Ardustation Mega with Graphic LCD



I’d like to share my latest hardware ground control station. I call it the ArduStation Mega.

It retains all the features found on the DIYDrones Ardustation, as well as my Ardustation Uno but with some very important upgrades.
Notably the main processor has been upgraded to an ATmega2560 giving 8 times the size of both flash and ram, amongst other things :)

Also there is a graphical LCD that should provide a larger, more user friendly display.

The extra serial ports (4 in total) will enable future expansions as and when required. One is dedicated to the USB for loading software as well as potentially being used to allow a computer to share the installed Xbee.

If you don’t want to use an Xbee, or want to use more than one, that’s fine- three of the serial ports are broken out to the left of the board. These could also be used for adding a GPS unit, or perhaps a bluetooth to pc link for example.

Also broken out is the i2c port, so you can link it up to a magnetometer if need be (could make for simpler antenna tracking alignment)

A micro SD card will allow data logging, parameter saving, mission uploading and hopefully more!

The rotary encoder (like a radio’s jog dial) should help with faster navigation / value editing. The buttons are also on a separate PCB such that they can be mounted flush with the display or separately subject to enclosure constraints. (Also this means I can change the layout of the buttons)

The battery supply and Xbee RSSI are connected to give health information on voltage and telemetry link signal strength. Additional analog pins are also broken out for monitoring external sensors.
The PCB has been sized to match the dimensions of the LCD, giving a neat install that can be attached with screws and spacers. All of the components are mounted on the inside as well, such that the total unit size is minimised.
As with my Uno version, I use a single cell LiPo for the battery source, with an efficient step up regulator for the 5v supply. There’s also inbuilt USB charging.

The antenna tracking will be achieved by the two servo headers on the right hand side of the board. These also have a solder jumper for selecting off-board power in case heavy duty servos are to be used.

Please let me know what you think!

If you want to see more, here's a video of me showing it off:
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  • ok tested outside. Servos work as soon as I have GPS Fix.

  • hmm I tested the ASM with GPS reception.

    when I connect with the drone, I was inside and both systems had no gps signal so far...

    maybe I should test outside.

    the only jumper I see is affecting the servo voltage. voltmeter shows 5.2 V

    But both servos have no Force.... 

  • I'm still testing my ASM, encoder works fine, but i had to change jumpersetting to get the servo working

  • Thank you very much Patrick, by the way, is the Ardustation mega (ASM) a standalone unit, why i'm asking is i have connected a 3dr radio to the ASM linking to a 3dr radio on the ardupilot, (that Works), now,can i connect missionplanner on a pc via the asm usb port, and pass data to the ardupilot via asm 3dr radio,

  • I am testing my new Ardustation Mega, using a Mediatek GPS. With the corrected code (#define GPS_PROTOCOL GPS_PROTOCOL_MTK19), it works fine.

    Also Link with 3DR telemetry is fine. 

    But I wonder if I need a rotary switch.

    I really want to use the station as an Antenna Tracker, but the code (tracker.h, tracker.,ino) is quite short.

    and I don't get really servo for pan only goes 170°.

    and the servos are just quite. seems to have no pwm at all???? any ideas?

    I can switch to different pages

  • Hi Kim,

    3s is still working fine. I used 2s and 3s for testing so far.

    schematic doesn't give a hint... but I would not go over 15V for now

  • Hi ppl, i can't see anywhere what the max voltage on the battery cabel, anyone here knowing that

  • Jani,

    Any plans of making the eagle files public?


  • @Jani

    Thanks a million for the heads-up. :) much appreciated.

  • Developer

    Madhu if you have not taken look yet, take a look at jDrones document site for ASM board and it's layouts

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