APM Copter V3.1 on Pixhawk and VR Brain boards


This is my first public video with the new Pixhawk board revision 2.4 and for "par condicio" a new one with VR Brain, both install "APM Copter V3.1" code.
After intensive testing the stability of the system is impressive, with this release the APM Copter Developer Team has achieved equal result, if not superior, to the companies that produce closed systems like DJI.
We have so much still to be improved, a small italian team is studying now a new flight mode called "Hybrid Loiter" that allow you to fly more smoothly as "DJI Position Hold", same feeling of flying with "Alt-Hold" mode, just wish we could have something ready i'll post a video with the final result.
I often read of unwanted crash or fly-away, personally with the V3.x code i've hundreds hours of flight without ever having had a single crash, if the hardware is well-balanced/assembled, and the tuning is done as it should be "APM Copter" provides excellent stability and security.

My special thanks to the whole APM Copter Team for having opened the new year with this milestone release, and to 3DRobotics and Virtual Robotix Italia.

Enjoy your flying and fly safe!

Bests, Marco

Views: 5962

Comment by Guto Santaella on January 2, 2014 at 4:31am

Hi Marco, please, have you(or 3DR) a suggested parameter list for an hexacopter with pixhawk/PX4 system?

I did not tried the auto tune on PX4, and if it works


Comment by Marco Robustini on January 2, 2014 at 4:43am

As soon i post here the settings that I'm using now.
Autotune work fine, every so often fails because it starts with the wrong parameters too.

3D Robotics
Comment by Chris Anderson on January 2, 2014 at 8:32am

Love the videos and would like to hear more about "Hybrid Loiter". The dev team has been working on a mode where it automatically switches from Loiter to Alt Hold when you move the sticks, to allow for more natural flight, then switches back to Loiter when you center the sticks again. So it feels like Loiter when you want it to stay in one place, but flies more aggressively when you want it to move. 

Does that sound the same as Hybrid Loiter?

Comment by Roberto Navoni on January 2, 2014 at 8:37am

I Chris ,

i know that there is some guys in italy that are working on that ... The nick is Sonico and i know that doing some test it work fine without wind and now are working on a new revision that could support also wind condition .. the main difference i think is the integral in loiter condition when you stop to fly in alt hold .

I don't see the source code at the moment ... 

We are doing a lot of experiment .... also on different kind of frame and drone configuration ... now i'm testing a ParaGlider ... and in the next month start to test boxwing configuration ... 

Comment by Vince Hogg on January 2, 2014 at 11:18am

Marco, are you using the 90A APM power module on the hexa? I guess that must be enough amps?

How would you power the pixhawk with a bigger machine?

I have just posted in the pixhawk hardware forum before seeing your post.

Comment by titeuf007 on January 2, 2014 at 11:32am

i can t imagine what will be arducopter in few years..

it will be the safer,better plateform available on the market

i hope the hardware release by diydrone will be  the same level that the code..

Comment by Marco Robustini on January 2, 2014 at 12:34pm

Hi Vince, on big machine i use a good BEC tuned at 5.3V and for measure the LiPo voltage I created a voltage divider, then injecting the ouput into the port of the Power Module, to the right pin.
I've in my hands (thanks Craig)
a prototype of the new "Power Module V2", which bear high amperage and over 6s LiPo, i will test it as soon as possible.
@Chris: yes, it's sound the same as Hybrid Loiter, but i was not aware that someone in the team we were working.
I wrote my request about this "Loiter handicap" when repositioning on the dev list but I was not aware of the development, good!

Comment by Jack Crossfire on January 2, 2014 at 2:15pm

Time to start selling a collective pitch quad.

Comment by Jason Short on January 2, 2014 at 2:17pm

Marco, I have a "hybrid Loiter" scheme in the works as well. It uses the similar algorithms as Drift mode. 


Comment by Marco Robustini on January 2, 2014 at 2:43pm

Hi Jason, wow... where is it? :-)


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