Almost exactly one year after the first PX4 announcement, we would like to introduce our newest member of the family, Pixhawk! For those familiar with the existing PX4 electronics, it is the all-in-one board combining PX4FMU + PX4IO, combined with a processor and sensor update and a number of new features. The current board revisions will however remain in full service and active development and are fully compatible. Pixhawk is designed for improved ease of use and reliability while offering unprecedented safety features compared to existing solutions.

Pixhawk is designed by the PX4 open hardware project and manufactured by 3D Robotics. It features the latest processor and sensor technology from ST Microelectronics which delivers incredible performance and reliability at low price points.

The flexible PX4 middleware running on the NuttX Real-Time Operating System brings multithreading and the convenience of a Unix / Linux like programming environment to the open source autopilot domain, while the custom PX4 driver layer ensures tight timing. These facilities and additional headroom on RAM and flash will allow Pixhawk the addition of completely new functionalities like programmatic scripting of autopilot operations.

The PX4 project offers its own complete flight control stack, and projects such as APM:Copter and APM:Plane have ported their software to run as flight control applications. This allows existing APM users to seamlessly transition to the new Pixhawk hardware and lowers the barriers to entry for new users to participate in the exciting world of autonomous vehicles.

The flagship Pixhawk module will be accompanied by new peripheral options, including a digital airspeed sensor, support for an external multi-color LED indicator and an external magnetometer. All peripherals are automatically detected and configured.


  • 32 bit ARM Cortex M4 Processor running NuttX RTOS

  • 14 PWM / Servo outputs (8 with failsafe and manual override, 6 auxiliary,

    high-power compatible)

  • Abundant connectivity options for additional peripherals (UART, I2C, CAN)

  • Integrated backup system for in-flight recovery and manual override with

    dedicated processor and stand-alone power supply

  • Backup system integrates mixing, providing consistent autopilot and manual

    override mixing modes

  • Redundant power supply inputs and automatic failover

  • External safety switch

  • Multicolor LED main visual indicator

  • High-power, multi-tone piezo audio indicator

  • microSD card for long-time high-rate logging

  • 32bit STM32F427 Cortex M4 core with FPU

  • 168 MHz

  • 256 KB RAM

  • 2 MB Flash

  • 32 bit STM32F103 failsafe co-processor

  • ST Micro L3GD20H 16 bit gyroscope

  • ST Micro LSM303D 14 bit accelerometer / magnetometer

  • MEAS MS5611 barometer

  • 5x UART (serial ports), one high-power capable, 2x with HW flow control

  • 2xCAN

  • Spektrum DSM / DSM2 / DSM-X® Satellite compatible input

  • Futaba S.BUS® compatible input and output

  • PPM sum signal

  • RSSI (PWM or voltage) input

  • I2C®

  • SPI

  • 3.3 and 6.6V ADC inputs

  • External microUSB port

Power System and Protection

  • Ideal diode controller with automatic failover

  • Servo rail high-power (up to 10V) and high-current ready (10A +)

  • All peripheral outputs over-current protected, all inputs ESD protected

  • Monitoring of system and servo rails, over current status monitoring of peripherals


  • Weight: 38g (1.31oz)

  • Width: 50mm (1.96")

  • Thickness: 15.5mm (.613")

  • Length: 81.5mm (3.21") 


This announcement is a service to our users and developers to allow them to plan their hardware roadmaps in time, and to show what we're currently working on. The board will not be immediately available, but 3D Robotics is taking pre-orders for Pixhawk now, and will begin shipping in late October [Update 11/11: the current expected ship date is late Nov]. The price is $199.99.

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  • Admin


    Based on the informational posts that Chris has made on this discussion thread, I would venture to say that the Pixhawk being shipped now to 3DR customers is the cumulation of a substantial amount of in-field testing and design iteration and is definitely not a "pre-release" product.


    TCIII ArduRover2 Developer 

  • i'd like to purchase the pixhawk but I'm still unclear if it is a 'pre-release' still, or has been deemed stable enough for general use. can anyone give me a clear indication of this? thanks!

  • Distributor

    I have ordered a lot - long time ago - and still didn't receive any shipment notification ...

  • when can we expect accessories for this autopilot to be available for purchase?

  • Admin

    Hi All,

    Chris is good to his word. I just received my Pixhawk this morning courtesy of FedEx. Way to go Chris and 3DR!!!


    TCIII ArduRover2 Developer

  • Comment by Chris Anderson on Monday

    "Pixhawk will start shipping this week. Announcement on Monday or Tues."

    Hmmmm, in the UK it seems to be Wednesday?


  • David and most others, couldn't agree more. These things always evolve but that's part of it and part of the fun. I'd rather jump on board from the beginning, get, learn and have a complete understanding of the hardware and any software changes. Especially considering the success of 3dr and what they've provided and the open source community. I don't care if they're "big business" now or on their way, it's because we all supported them and tested their products and provided feedback and they delivered on that. I couldn't be happier for them and "us". Excited to give test it out when it arrives and will continue to do so. Plain and simple, I like the product and the support.
  • @ Richard

    Don't take me wrong. The thing we now ride is not a help the little guy anymore. We aren't getting good stuff any easier - Linux was one of the proofs. Maybe time will change but, a company has to turn a profit and they have to manage roll outs and prices. So, you won't be flying a 3DR at a Walkera LadyBird price. If anything they will be upstream real soon. We don't need to get into too many details about these. We also don't need to think it is the feel the loving giving spirit to help the little guy when they are not little anymore. We need to now adjust our reality that it is not guys huddling in a dorm., coming home from work at another company and slaving with just the love of having a cool time. Now, they are cool guys with good incomes doing what they love. They ARE taken care of now. Gee, I wish I had that kind of job too. But, we do need to create another Open Source - Chris has lamented in the past that few to none have stepped up to revise and evolve the APM platform. There is still and will continue to be a BIG market for that badboy board. It has more capabilities than most all will need. It just needs some TLC to make it a better board.  ---- I'll go. Thanks for the chat guys. You guys ARE Great! Realize - This has NEVER been in ALL the history of MAN!!!

  • @Brian Stott

    Ya, I know what you mean... DIY  is fine when you have the time and energy, but sometimes that's in short supply.

    And yes, I do see new people come to the site and expect a RTF product and I sometimes wonder if the 3DR line is ready for that (?).

  • @ Sgt Ric

    Yeah DIY spirit - You are right...   LOL. I'm sitting with at least five interwoven cutting edge projects and staring at you guys wanting a Pixhawk. I am getting the I wants too!  :-O I am also simply tempering the business owners/sellers to not be too expectant of it being hard and solid. I've been there too. We see companies and people losing to the greed all the time. I still fight the next great thing urge. <laugh again.> I've got the pile to prove it. I'm not wanting to be water or oil on the fire. Just adjusting the heat a little.  ;-)


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