3D Robotics

A big code release tonight--this is the full setup that won the Sparkfun autonomous vehicle competition. Along with general improvements to the code, this is the entire package of autopilot, setup utility and ground station code. It's a full Unmanned Aerial System, not just a UAV! ArduPilot 2.1
  • All the features of ArduPilot 2.0 plus...
  • Supports XY sensor in diagonal postion
  • Requires Z sensor [UPDATE: FMA is no longer carrying those. While we sort out alternative sources, you can buy them from Dean Goedde for $40 (scroll down for price list)
  • Controls throttle if airspeed sensor is attached via the ArduPilot expansion board.
  • Supports desktop setup utility for waypoints and autopilot settings. (Waypoints are no longer manually entered in the code. They can only be entered with this utility.)
  • Last version of the code to support the original ATMega168-based board. Future versions will require the new ATMega328-based board.
  • Field setup procedures are here
  • Get it here
If you are using the expansion board and airspeed sensor, to control the throttle you must solder a wire from digital pin 8 to "MUX IN 3" Desktop setup utility

  • Add waypoints manually; utility displays them on Google Maps
  • Set max altitude, speed, circle radius
  • Set elevator, aileron/rudder trim
  • More features coming
  • Get it here ("ArduPilotConfigUtility")
When using this utility for the first time with ArduPilot, click Write before anything else in order to format the EEPROM. Also, ensure that the "Set RTS on close" box is checked in your serial port's advanced properties (control panel/device manager), as described in our Arduino debugging tips) Ground station

  • Requires free Labview runtime engine and serial drivers (install both. Note: if you've already installed Lego's Mindstorms NXT software you may find you've got a driver conflict, because it's based on LabView, too. Uninstall the Mindstorms software first.)
  • Works with Xbee wireless modules
  • Displays real-time attitude, speed, altitude, current waypoint, heading, distance to next waypoint, etc
  • Displays real time position on Google Earth
  • Get it here
  • Source code is here
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  • In the Groundstation there is blue arrow on airspeed meter. What is for? Thanks
  • Admin

    What version of Ardupilot are you using? If you are using 2.2.3, then the baud rate should be 57.6k baud. If you are using 1.0, then it should be 9.6k baud.

  • Well I'm certainly getting lots of Chinese, which is more than I've been getting all day. I cycled through all the baud rates on my Port 4, I'll try the others. Thanks a ton man, you've been more helpful than Google and Arduino's own website combined.
  • Ok,

    Is the FTDI connected and is the ardupilot powered up ?
    If so go to realterminal, and set the baud rate to 9600....power off the ardupilot, and power it on. Connect to the com port that real terminal has enabled for the ftdi.
    You should start seeing information, if it looks chinese then the baud rate is wrong. So try 56,700 and keep changing the baud rate until you get data coming out the terminal....
  • Okay, I see how all this would work, but I'm a complete beginner when it comes to terminals/ports and baud numbers. I have a program called Realterminal and I'm not sure what I'm looking at or what I need to tell the program to look at. I have the Arduino hooked up via USB with the GPS plugged in, but I don't seem to be getting any data from it in Groundstation or Realterminal.
  • You can hook up the ardupilot to the PC via FTDI. Use Hyperterminal, or Arduino terminal and boot the ardupilot and you can then view the realtime comms via the terminal. Other then that, no other way. Also, this will be only on ground. So hardly likely you will get any airspeed info other then 0 speed unless you blow into the pitot.

    Google earth needs telemetry via its temp .kml communicating to the ardupilot. This is normally done via xbees connected to the ardupilot and the Ground station PC. Unless you develop your own .kml in google earth to communicate with another type of source, possibly the FTDI but I am not sure that would work.
  • I'm trying to get GPS and airspeed telemetry from the Ardupilot through groundstation, but my values all show up as zeroes and in Google Earth it thinks the plane is in the Atlantic Ocean. I'm not using Xbees, I just need to see what values the Ardupilot sees in the GPS and airspeed sensor in real time on my desk.
  • I'm actually not using Xbees, I don't have any at the moment. I guess my question is, is there ANY way to get real-time telemetry from Ardupilot to my computer from the GPS and airspeed sensors?
  • your xbees are not working properly.

    Did you bind them to same ID, same baud rate ?

    In the GCS click com port, does your com port show up properly.

    How are you hooking up the ardupilot to the xbees ? with adafruit adapter ?

    More info will help diagnose your problem...

  • I've got the latest Ardu pilot and I'm trying to get telemetry through ground station from both the GPS and airspeed sensors. So far all my measurement are coming up as zeroes and it says I'm in the Atlantic Ocean, any suggestions?
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