This video presents the latest iteration of  IDSC's Flying Machine Arena failsafe algorithm (previous post here). In this video there's a pilot flying the quadrocopter while the algorithm is executed on the quadrocopter's onboard micro-controller. The only sensors required are the quadrocopter's angular rate gyroscopes.

You can read more on the description of the video (

You can read an older article about the failsafe algorithm mentioned above with more details and photos here:

Quadrocopter failsafe algorithm: Recovery after propeller loss

(take a look at the comments below!) 

You can also read Robohub's coverage on Amazon's Prime Air and other Quadcopter related articles.

(video link via M.Waibel)

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  • Very cool that it's working outdoors.

    We've been wanting/experimenting on a controller on APMs that mimics maple seed-like/controlled descent (via yaw) for some time. Never got it work though. This looks pretty robust in matching that type of motion (likely PX4).

  • Distributor

    wow... as usual it now looks so simple! :) 

    great job guys to "port" this from the confine of the Vicon system to the outside world. 

    from the link : This new approach allows such a vehicle to remain in flight despite the loss of one, two, or even three propellers. Having lost one (or more) propellers, the vehicle enters a continuous rotation — we then control the direction of this axis of rotation, and the total thrust that the vehicle produces, allowing us to control the vehicle’s acceleration and thus position.

    in short when extreme angles not planned are detected (something wrong must be happening!) it enters blender mode ( I like that one Doug, it should stick to that name) 

    the only "bad" thing is now they are going to patent such algorithm (or the principle)... 

    This technology is patent pending.

    still a marvelous effort! 

  • The link of the Robohub article mentioned above is now updated:

    Take a look and don't forget to also read the comments with direct replies from Mark W. Mueller, the main researcher for this project ;)

  • Excellent!

    I will call this either the 'scrambled egg recovery' or 'blender rescue' technique; perfectly suitable as compared to

    destruction of the aircraft and/or payload.

    Well done, Bravo!


  • I would settle for a complete description of the algorithm.. but a reference implementation would be a LOT nicer..


  • Please release the code as free software for a safe drone world.

  • @Jethro

    The algo prolly has a pid system for angular movement, which complements the straight movement currently used by multicopters now.

  • This is absolute genius! To see it functioning without the motion capture, in a real world situation is remarkable! This should be added to the code as soon as possible!! I wonder if the effect works on larger quadcopters with gimbals or other payloads. How does the COG affect the algorithm?

  • we need it for arducopter!!!!!!!

  • Brilliant!  Want it.

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