We have just heard from @uavchallenge that we have passed the D2 stage and continue in the competition!
EllaO also wants you to know that she took these photos of the QuadStar that did a number of auto missions to test new software updates today.
We’re very excited that our second deliverable for the 2018 UAV Challenge has been submitted. Just a few stressful weeks until we receive our Go/No-Go from the organisers.
In the mean time, we have got lots of work to do. In particular we need to make some technological improvements to our OctoPorter to improve it’s reliability and refine the build of the Kraken.
We’ve also got work to do on our autonomous target location based on our new Raspberry Pi based automated image recognition software and development of the ArduPilot code to deal with Dynamic No Fly Zones. Watch this space for updates!
We’ll keep you updated as we go. Thank you very much to our family, friends and supporters! Don’t forget that we really appreciate donations to our Patreon account to help us fund our project. We put all of our work straight back into the ArduPilot community and make our autonomous image recognition software available to all; please consider contributing if you get use or pleasure out of this like we do!
Our Patreon account is here: https://www.patreon.com/canberrauav
Yesterday we enjoyed a beautiful Canberra morning flying the OctoPorter. We did thorough ground checks and some manual take-off / landing cycles before a full auto mission. The landing from the auto-mission is in this video; what an amazing sight and sound! We are excited to have the opportunity to make a number of software and hardware upgrades to the aircraft to make it more reliable and capable for the UAV Challenge this year.
Tridge presented at the Linux Conference Australia this week. Here’s his presentation:
CanberraUAV prides itself in being a responsible civilian not-for-profit organisation; a key part of this is conducting our flying activities in a safe manner. We understand the responsibility that we have as members of the aviation community; in the spirit of that community it is important that we talk about the safety aspects of our hobby. We aborted a mission on Sunday before it had even started; here’s why
A number of flight safety ‘human factors’ began to line-up during our usual Sunday flying period at our home field. Time became compressed due to availability of key members. Due to some technical development activity, the mission was delayed until around 1130 and a significant ‘rush’ to get airborne was felt within a final 20 minute availability window. By this time heat was fairly extreme on the field (37℃+).
A number of failures were experienced whilst setting up the bungee cord which was then modified ‘on the fly’ and was to be connected to a bungee launch mechanism that had not been tested on a live launch. Our ‘spider senses’ told us that we were about to push our luck. Only a minute or two until the launch, the group ‘called it’ and cancelled the mission before any launches were attempted.
It is good practice to maintain perspective on the situation when you fly. In this case it really wasn’t crucial to conduct that mission at that time and too many things hadn’t gone quite as planned in the preparation. Flight Safety experts talk about the holes lining up in the ‘swiss cheese’; those ‘holes’ are all individual events. When those ‘holes’ line up, or happen together, that can amount to enough issues to cause an accident. At the bleeding edge of open source UAV development accidents do sometimes happen, but we don’t just accept that crashing is ‘normal’ when we don’t need to. In this case a rushed launch could have caused a heavily damaged airframe. That would have cost money and put back imagery data collection efforts causing longer term issues for our UAV Challenge project. This way, the Opterra lives to collect another day!
CanberraUAV was one of 55 teams to pass Deliverable 1 for the 2018 UAV Challenge! The next deliverable is in April 2018, where we need to specify our systems and safety in more detail.
A complete list of all passing teams is available at https://uavchallenge.org/medical-express/2018-medical-express-teams/
Additonally, our Deliverable 1 report can be found at http://canberrauav.readthedocs.io/en/latest/lessons/OBC2018.html