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Sm4rt Bird. Review from 4810. Designing a quad rotor copter to aid in USAR missions. Implementing an autonomous and manual mode of operation. Autonomous flight will allow the copter to follow a target without any user commands having to be entered. Changes Made from PDR:.

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Sm4rt bird

Sm4rt Bird

Review from 4810

Review from 4810

  • Designing a quad rotor copter to aid in USAR missions.

  • Implementing an autonomous and manual mode of operation.

  • Autonomous flight will allow the copter to follow a target without any user commands having to be entered.

Changes made from pdr

Changes Made from PDR:

  • Purchasing our own flight controller.

  • Increasing autonomous capabilities of device.

  • No longer using MATLAB for GUI/Computer Vision.

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  • A power harness must be designed and fabricated or purchased

  • The harness will hold the ESCs at the full battery voltage

  • The harness must be able to handle the current

  • The harness must avoid being too bulky

Power harness

Power Harness



Wire gauge

Wire Gauge

  • Using the Preeceequation for the ampacity of a copper wire , , one can estimate the necessary diameter given a certain current

  • is the fusing current for the wire

  • is a constant that is specific to different materials

  • is the diameter of the wire

  • Because of the relationship between diameter and fusing current, using one thicker wire versus 4 thinner wires can reduce weight.

Wire gauge1

Wire Gauge

- Our copter will use 30 Amp ESCs, so the gauge of the cross-wires will be determined using 60 Amps.

  • Using the equation from earlier, and a chart of American Wire Gauge diameters, the cross wires should be between .19 and .20

  • For even more leeway we will use .18

  • Using the same method and KCL it was determined that the main wires before the X should be .12



  • 3.5 mm Bullet style connectors

  • EC5 Connector

Other power considerations

Other Power Considerations

  • The ESCs are held at the batteries full voltage (14.8V)

  • The ESCs BECs (Battery Eliminator Circuit) power the flight controller (5V)

  • The ESCs also limit the power delivered to each motor

  • The ESCs are rated at 30A, which exceeds the maximum current draw of the motors which is 18A

Power considerations

Power Considerations

  • Since most of the components are held at a constant DC voltage, the available current from the battery needs to be considered

  • Since the ESCs (x4) can draw up to 30A, the battery will need to be able to supply 120A

  • Maximum discharge is determined by =

  • Were C is known as the discharge rate

  • For our application we are using a 5000mAh battery with a discharge rate of 25C

  • Our maximum discharge would be 125A

Sm4rt bird

Flight Controller

  • Features

  • Supports MegaPirateNG and MultiWiifirmware

  • Up to 8 motor outputs

  • 4 Serial ports for debug/Bluetooth/GPS

  • 8 Analog output for external devices

  • I2C port for extended device

  • MPU6050 6-axis gyro/accel

  • HMC5883L 3-axis magnetometer

  • MS5611-01BA01 high precision altimeter

  • On board logic level converter

CRIUS AIOP v2.0 (atmega 2560)

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Flight Controller

From PDR

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Flight Controller

New and optimized design

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Flight Controller

  • Features

  • MSP430F249 microcontroller

  • 12V, 5V, 3.3V voltage regulators

  • 4 onboard programmable LEDs

  • 40+ General Purpose I/O pins

  • 16Mhz crystal oscillator

  • 2 UART ports

  • 60KB flash memory

  • 2KB RAM

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Flight Controller

  • What has been done:

  • Test of all the parts on the board

  • Establish PC to microcontroller communication

  • Generation of PWM for motor control

  • What needs to be done:

  • Acquire readings from sensors

  • Test wireless communication

  • Implement control algorithm

Computer vision

Computer Vision



Python2.7.5 with Spyder IDE

OpenCV 2.4.2 Image Processing Library from Intel

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  • Hue, Saturation, Value

  • Used instead of RGB because it is the “pure” color, effected very little by brightness or lighting levels.

  • Often used in CV for feature detection or image segmentation.



Read in image from camera

Convert image from RGB to HSV

Filter HSV image properties to only show objects in image with certain properties



  • Objective: Detect a pink highlighter from three different color highlighters

  • Using the aforementioned approach, the following results were obtained.

Continuing work

Continuing Work

  • From the filtered HSV image, a shape of a certain color must now be detected. Preferably circle.

  • The circles parameters can be used to measure distance and relation in space to quadcopter.

  • Adjust movements accordingly based on size and location of circle in radius to maintain target at desired distance from robot.

Gantt chart

Gantt Chart

We are here

Plan now milestone 2

Plan: Now-Milestone 2

  • When parts arrive, Tony and Gilles will begin construction of device.

  • During construction, John and Justin will continue working on Computer Vision, GUI, and software integration.

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