BreezeUAV : An open-source autopilot for UAV


Hi everyone,

I'm happy to share with you today BreezeUAV.

BreezeUAV is an autopilot running on Arduino Mega 2560 which allow the user to do some automatic missions or to fly in "semi-automatic" mode with a Joystick. In fact, instead of controlling the surface controls of the airplane, the joystick define the euler angles desired. Then the autopilot, using PID controllers, stabilize the UAV.

I first decide to implement the whole system on a Yak 54 which is a 3D airplane. Of course it's not a trainer or a beginner airplane, but it's really powerful and it's not influenced so much by wind.

I also developed a ground station in Java Eclipse RCP 4 which allow the user to track the airplane, save the data and replay them latter.


After weeks of ground testing, I enjoyed yesterday a bit of a flight. But because I used Xbee Pro without antenna, I lost control of the airplane few hundreds meters away. Hopefully I just received a new pair of xbee pro 868 Mhz with 2.5dB antenna which I will be able to test soon.

I decided to start from scratch at the beginning just because I enjoy so much programming in C/C++, but some parts of the code are directly inspired by ArduPilot. I hope in the future that I will design my own aircraft inspired by the Penguin ( project and implement some on-board image computing.

I hope you will enjoy and follow my project :

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  • Thanks you for your comments.

    About the Xbee868 I didn't know that there was a duty cycle. This is not great at all ! Actually I will maybe use two way of communication for safety and different use. 2.4Ghz for high data rate, and 868 low long distance telemetry.

    I'm also interested in the new arduino zero coming soon apparently. 

    In few days I will fly again with the current code, I hope to upload a video :)

  • 3D Robotics

    Nice work! I understand the instinct to create something like this from scratch, and you got a lot further than I did, back when I was writing code (seven years ago, hard to believe it's been so long).

  • Hi Adrien,

    nice project, I know the feeling of developing something from scratch to work :-)

    Just an advice about the XBee868 from my experience: Take care about the duty cycle with these units. It´s limited to 10% and if you exceed it (calculated for 60 minutes, can happen fast) the module won´t transmit for the rest of the hour... For "normal" UAV projects and especially manual control like you do it, the 2.4GHz modules are the better choice. Range of up to 1km should be no problem.

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