3D Robotics

Announcing T-3, Round 3: The Reliability Round


It's time for the third round of the third round of the second season of the Trust Time Trial (T3) competion! Now that the weather is improving, there are no excuses for not participating. Valuable prizes await!

This the Reliability Round. Our Judge, Gary Mortimer, describes the rules below:

--------------------------------------   RULES   ------------------------

Point of order first: All T3 entries should be flown away from built up areas. Should you have any fly aways or incidents its best to have them miles from anyone else.

The aim of this round is to show reliability.

A very simple task: autonomously fly to a point that you have chosen that is at least 300 metres from your takeoff point (100m for copters). At an altitude of 75 meters (25m for copters) autonomously take a single photo of your point, then return to launch, land (manually or autonomously) and do it all again. Repeat this for a total of five flights.

Your entry should show your take off and landing times for each flight as well as KMLs showing the slight path. As always, post your entries in the comments below.

Each individual image will be compared and the person with the most shots with the chosen point in the centre of the image wins.

Honesty is everything here, don't discover that by chance a point you didn't select is in the centre of each shot and then tell us that's what you were after all along.


If you can make something interesting with your shots extra points will be forthcoming

You might make a map using MapKnitter Have a look around here to find out what its all about hereDo something with Photosynth, ICE or any of the other similar mapping products springing up. Wouldn't it be nice to have a DIYD generated layer of opensource map images out there!

So in summary one day, five flights, five photos. Extra points for creative use of mapping software/services.

What you do with any other images is up to you. Impress us.

Why the pub challenges in the image above? Well I was looking at a dart board when I thought of it. 

As an aside the area in the picture will be underwater next year, a dam wall is being built on the right. The big circles are irrigation centre pivots just the sort of thing a farmer might be interested at looking at from a UAS


There will be three winners in each category (planes and copters), with the #1s getting a $100 gift certificate at the DIY Drones store and #2 and #3 getting $25 each.

All entrants who successfully compete the course with a copter, regardless of place in the judging, will receive a flying robot merit badge!


Deadline is Sunday, May 13th, at midnight PST. 

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  • I think a flying altitude of 50 meters (fixed wing) will make it really hard to take still-photos with enough overlap to be suitable for use in any mapping software/services.

    Maybe 100m would be better?

  • oooh im going to have a go at this one - in theory plenty of time as ive flown a series of successful tests with camera in the past couple of weeks.


    will have to implement shutter control to take stills, but thats not the end of the world.  also, to comply 100% with the "flown away from built up areas" rule im considering a really wild mountaintop location, do i get extra points for that? ;)



  • can Rovers have a go with a camera on a really long stick.  Seiously though,  what if a rover went out 100m,  took a shot of a white disk on the ground and then returned to home.  Did that 5 times from different positions or the same home position. Would this be a contender?  Being at ground level,  we would have to be a lot closer to the target to get a good shot.  Zoom lenses obviously not allowed :) 

  • 3D Robotics

    Krzys: Good catch. Those altitude figures were supposed to be feet, not meters. I've now updated and expressed the targets in meters. 

  • T3

    smbody wrote:

    "Maybe I try this one litle bit modified, low passes near launch point between "stages"."

    So, is low pass below say 30m agl above launch point counted/allowed as landing or do we want to eat the dirt (testing lens protection etc)?

    BTW 130m AGL is slightly above 400ft AGL. How about 122m or 120m.

  • The go pro can take a snapshot every 2 sec . The gopro2 can take 2 snapshot each second

  • Hi Chris,

    is there a place, that i you can see a T-3 standings?

  • @Chris and Robert -- Right, thanks. That's a new and interesting challenge for me, since I've only used a video camera, to date.

  • 3D Robotics

    Philip: a still photo, please. 

  • @Philip, I'm not sure, that seems a bit like the "shotgun approach"?  Similarly, is it in the spirit of the competition to a camera shooting 10 fps continuously?

    @Andreas, my opinion, but using the "copter" parameters for a helicopter is kind of an unfair advantage.  If I manage to do this, I might try the long range challenge with the copter.  I'm pretty sure it could fly the 5 x 2 x 50m distance on a single battery pack. I'd just have to do some touch and goes at the LZ.

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