Chris Anderson's Blog – August 2016 Archive (16)

PrecisionHawk gets first FAA waiver to fly beyond visual line of sight using LATAS system

From PrecisionHawk's post on its milestone FAA approval to fly beyond visual line of sight, in which they describe their interesting LATAS system:

To further mitigate risk, PrecisionHawk uses an airspace display…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 30, 2016 at 9:07am — 14 Comments

PX4 flying fully autonomous delta quad VTOL

The PX4 Pro flight control stack offers fully autonomous control of VTOL airframes including delta quads and planes, tail sitters and tilt rotors. Special thanks go to Droneslab for the airframe and UAVenture for the ongoing software development collaboration.

Added by Chris Anderson on August 27, 2016 at 11:35am — 7 Comments

PX4 running on Parrot Bebop

Support for the Parrot Bebop has been added by the ETH team so it can be used more in research and testing. More details here

Added by Chris Anderson on August 24, 2016 at 10:25pm — 6 Comments

DIY Drones at 80,000 members! Reflections on the evolution of DIY robotics and the next big things

It's customary and traditional that we celebrate the addition of every 1,000 new members here and share the traffic stats. This time it's a 80,000! 

There has been a huge amount of change in the drone market since this started as a hobby scratchpad for me back in 2007. We helped created a whole new industry, but it also moved from DIY to plug-and-play at light…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 24, 2016 at 7:30am — 7 Comments

We've come a long way: US Department of Interior selects 3DR Solos, which got their start right here

Nine years and 80,000 members ago, we started with this

That first Lego Mindstorms autopilot was feeble, sure, but it was also possible. Inspired by the availability of cheap…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 23, 2016 at 9:55pm — 19 Comments

Tickets now on sale for Sparkfun's Autonomous Vehicle Competition

Even if you don't plan to bring an autonomous rover to Sparkfun's AVC in Boulder, Colorado on Sept 17, you can still register as a spectator to see the racing. Tickets are now on sale …


Added by Chris Anderson on August 17, 2016 at 10:34am — No Comments

Intel announces new Aero drone development board based on Dronecode PX4 software

Today at the Intel Developer Forum, CEO Brian Krzanichannounced both the company's Aero drone development board and a full ready-to-fly drone based on Aer on the company's RealSense sense-and-avoid solution, which is already used on the Yuneec Typhoon H…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 16, 2016 at 8:00pm — 37 Comments

u-blox & PX4 RTK integration on M8P GPS module

This video shows work in progress done jointly by u-blox (an ETH spinoff) and PX4 (an ETH open source autopilot) to leverage the latest u-blox RTK hardware on the PX4 flight stack. No additional hardware is required, the RTCM correction data is forwarded straight from the ground control station via MAVLink (over Wifi)

Added by Chris Anderson on August 15, 2016 at 12:26pm — 2 Comments

Inexpensive laser time-of-flight sensor with 2m range

Small, cheap ($13) laser ranger finder with 2m range and less noise than sonar. Sign me up!

The VL53L0X from ST Microelectronics is a time-of-flight ranging system integrated into a compact module. This board is a carrier for the VL53L0X, so we recommend careful reading…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 9, 2016 at 3:11pm — 43 Comments

Pixhawk-powered quadplane doing drug delivery in Madagascar

Nice looking bird! Pixhawk/APM powered, at least last time I checked. From Newatlas (fromerly Gizmag)

Many of the remote villages in the Ifanadiana district of Madagascar aren't linked to the outside world by decent roads. Among other things, this means that it can be very…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 8, 2016 at 3:00pm — 3 Comments

Last week to register for Sparkfun Autonomous Vehicle Competition

A reminder from Sparkfun:

We are one week away from closing registration for all autonomous competitions in this year’s AVC, which includes both the Classic AVC race and …


Added by Chris Anderson on August 8, 2016 at 2:30pm — No Comments

Great article on the use of drones to combat poaching

Long but worth it, Backchannel has a comprehensive update on drones used to combat poaching on land and sea. One interesting data point:

One pilot project in a protected area in Kenya saw a …


Added by Chris Anderson on August 8, 2016 at 7:52am — 7 Comments

NavStick FlytPod now on Indiegogo

I've been using this one in beta for a few months and I'm really impressed. Now it's available to everyone on Indiegogo. FlytPod  combines PX4 and ROS in a very easy-to-use SDK, with an onboard HTML-based ground station and a powerful Odroid-based…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 4, 2016 at 7:44pm — 24 Comments

LIDAR on a chip

From IEEE Spectrum:

Lidar systems measure how far away each pixel in a 3D space is from the emitting device, as well as the direction to that pixel, which allows for the creation of a full 3D model of the world around…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 4, 2016 at 7:30pm — 4 Comments

QGroundControl 3.0 released

From the APM discussion group:

We are happy to announce the release of QGroundControl 3.0. QGroundControl provides full flight control, mission planning and configuration for ArduPilot or PX4 Pro powered vehicles. It is available for Windows, Linux, OS X, as well as Android devices (tablet and phone). Also with the release of QGC 3.0 comes beta availability of…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 1, 2016 at 2:30pm — 1 Comment

From NBC's Today show: Microsoft using 3DR Solos to fight Zika in Texas

Cool report this morning from NBC's Today Show: Microsoft's Project Premonition is using 3DR Solos to find mosquito…


Added by Chris Anderson on August 1, 2016 at 12:22pm — 1 Comment

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