Autoquad in france....

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Autoquad in france....

Postby whizz101 » Sun Dec 18, 2016 8:44 pm

The regulations for operating drones in France is set to become more difficult from the 1st January 2017. The rules that used to apply only for urban environments are now being extended to flights in non-urban environments.

The rules stipulate that in most situations, if your drone is above 2kg you will need the following; 1. A flight termination system, and 2. Gps geofencing , plus many other conditions that AQ already meets.

Both of these at first seem relatively simple to conform to with autoquad, but the devil is in the details.

The flight termination system, for example must have it's own independent radio control. Also when the parachute is fired the motors must be stopped. There are starting to be some good options for making this all possible, for the independant radio for example;
https://parachutedrone.com/en/home/58-s ... emote.html
or
https://parachutedrone.com/en/home/53-4 ... emote.html

But stopping the motors is a bit more difficult. There is an option to put what seems like a big relay on the main battery supply, so basically disconecting the main flight batteries, with this for example;
https://parachutedrone.com/en/home/59-f ... -v121.html

I can't say that i like the idea of any of these parts on my aircraft, they seem more prone to malfunction than saving. It seems that the authorities are very concerned about"fly aways" and these are the requirements to stop them.

It has occurred to me that to stop the motors at the point of firing the parachute, rather than a relay on the main power supply, a ESC fimware with a master overide to stop the motors would be more elegant. I am going to put a post in the esc section on this.

Slightly strangely there is no requirement for an automated parachute deployment system. Other flight controllers have options to fire a parachute in certain conditions, normally once that the FC deems that the craft has tilted past 90 degrees, or has started a high speed descent.
I think that once you have gone to the point of adding all the hardware of parachutes having some automated system to fire them is probably a good idea. I reckon in many cases other than simple "flyaway's" there will not be time to push the manual release, especially if it's on a different controller!

Now to the Geo fencing.
It was a requirement of the "permit to fly" i received last year from the dgac for work in France, that i could GPS fence my flights to stop the aircraft "escaping" the permitted flight area. Luckily Menno's Hott firmware has geo fencing as an extra!(Thanks menno) However, Menno's version of geo fencing didn't work quite the way the DGAC wanted it to.
In Menno's version you can breach the geo fence limits, once you go past the limit in Mennos version you have reduced control( I think tilt angle on all axis is limited to 10 degrees). The DGAC want the geo fence to be unbreakable in any situation. Not only that but they also stipulate that there must be audible and visual alerts to the pilot that he is at the geo fence limit. Basically they want a message to appear on the video feed saying "distance limit" and they want an alarm to go off on the main controller. If you have a separate ground control telemetry system they want a message and an alarm there too!

I am not sure what appetite there is in the autoquad community right now to make all this possible, I'm not even sure if there are any other commercial users of autoquad right now, let alone in France. If i were a coder or had the skills to do it myself i would.
However, as platform, If autoquad is to have a future as a viable flight controller for commercial operations in Europe then meeting the requirements of the law should be considered the minimum that the firmware and supporting software should allow.
For the short term I am going to fly a 2kg quad which is not subject to the same rules. However if there is any one else who fly's in France or Belgium and is coming up with the same problems then it would be good to hear from you.
To Max or other coders, if there is any way we can slowly start to make the necessary changes then i would be happy to help in any way. Testing and helping with documentation is probably all i'm useful for...
Perhaps some sort of donation system could be set up for max or other coders?. I would happily donate...

Think i've said more than enough... sorry for long long post....Long live AQ and many Thanks to those who keep it going.

Tristan
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Re: Autoquad in france....

Postby JussiH » Tue Dec 20, 2016 1:57 am

Hello Tristan.

Thanks for the vote of confidence. There is still a small but dedicated team of believers that continue to develop and use AQ. Lots of nice stuff is in the pipeline and I hope we can turn up the nozzle soon and make a new "release"...as soon as the major bugs are sorted, and everyone is on the same page. ;)

Geofencing in some simple form will probably make into a release soon. It is gonna be a requirement everywhere soon I think, so it is something we have our eyes on. More elaborated versions will take more time and effort...

With a ESC32v3, and active freewheeling on, in most cases the prop will make a full stop well inside half a second (depending on prop size and inertia), when the throttle is pulled to 0, so it should be relatively simple to build a failsafe function for AQ that kills the motors, delays for X ms and then fires the parachute. Cant say I find the whole parachute idea attractive, though... :?

Adam and I have been working on a power kill switch project that is showing promise - Prototypes will be built beginning of january.

Adam has also been brewing on a "AQX" controller that we are testing Rev1 of now. The Rev2 prototypes is in the pipeline, and Rev1 is showing promise. If all goes well, I hope it can be available spring of 17.

Viacopter is a partner in the "Free The Drones - FreeD" research project headed by Southern Denmark (SDU) Drone Center. The project aims to develop a technical, analytical and behavioral case for BVLOS flight operations with small UAS.

http://www.sdu.dk/en/om_sdu/institutter ... ects/freed

The project will use AutoQuad as a platform for developing and testing control/command links as well as; supervision, failsafe, awareness, tracking and avoidance controllers that will give an extra layer of safety that is needed if small drones is to be able to perform safe and reliable BVLOS flight operations in public airspace.

There will also be developed fixed wing support for AQ as part of FreeD. The project is picking up pace and I think 2017 and 2018 is gonna be exiting. :D

Merry christmas and happy new year.

Jussi
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Re: Autoquad in france....

Postby bluuu » Thu Dec 22, 2016 5:00 pm

So ... :)

Never give up, stay tuned, work in progress and many others for everyone :)

xmas2016_m.jpg
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