Next Generation of Ground Station


Since I entered into the drone world I've had a problem with the concept of taking my laptop out into the field with me, but as a new (hopeless) pilot I would often like to know more about what's happening with my hexa as it's flying.  To solve this issue I got myself an Ardustation, only to find that it didn't have all the information on it that I was looking for, and the text screen, while great in sunlight left something to be desired...

So, I have started work on what I'd consider the 'Next Generation' of Ardustation, it's based on an Arduino 2560, and a 3.2" TFT Touchscreen...

I've included a GPS for local positioning and future (very near) "Follow Me" functionality, my plan is to pack as much functionality into the unit as I can so that out in the field we can all have a ground station that is more robust than a laptop but just as functional.

so far I have functions to change the mode, a basic HUD (this is limited by the processing power of the 2560 & bandwidth of the display interface), a Flight map, and some debugging code to view the data that is being received over the Xbee.

It should be mentioned that I've lifted some of the code from the Ardustation 2 software, but it has been largely modified by myself to collect more data and simplify program flow.

Let me know what you think?!  if there is enough interest in the project I will publish the code, parts list, and a concise 'how to' on constructing the unit.

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  • OK so i got the Setup and managed to upload the code with Visual micro but i can't run it at debug with FastSerial.

    can any one assist on that matter?


  • Can someone share how to get the IDE up and running for this project?

    i have VS 2013 and i installed Visual micro that i saw was used for this development, but the project won't build.

    can you tell me what arduino IDE version used?

  • Developer

    you mind share your LCD's technical details? As most of what we have been testing are not so visible in daylight and we have been testing several displays between 250 nits to 450 nits (cd/m2) for our highluminance groundstations we are using 1600 nits displays and that is something that is bright enough in direct sunlight even in our region. 

  • I imagine that all of the Ardustation Mega features were forked in the initial Ardustation 3 (and later rewritten mostly, I think) at the time. I feel the TFT/LCD screen I have selected is quite visible in the daylight.

  • Developer

    Yes, there is already rather good software originally written by Colin for ArduStaton Mega. That could be transferred to Ardustation 3 rather quickly. We have already several touch screens working but main problem on those screens is that they are not well visible on daylight. Currently waiting some new test displays to come to see how they works on broad daylight. ArduStation Mega uses GLCD display that you can see easier on daylight.  

  • Anyone else interested in collaborating on Ardustation3? It seems Jesse is pretty busy with other stuff. I feel that for <$50 + GPS ($40?) / telemetry ($25?) and a 3D enclsure we could get something quite amazing going. 

  • Support Maestro? :)

  • The project for full replacement of the laptop? :)

  • Sadly. :(

  • I hadn't considered it to be honest, but it's most defiantly possible.

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