robert and the rest of APM Copter dev team for share the result of its work. The Dev Team done an amazing work on this version of firmware. Pilot a Helicopter or Multicopter now is the same no difference. 

In this video you can see the video of one of the many missions that the totally autonomous VR Hely is able to do without any kind of interference from the pilot it during take-off or during  landing.
here's the video:

This is picture of micro brain installed on Protos 500

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This and 'the graph of vibration present on VR uBrain about the frame of Protos 500 and also of the solutions adopted to cut the vibrations on the flight control

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Another feature is the non-trivial reduces vibration and also here Ferruccio did an excellent job inventing support can cut the most 'can make vibration and actually like a normal quadricopter.
So simple that I asked Ferruccio could feel myself with an old T-rex 470 to understand how different it was to fly a helicopter over a classic qudricopter pilot who now I'm  for years.
The result was sensational in the second flight I was completely able to control my trex 450.
Surely these means are complex and dangerous, you have to have skills to do a suitable setup and then you have to use them with care but as a result of flight times with petrol engines and payload transported there not comparison with any other type of aircraft, iVTOL,  plane and  quadricopter.
The video of my first flight with the VR uBrain 4.5 on my Trex 450

And that 'my second flight, never flown before helicopters ... I would say amazing :)

Here you can find many interesting videos on its marvelous Ferruccio helicopters.

https://www.youtube.com/user/FlybrosColico/videos

for more information to join the project mail me here : r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com

The VR uBrain 5 and its accessories is available here :

http://www.virtualrobotix.it/index.php/it-IT/shop-virtualrobotix/autopilota/vrbrainmicro51-detail

Best

Roberto Navoni

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This is the first Flight of VR Brain 5 LX

These are the picture of first drone controlled by VR Brain 5 LX 

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After great job did by APM dev team to porting APM firmware on Linux Os our team decide to start to investigate about our design derived by standard VR Brain and ported to Linux .

At the begin we develop a board called Neuron II only as companion computer connected to uBrain as main flight controller and the linux cpu for advanced functionality as low latency video streaming. 

After some test we decide to try to merge all our experience on Neuron II and VR Brain on a single design and put inertial sensor like IMU MPU6000 and barometer on VR Neuron II  and trasform it in VR Brain 5 LX:) 

In our design we evaluate different cpu at the end decide to support RPI 2 cpu and implement on it our hardware design. 

Study and understand the new architecture and at the end we done the first real flight by first VR Brain 5 LX.  Thanks to Luca , Erik and Matteo for firmware and software development and porting and Diego for hardware design. 

In our design we mantain the compatibility with standard VR Accessories like GPS and telemetry and start to evaluate how merge the work done on Neuron II like payload managment , Professional object advoidance ecc to VR Brain LX.

These are the specification of new board : 

VR Brain 5 LX 

  • CPU Quadcore 1 GHZ ARM v7 1 Gbyte of RAM ( RPI 2 )¬†
  • IMU Sensor MPU9250¬†
  • Barometer :¬†MEAS MS5611¬†
  • 1 Buzzer Output.
  • 1 Led Output .
  • 2 Brushless motor Output ( Option)¬†
  • 1 aditional Imu for external Brushless Gimbal MPU6000. ( Option)¬†
  • 1 PPMSUM Input
  • 8 PWM Output¬†
  • 1 Sbus Input (Optional)¬†
  • 1 Input for external Magnetometer : VR GPS 8 HMC5983 Temp Compensated.
  • 1 serial input for external GPS : VR GPS 8 ( Ublox M8N / T as Option)¬†
  • 1 Vr uBrain as aditional flight control (Option) .
  • 1 i2c bus for additional option like : terara ranger , lidar light , air speed sensor , rgb led.
  • 1 SPI bus for additional IMU / GPS.
  • 4 Analog input .
    • Lipo voltage 6S.
    • Current sensor.
    • Spare channel 1¬†
    • Spare channel 2¬†
  • On board 5 volt Bec 6S.

Thanks to VR Lab Team , Diydrones Dev Team , Navio and Erlerobotics team for work done until now on APM code and linux porting . Great Job guys :) I hope in the next months that our team star to contribute on Linux version of APM code ,too

for more ino : r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com 

Best

Roberto Navoni

original blog post : http://www.virtualrobotix.com/profiles/blogs/vr-brain-5-lx-the-first-flight-of-virtualrobotix-linux-flight-con

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Mechanical Enclosure.

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New Thermal Inspector PCB REV 1 RC2

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 The dimension is like a GOPRO so the Standard GoPro Gimbal are compatible with Thermal Inspector.

This is the first power on and testing of last revision of our device

After some months of development we are near to release the first version of VR Thermal Inspector.

These are the specifications :    

  • Sensor : Flir Lepton 3 160 x 120 ( PRO) ¬†
  • ¬†Integrated IMU : MPU6000
  • ¬†Integrated Barometer : (Option)
  • ¬†1000 mah Battery until 4 hours in power on mode.
  • Form Factor like a ¬†GoPro
  • ¬†Wheight ¬†40 grams¬†
  • ¬†CPU ¬†STM32F4 407
  • Nuttx Operating Systems.¬†
  • SD Card SDIO : High Speed
  • ¬†Integrated Wifi or BT Module (option)¬†
  • ¬†3 Multi Function Button : Power On / mode / picture /video

Digital Input / Output :

  • 1 Buzzer ¬†
  • Digital Output ON / OFF
  • ¬†3 PWM Output PWM 1 Digital PWM input
  • ¬†1 Analog Input
  • ¬†1 Serial Port TTL
  • ¬†1 Serial Port connected to Wifi or BT module
  • ¬†RGB LED
  • ¬†USB Port

Functionality : 

  • Live Video Recording.
  • Take a picture every X second ( 5 ¬†- 10 - 15 )
  • Take a picture after an event.
  • Preview streaming by usb wifi /bt/ serial port.
  • Palette Settings
  • Radiometric functionality each pixel information have a specific absolute temperature.¬†
  • Available API via USB / Seriale / wifi
  • On board Blob detection and tracking ¬†by PWM Roll / Pitch/ Yaw
  • Beeper activation at specific event.
  • on/off activation at specific event.
  • Companion Computer Add on for advanced functionality like PAL output or advanced robotics functionality by Mavlink or ROS interface to robotics systems : VR Brain / Pixhawk FC ¬†
  • On Board advanced events triggered by specific temperature detection.
  • Application available for ¬†Smarphone: ¬†Andoroid / IOS e or Windows Personal computer.

 Preview of Android Application 

PC Application Preview in early prototype version based on VR uBrain 5.1

This is an example of visual ispection of a building did by a drones. 

We intend start  a Kickstarter in September , we would like to raise some pre order because we want produce a mold for plastic enclosure  and for obtain a good price from Flir for lepton modules . Before to start we like to understand what do you think about this product . Suggestions are welcome. The target price will be 450 - 600 euro we are working on the bom price  for finalize the selling cost  .

If you are interest to more detail or help us to going in production with this new cool product don't exitate to contact me at r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com

Best

Roberto Navoni 

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I am happy to introduce VR Neuron II's latest virtualrobotix platform.
The goal is to have the maximum possible integration from a Flight Control as VR Brain based on micro controller STM32, extremely reliable with many hours of flights behind with a companion computer based on RPI2 that through a dedicated IMU will work Parallel to the VR Brain and also to provide advanced features such as internet connectivity, management or payload or functionality of digital and brushless gimbal.

One of the best feature of Neuron is that a lot of your "old" sensor and device could be re usable in your new proget : GPS , Telemetry Module and IMU sensor is compatible with VR Neuron II Board.
We  planned to develop a modular architecture that allows the addition and improvement of the capabilities of the system through the logic of the update online and why not of online , app store.
The first platform for developers and partners will be made available from September will be immediately available software to connect to the internet and to manage payload in DIY and RTF configuration.
For some ideas that gave birth to the project I wanted to thank the guys from the project NavIO and also  Victor the CEO of Erle  Robotics as well the DIYDrones Teams that did a great work on Linux port of APM Platform :)

Great Job Guys :) 

Best

Roberto 

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Spark_fe

To our knowledge the first Italian "drone" for professional use in the range below 25 Kg. In obtaining the type certificate of the DGAC, the SPARK of developed by Italian VitualRobotix arrives in France after having been recently recognized in Italy to carry out aerial work. (See also: SPARK, the drone Italian ENAC recognized for non-critical actions)
Based on autopilot VR Brain PRO 5.2 is running on a customized version of Arducopter 32-bit, the SPARK today in France can carry out aerial photography, surveying and aerial work in general, in the scenarios S2 and S3 using as ground control also the VR PAD Station and the mission planner (see also: The no flight zone on the VR Station PAD)
The scenario S2 is to work up to 1000 meters away from the pilot even in EVLOS and a height of less than 50 meters but no people in the area of ‚Äč‚Äčoperations
L 'S3 is related to visual flight in urban scenarios and / or in close proximity to people and animals but with a maximum distance from the pilot di100m

virtualrobotix francia

Congratulations to VirtualRobotix facing in a market which now sees 1,622 active Operators , 2849 registered drone and  1764 allowed to operate in urban areas (means of mass less than 2 kg or up to 4 kg if equipped with a parachute) with no accidents from 2012, date on which the Regulation entered into force on French Drone Market.

Original Post Link at : http://www.quadricottero.com/2015/06/virtualrobotix-sbarca-in-francia-lo.html

more information about VR Spark and VR Brain 5.2 PRO autopilot available here : 

http://www.virtualrobotix.it/index.php/en/

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Dear Friends and Developer,

in this video is possible to see the result of integration of VR Spark on board companion computer to video Payload.

Actually we implemented the integration with GoPro and Sony . In this demostration is possible to see how we decide to implement the Pilot user interface. Instead to copy the approach did with 3DR Solo we prefer to implement quite different approach instead to use the Smartphone or Pad with our VR Pad Station application only , we prefered to use the compannion computer to control the status of 4 switch on Taranis Radio and configure it with more usefull functionality.

On the 4 switch we assigned control of video , photo , near , standard and wide field of view and video resolution 1080P , 2.7 K , 4K.

On the VR Spark we have a standard osd and analog switch between FPV Camera and Payload camera. 

All this kind of configuration available on standard GoPro App is possible to assign to 4 switch. 

In the next video i'll show you integration in the PAD and digital stream video with low latency :) 

For more information about Spark you can see this link : 

http://www.virtualrobotix.it/index.php/en/shop/multirotori-rtf/spark2015-detail

Best

Roberto 

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Drones and aerial work in Italy. Despite some difficulties of a regulatory and bureaucratic, dictated by the regulation on unmanned aircraft, now almost every day ENAC recognizes operators and means to do the non-critical and authorizes (in number sharply less) to mixed critical operations. 

Currently there are 232 operators SAPR. Of these, those who use drones Italian counted on the fingers of one hand. In fact, the means that are all the greater in non-critical actions are based on systems of DJI (70% of the total), suitably modified to be recognized, of which 20% are constituted by DJI Phantom.

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VIRTUALROBOTIX 350 SPARK THE DRONE ITALIAN FOR AERIAL WORK

In this scenario stands¬†recognition ENAC¬†achieved today by 'very Italian VirtualRobotix that for the first time enters the Olympus of Drones that ¬†can perform aerial work It is quadcopter¬†SPARK 350.¬†It is a true¬†Italian product¬†made ‚Äč‚Äčin almost all components from VirtualRobotix.¬†Only motors and controllers (ESC) are not made "in house".¬†Not for long, however, the reality of Bergamo is also planning the ESC.
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Even the¬†design is Italian,¬†the body is designed by Flavio Taborelli, printed in SLS, made ‚Äč‚Äčwith a mix of ABS and composite materials to have a proper balance between¬†flexibility and rigidity.
vrbrain.bmp
Inside the autopilot is called¬†VrBrain 5.2:¬†a¬†flight control 32bit¬†made ‚Äč‚Äčin VirtualRobotix whose hardware and sensors have¬†also¬†been¬†taken as an example by¬†the¬†Pixhawk3DRobotics who had initially chosen another type of accelerometers and gyroscopes getting bad results forced to run for cover immediately after choosing the same path of VRBrain.¬†And the¬†GPS?¬†He also designed by VirtualRobotix, updates the previous¬†VR GPS¬†module which now uses the¬†NEO 8
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NO INTERNAL WIRING
The Italian news are not finished, the SPARK has no wiring. Inside the frame using a particular card that serves as integrated modular distribution board and connects esc and motors. The standard version also mounts an OSD with tx and video room integrated fpv navigation and you can switch between the cam navigation and video preview of the room installed on the gimbal
FIRMWARE FLIGHT ARDUCOPTER
VirtualRobotix, in the person of Roberto Navoni, was the founder and contributor of codeArducopter now called APM: Copter. The version of firmware that runs on VRBrain is properly optimized for the hardware VRBRain but has the exact same functions of the official version. For these reasons we can say that the firmware is made in VirtualRobotix even if the project is actually open source.
TERMINATOR AND PARACHUTE 
The SPARK recognized by 'ENAC weighs 1.8 Kg and has terminator flight andparachute. It can be considered the Italian answer to DJI Phantom , a 'statement that from now on it is also valid for the professional field. 
For more information on SPARK 350: www.virtualrobotix.it 

THE SPARK 350 IN ACTION 
Original Blog post by Danilo Scarato Quadricottero News : 
http://www.quadricottero.com/2015/05/spark-il-drone-italiano-riconosciuto.html
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Moderator

In last months virtualrobotix lab work hard on a "secret alter ego project" our target was add low cost companion computer and add advanced functionality to our Flight Conrol and other mavlink compatible design .

During last fair in Milan spoke with Michele about the problem of analogic trasmission during the FPV Racing because the indoor situation create a lot of rf iusse . During our development work a lot on low latency and redundace system. So that was a good application where understand if our work was good or not for control the drone in fpv mode and with digital control channel. Our doubt was on data link and  low latency of the channel .

Actually we are not already update vr pad station with last update but we are work in progress so decide to do a test with PC connected to the drone. 

In this demo we use

a VR uBrain : http://www.virtualrobotix.it/index.php/en/shop/autopilot/vrbrainmicro51-detail

a VR GPS : http://www.virtualrobotix.it/index.php/en/shop/accessories/gps-ublox-8-detail

as companion computer i used a :

Raspberry PI 2 with a prototype of custom HDMI digital input , a standard RPI camera or usb h264 cam.

A Wifi 802.11 AC dongle , that i implemented in the standard kernel on RPI 2.

The micro brain is connected to companion computer by usb port and we developed a custom application that transport mavlink protocol and support a custom API functionality , but is possible to use mavproxy or drone kit ,too. I prefer c/c++ or java app not python.

By our api is possible to activate by ground station video and remote control on mavlink for control the drone with very low latency so is possible to control the drone in stable mode. 

During the test we are incredible surprised we don't have any artifact and don't lost the video link ... we did some test on outdoor until 400 m without big problem. :)

This is only the begin of the project for update your "old" vrbrain technology with new advanced digital functionality to your drone :)

In this video all the functionality of the drone is controlled by 5.8 ghz IP data link ... the radio is connected to pc it is like a joystick for mission planner and trasmit to the drone the stick control by mavlink ovverride command. No latency , during a windy day the control is perfect . And during the control i saw the video from the drone without latency .

Outdoor medium range test ... no latency ... 

In our api is already implemented the API for control Sony camera and GO Pro 3/4 cam with preview trasmission to ground station :)

If you need more info about our tecnology contact me at r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com we have a secret group in fb of developer that are join at early version of our development :)

best

Roberto Navoni

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Moderator

3689641316?profile=original

VR Spark 350 born after a year full of experiments, where we worked on improving electronic technologies, mechanical design, usability for end user and the possibility to be used for commercial purposes respecting regulation rules that govern the use of drones in the civil aviation world.

We implemented control systems and flight termination to ensure compliance with the Italian and French rules , now start to work on U.S to achieve high levels of safety and reliability. Current configuration with Brushless Gimbal , GoPro 4 and Parachute is 1.3 kg . It has a maximum take off weigh of 1.8 Kg. (3.4 pounds) to take advantage of the imminent FAA and European regulations that will enable smaller drones to fly in restricted areas.

We are currently undergoing experimentation to achieve Italian and French approval for commercial use, and plan to start selling in April.

We are searching partner that want support us for VR Spark Section 333 FAA certification.

for info contact me by skype my account is : virtualrobotix or at my email r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com I'll be present during ELC Technical Showcase in San Jose.

VR Spark 350 main applications are:

  • low budget filmography.
  • safety and rescue.
  • Video inspection ¬†.
  • Marketing (drones branded for promotion - delivery -)
  • Automatic features as ¬†follow me through VR platform Leash. (Action Sports)
  • Photogrammetry.
  • Training schools for professional pilots.
  • Suitable for drones startups company and research projects (eg H2020).

Example of filmografy :

Example of our Flir based Thermal image sensor :

This multi role machine aims to enter as a protagonist in the business services using drones.
It has all the features to aspire to be the Italian answer to the Chinese DJI Phantom. The semplicity and portability of a DJI Phantom, but with so many more payload options and flexibility!

This is last Technical Specification: (Updated) 

  • Innovative Italian Design and special painting technology.¬†
  • Frame configuration : Multicopter Quad .

  • Propeller: ¬†9x4.5 Option 10x4.5¬†

  • Motors: ¬†980 KV

  • Time of flight 18 min.

  • Weight : 1.3 kg in full ¬†configuration Gimbal , GoPro 4 Camera and Parachute .

  • Flight Control : VR Brain 5.2 PRO ( VR SPARK CUSTOMIZATION)

  • GPS : VR GPS 8 GNSS dual mode navigation system GPS / GLONASS. until 18 sat and HDOP < 1.5

  • Flight Termination System : VR Flight Stop PRO Power Cutoff + Parachute.¬†

3689641452?profile=original

Luca ... The Flight Stop work fine ? ... Opsss :) 

  • Radio Link:

    • Primary: SBUS FRSKY X4R

    • Secondary: Flyght Stop : PPMSUM FRSKY D4R

  • Telemetry:

    • FRSKY S.PORT (Telemetry information available on Taranis display LUA Script customizable ) .

    • VR Link 868 / 915 (Mavlink telemetry module)

    • VR OSD - option - ¬†( Video overlay main telemetry information : attitude , GPS , Battery)

  • FPV Functionality :¬†
    • CCD camera integrated in the drone .
    • 5.8 Ghz Video TX .
    • Video Switch between the FPV Camera and GoPro 4 .
  • Voltage and Hall effect Current sensor integrated on distribution board.
  • Standard Payload 2 Axis Brushless Gimbal + GoPro 4 Hero Black.

  • PAYLOAD Option Max Weight ( 500 gr)

  • Battery 3S 4000 Mah.

  • Special Drone Code 1st Meeting version support on board RaspberryPi .¬†

 

3689637879?profile=original

It is thanks to the work of a large community made up of people with great competence, passion and technological skill that this project has seen the light.

Thanks to Virtualrobotix and the APM:Copter DEV team which has done an excellent job bringing this platform to high levels that was, in its infancy, within the reach of only a few experts.

Now after extensive work on the simplification and usability, so many more professionals can enjoy the flexibility and power of this platform.

for info contact : info@virtualrobotix.com 

original blog post with update : http://www.virtualrobotix.com/profiles/blogs/vr-spark-350-will-be-presented-at-embedded-linux-conference-at-te

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Moderator

Dear Friend,

I'm happy to present the  prototype of Virtualrobotix thermal camera. 

In last months we work a lot on this new project , it's based on new Flir sensor and VR uBrain 5.1.

We implement a specific firmware on uBrain for control the flir sensor , read image , trasmit it in realtime by USB or Bluetooth to PC or Mobile application.

The actual function supported in early prototype are : 

  • Live video streaming.
  • Recording on SD card.
  • Snapshot by event (push a button or specific programmable event).
  • We storage raw data and telemetry data from sensor so is possible to have a very detailed information about the temperature of all the point available in the image .
  • Is possible to analyse the image of VR Thermal Camera in realtime or in post processing with a specific appication.¬†

Actually we are developing specific application for our UAV especially for VR Spark as an alternative payload , actually we intend to propose this solution for video inspection in energy enviroment or solar field and a lot of other UAV or not UAV application if you are interested on this kind of technology contact me at : 

r.navoni@virtualrobotix.com

original post : http://www.virtualrobotix.com/profiles/blogs/virtualrobotix-thermal-inspector-preview-2015

best

Roberto Navoni

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Moderator

The official presentation of VR Spark 350 will take place at DroneShow Ferrara 28/29 March 2015.

The latest revisions of VR Spark 350, currently undergoing certification, will be presented on a confidential basis to some selected beta testers at the 2015 FIAPR convention.

VR Spark 350 was born after a year full of experiments, where we worked on improving electronic technologies, mechanical design, usability for end user and the possibility to be used for commercial purposes respecting regulation rules that govern the use of drones in the civil aviation world.

3689637728?profile=original

We implemented control systems and flight termination to ensure compliance with the Italian and French rules and to achieve high levels of safety and reliability. It has a maximum take off weigh under 1.6 Kg. (3.4 pounds) to take advantage of the imminent FAA and European regulations that will enable smaller drones to fly in restricted areas.

We are currently undergoing experimentation to achieve Italian and French approval for commercial use, and plan to start selling in April.

VR Spark 350 main applications are:

  • low budget filmography.
  • safety and rescue.
  • Video inspection .
  • Marketing (drones branded for promotion - delivery -)
  • Automatic features as ¬†follow me through VR platform Leash. (Action Sports)
  • Photogrammetry.
  • Training schools for professional pilots.
  • Suitable for drones startups company and research projects (eg H2020).

This multi role machine aims to enter as a protagonist in the business services using drones.
It has all the features to aspire to be the Italian answer to the Chinese DJI Phantom. The semplicity and portability of a DJI Phantom, but with so many more payload options and flexibility!

Technical Specification:

  • Frame configuration : Multicopter Quad .

  • Propeller: ¬†9x4.5

  • Motors: ¬†980 KV

  • Time of flight 18 min.

  • Weight : 1.6 kg al decollo.

  • Flight Control : VR Brain 5.2 PRO ( VR SPARK CUSTOMIZATION)

  • GPS : VR GPS 8 GNSS dual mode navigation system GPS / GLONASS.

  • Flight Termination System : VR Flight Stop PRO Power Cutoff + Parachute. (option)

 

  • Radio Link:

    • Primario: SBUS FRSKY X4R

    • Secondario: Terminatore di volo : PPMSUM FRSKY D4R

 

  • Telemetry:

    • FRSKY S.PORT.

    • VR Link 868 / 915 (Mavlink telemetry module)

    • VR OSD ( Video overlay main telemetry information : attitude , GPS , Battery)

 

  • Standard Payload 2 Axis Brushless Gimbal + GoPro 4 Hero Black.

  • PAYLOAD Option Max Weight ( 500 gr)

  • Battery 3S 4000 Mah.

 

3689637879?profile=original

It is thanks to the work of a large community made up of people with great competence, passion and technological skill that this project has seen the light.

Thanks to Virtualrobotix and the APM:Copter DEV team which has done an excellent job bringing this platform to high levels that was, in its infancy, within the reach of only a few experts.

Now after extensive work on the simplification and usability, so many more professionals can enjoy the flexibility and power of this platform.

for info contact : info@virtualrobotix.com 

original blog post : http://www.virtualrobotix.com/profiles/blogs/we-decide-the-date-of-the-official-presentation-of-the-vr-spark-3

Read more…