Reach RTK Pixhawk integration released!


This landing looks so good like it is a reversed takeoff video. In reality this is a demonstration of using Reach RTK integrated with Pixhawk. This feature is now available for all ArduPilot based autopilots, including our beloved Navio+ and Navio2.


Only single radio has been used, with RTCM3 corrections tunneled through telemetry and Pixhawk. As Reach is equipped with Wi-Fi it is easy to connect to it and use Mission Planner to inject correction data into the MAVLink stream.


We got several requests from the ArduPilot developers not to use NMEA protocol for this integration as it does not carry all required data. GPS gives autopilot more than just location data. Speed, accuracy estimates, heading and more is required for ArduPilot to take full advantage of an RTK GPS. This is why we have added custom ERB (Emlid Reach Binary) protocol. For other autopilot systems NMEA output is available as well.


In this test flight we used ArduCopter 3.3.3-Reach, it is stable firmware with ERB protocol support added on top. We will provide custom builds for now, but considering that this code is already in master we expect to see full Reach RTK support in ArduCopter 3.4 . If you would like to build your own firmware, here is the related pull-request.



We have put together detailed docs about this integration that cover Pixhawk, Radio and Reach settings as well as Mission Planner GPS inject feature.

Reach users will need to perform an update through ReachView app. ArduPilot integration is available in version 0.3.0 or higher.  




All settings, status and logs are accessible through our user-friendly ReachView web app. It works on any device that has a browser. The app is hosted on Reach itself thus does not require internet connection to work. You can connect Reach to the internet for updates and NTRIP corrections.


Only four months since we have shipped first units to our Indiegogo backers and development is moving forward at a great speed! During this time we have been working restlessly adding new features, improving stability and overall user experience with Reach. This release brings an amazing feature - integration with ArduPilot based autopilots. New features also include Bluetooth solution output, which allows to output enhanced coordinates to a number of Android apps, automatic log conversion to RINEX and many more.

Best regards,

Emlid Team

P.S. You can also read an incredible report by Luke Wijnberg about using Reach for placing Ground Control Points for mapping and general surveying. 

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  • Selling an extra Emlid Reach RTK Kit if anyone is interested.  Only used for bench testing and setup...never flown!

  • Reach does not receive UHF signals, but it has a serial port that could be used to communicate with UHF radio.

  • Hi   Igor

    thank you for your answer .

    please tell me can REACH receive UHF signals ?

    Does it have antenna ?

    if yes for both questions how can we set UHF frequency of base station ?

  • Hi Pedram!

    It depends on which protocol your base station uses. Reach can accept RTCM2, RTCM3 as corrections and some other proprietary protocols.

  • Hi

    i have Surveying GNSS receiver that use it for surveying jobs .

    Base station send corrections via UHF signals .

    can REACH receive corrections from this base station ?

    thank you

  • @Caleb Scott  If there are no corrections Reach will output normal GPS solution. If you need precise navigation, you can just set approximate base coordinate or use our upcoming averaging feature, but if you are interested in accurate coordinates base position should be determine from another base using RTK. 

  • What is a good way to gather accurate coordinates for the base station if it will be moved to each area of operation? Im guessing that is what the automatic base averaging on Emilid's roadmap is to help with?

    Also, is there a good way to connect a module to U- Center for evaluation?

  • @stmpngrnd

    Thanks appreciated. I just want to be sure I can use reach for missiins and not worry about my data link going lost link and having to manually return to launch.

  • @Caleb Scott

    it will just revert to typical non rtk resolution if it looses too many satellites or base link. I have one with no secondary in a rover running a custom path following script on an arduino and it does just fine.

  • Im assuming we could use the Reach unit onboard as the primary and only positioning unit? Will it still work without receiving basestation corrections? The reason I am asking is in the case the data radio goes lost link.

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