Communication, communication, communication!

By | September 27, 2019

For the last few weeks the CanberraUAV skunkworks has been busy working on solutions to the 2020 Medical Rescue UAV Challenge problems.

We see the 12 km video link between the Quadcopter and the ground control station as the biggest challenge for 2020. The Quad will be in a shed videoing ‘Outback Joe’ whilst sending video via one of our trusty Porter aircraft back to the ground station where it is being controlled from. We always try to have redundancy in our systems, so we’re working on two seperate communications links to achieve this. One of these makes innovative use of our trusty RFD900Xs and another one that uses some amazing new radios that have been kindly donated to us by Airborne Innovations and MicroHard. These radios are video and audio capable with telemetry & control and an option for manual control with an SBUS passthrough module. They claim solid video data rates at 5 miles with basic antenna; Airborne Innovations  has donated some pretty special antennae to boost that range. We’re pretty excited to get our hands on them! More on these when we have tested them.

Tridge and Matt have been working hard on developing a new video encoder that can reduce the bandwidth and lower the latency sending video back to the ground station over RFD900Xs with MAVlink. We’ve made a good start but we have quite a way to go!

We’re hoping to give the Airborne Innovations and MicroHard  pMDDL2450 radios a test this weekend, so we’ll report back then.

Here’s a taster of what else we’ve been working on for the next update!