Book Image

Designing Purpose-Built Drones for Ardupilot Pixhawk 2.1

By : Ty Audronis
Book Image

Designing Purpose-Built Drones for Ardupilot Pixhawk 2.1

By: Ty Audronis

Overview of this book

The Ardupilot platform is an application ecosystem that encompasses various OS projects for drone programming, flight control, and advanced functionalities.The Ardupilot platform supports many Comms and APIs, such as DroneKit, ROS, and MAVLink. It unites OS drone projects to provide a common codebase. With the help of this book, you will have the satisfaction of building a drone from scratch and exploring its many recreational uses (aerial photography, playing, aerial surveillance, and so on). This book helps individuals and communities build powerful UAVs for both personal and commercial purposes. You will learn to unleash the Ardupilot technology for building, monitoring, and controlling your drones.This is a step-by-step guide covering practical examples and instructions for assembling a drone, building ground control unit using microcontrollers, QgroundControl, and MissionPlanner. You can further build robotic applications on your drone utilizing critical software libraries and tools from the ROS framework. With the help of DroneKit and MAVLink (for reliable communication), you can customize applications via cloud and mobile to interact with your UAV.
Table of Contents (16 chapters)
Title Page
About the Author
About the Reviewer
Customer Feedback

Using LIDAR to avoid obstacles

Would you like to go for a walk on a golf course blindfolded? No? Me neither, and it's probably not good to just set a rover to run around blind either. But vision and object recognition takes a lot more computing power than we're budgeted for on this machine. So, what's the next best thing to vision? SONAR or LIDAR. Unfortunately, SONAR (just like a bat finds insects using sound waves to calculate the distance to obstacles) is considered passé for Pixhawk, and thus the implementation is quite wonky. There are I2C sonar devices, but they don't work very well (if at all) with Pixhawk 2.1 and the latest Ardupilot firmware. So, we're going to use LIDAR instead. LIDAR rangefinders use light waves (instead of sound) to calculate the distance to objects.


LIDAR simply uses a light wave to send out, bounce off objects, and then looks for it to return. Since light travels at 299,792,458 m/s, all the LIDAR module has to do is measure the time it takes to return...