I've got a soft spot in my heart for blimps, which I think are the ideal aerial robotics learning platform for kids. Our original Blimpduino was long ago retired, but we're working on a new version that will use optical flow and advanced image processing for autonomous navigation (look for this in early 2013). 

In the meantime, here's an interesting project for an Arduino-controlled RC blimp with many 3D-printable parts. Still in development, but the prototype scoots!

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Comment by David Kirk on November 4, 2012 at 2:09am

Be nice to see Blimpduino resurrected. It was what got me into Arduino's. I bought a flying nemo fish last year; saw blimpduino and got hacking. Not autonomous just custom transmitter/receiver flight controls. Still on the bench as I need to make up a proper PCB as large chunks of veroboard just too heavy.

Here is a video of the ultimate blimp:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xDtqUg8R6Jw


Comment by Wipo on November 4, 2012 at 4:37am

nice, this blimp moves through the air like a shark through water.

Comment by Peter Meister on November 4, 2012 at 10:05am

I love this Blimp. I really hope we start a project again like this on DIYDRONES. I think these are great for UAVs and especially those just getting into the hobby. Easier to fly, easier to handle and cheaper too!

Comment by Cliff-E on November 5, 2012 at 1:11pm
That's cool for it to come back in a new version. I think it took 15 months for mine to finally leak nearly all its helium. Ah... Blimpduino-still sitting in the corner of my office.
Comment by Jack Crossfire on November 11, 2012 at 8:32pm

The blimp was always the ideal project for 3D absolute sonar positioning & "advanced image processing" still seems to be vapor, but in a buzzword driven market where the buzzword is optical flow, you don't have a choice about what to pursue.


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