ArduPilot Mega v1.0 Alpha 1 release

The ArduPilot Mega development team is pleased to announce the public release of ArduPilot Mega v1.0 Alpha 1 test firmware. It is located here

If you are ready please feel free to test the code. The best place to start is with the manual which is located here

Please note
  1. There are libraries that you will need to install in your Arduino IDE for this firmware to work.
  2. This code is under development so there are lots of holes. Currently it supports MANUAL, STABILIZE, FLY_BY_WIRE_A, AUTO, RTL, and LOITER flight modes, a small number of a larger set of commands that will be implemented, and on board data logging. Currently it does not support any gps other than ublox, absolute or differential (airspeed) pressure sensors, magnetometer, battery voltage measurement, telemetry or uplink (some downlink available through Serial0), take-off or landing, and a bunch of other stuff
  3. The code is not compatible with the ArduPilot configuration tool. There is a waypoint (command) writer tool available in the tools directory of the repository, but no documentation available yet.
  4. The code is not currently compatible with the ground station.
We have successfully tested all flight modes. However this is an alpha release of code still under development. If you are expecting to just download it and have everything work, you are jumping on board too early. If you want to start learning about setting a UAV up with this system and learning about the features and options of the code then give it a go!
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  • Developer
    @stm10 and many countries there are laws that forces you to use approved r/c electronics to control your flying things. If you are not use radio/receiver systems designed for hobby use, you need to apply all type of approvals and certifications from your local aviation officials. And well you can figure the costs and efforts it needs :)

    I you did not yet find ArduCopter code let me know. Tho it's even more alpha than ArduPilot code :)
  • 3D Robotics
    @stm10. It's technically capable of that (and you can do that with fixed wing on basic ArduPilot now), but the current APM code is not there yet. We're just in alpha, and beta is still to come. You're looking at 1.0, which is a Sept target.

    But even then, you'd still want RC control, both to set up and tweak the platform and to regain control in case of a problem. I don't think we'd ever encourage anyone to operate APM without RC equipment onboard. Flying robots are a lot harder than ground-based ones!
  • Thanks for the feedback hopslink, Sgt Ric & Chris. I guess I was hoping I could try and just program it to simply take-off, hover and then land again; VTOL style, nothing elaborate. Could something like that be supported on this platform - if so what kind of dynamics would I need to consider?
  • 3D Robotics

    SgtRic is right. Don't use this without RC equipment. We're a year away from that level of quad autonomy.
  • Moderator
    "..I'm not using the RC equipment..." ??
  • ArduPilot Mega code is an autopilot for planes. Have a search for ArduCopter which is a controller for quads/helis based round the same hardware.
  • Could someone provide a brief description of how the ArduPilot Mega v1.0 Alpha 1 code works. How would I get my quad-rotor to just simply hover using this source code. I'm just using the ArduPilot Mega Board & the ArduPilot Mega IMU shield, I'm not using the RC equipment and GPS or Xbee wireless modules?
  • Developer
    @Torin - and please report any gps issues you find. I have not tested the MTK....
  • @ Doug Weibel
    Thanks Doug for your advice.
  • @Chris Anderson - Thanks Chris - I'll use alpha release and the libraries from Arducopter for the MTK GPS.
    Much appreciated!
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