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News: Build your own GPS and camera equipped multi rotor

Drones have been in the news a lot in recent times, but here is a good news drone story for a change.

A team of roboticists in the US have developed an open source hardware platform called 'APM autopilot', based on Arduino, that can be installed in radio controlled multicopters and aeroplanes to unleash full autonomous capabilities.

The APM platform utilises GPS and a range of other sensors including a barometers, a gyroscope and a compass. When coupled with Mission Planner software running on a laptop you can pre-program a flight using waypoints and the craft will take off, follow the pre-determined route and land, without any user intervention.

The APM autopilot also means that a multicopter can be built and controlled using a radio control transmitter whilst benefitting from stabilisation. Features such as Altitude Hold, Loiter and Circle can all be commanded from the controller. Most will carry a GoPro with ease, larger ones can carry full size DSLRs.

With a rapidly growing community of builders, you can choose from pre-assembled kits or build your own by assembling a frame, motors and other components, plus the APM autopilot. More advanced builds have ground links with telemetry and even live video downlinks.

Source: Arducopter.co.uk

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Posted on Thursday, June 20 @ 05:19:46 UTC by Darren Griffin

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