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

Designing for air versus ground

Air is an entirely different beast from ground (or water) design. Everything affects the way an aerial drone flies. We mean literally everything. Let us take a look.


Weight doesn't just affect the ability of a drone to get airborne. That much is obvious. Let's take an example from my experience. In the following image, you'll see a monster-sized fixed wing drone (the Skywalker X-8) with a nearly 8-foot wingspan, sitting on a slingshot-style launcher (known as a jetapult):

I built this drone in 2011. I thought I was really smart. The maximum payload for takeoff is 3.2 kg. So, I packed it full of batteries because I wanted this drone to stay in the air for extended periods of time. It flew beautifully when I was on the sticks. The first time I tested it on autonomous flight, the wings (literally) blew right off the plane, and it turned into a very expensive lawn-dart. It was completely totalled. So, what happened?

I failed to take into account g-force. G...