Thursday, April 29, 2010

Maiden Flight

After many frustrating nights of tuning our PID and a total of about 1.5 months of hard work, we decided to try our quadrotor.

We weren't completely happy with our PID terms, but we knew that we would only really be able to see how our unit responded while flying in air. We found a nice open area in the engineering building and set up camp. Our very first flight was a little rough but very promising! We could see that one derivative term was a little high on the pitch side, so we tuned that down a little and we could fly! We still have a huge amount of PID tuning to do, but this becomes worlds easier now that we can see our quadrotor actually flying. We broke some rotors on some rough landings, but nothing too serious. New landing gear helped us avoid too much damage.

This was a fantastic night. We took several videos of more than a minute of flight, and even then we only stopped flying because somebody had opened a door and a draft was flowing through the room that our sloppy PID couldn't handle well enough.

Finally, a good flight!


  1. Sweet flight dude! What's left for the senior design project?

  2. Lovely stuff! With fixed rotors. I dig it. Go study the FCS of a Chinook and you will know you are actually heroes to us rotor heads. Keep up the good work. -Ex-Turbine/UH1/Chinook Guy.

  3. Sweet! Excellent work. I'm trying to build a non-tilt quadrotor starting from scratch (as in I have NO electronics experience AT ALL) purely to see if it's possible to learn by jumping in the deep end. I'm bloody impressed by this! Glad to see some of my design ideas are same as yours (2 clockwise and 2 counterclockwise rotors to allow yaw from natural rotor lateral torque). Doubt I will have anything flying soon though, still at the flashing LEDs stages... ;)

  4. Not bad... You guys need a heli pilot.