Solo Android app update: rewind, pano, zipline and more

When we released a bunch of new smart shots for Solo on iOS in June, we promised that they would be coming to Android, too. I’m please to report that the new Android app is now out


New in 2.4.0:
– Pano
– Zipline
– Return to me
– Rewind options
– Revised orbit to allow adjustment of ROI after it has been set
– Removes dependency on 3DR Services
Requires Solo firmware 2.4.1 or newer
– MPCC issues
– Turned off local device recording by default, which was causing crash
– Fixed bug in weather information display

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UgCS 2.9 Update 1 Is Now Live

We’re proud and very excited to announce the release of the newest version of UgCS ground station software for drones – UgCS 2.9 Update 1. We’ve put in a lot of work to make sure this is the most polished version of UgCS ever. Along with changes in UgCS desktop version, the users of “UgCS for DJI” mobile app will also notice some useful improvements.

Here are some of the changes in UgCS desktop version:

  • User-specified speed between waypoints is now treated as the speed along the 3D vector between two waypoints. This change leads to the drone flying closer to the specified flight trajectory and thus – higher flight precision.
  • For Pixhawk / APM autopilots take-off point altitude is now set automatically
  • Previously if the vehicle speed in the mission exceeded the allowed max speed in the vehicle profile, the mission would not calculate. Now, in this case, the mission is calculated with the maximum vertical / horizontal speed components set in the vehicle profile and the user gets a warning message.
  • Support for Ubuntu 16.04 LTS has been added!
  • Camera trigger now works correctly in Photogrammetry missions with DJI A2
  • Speed vector in Telemetry window is now proportional on smaller screens
  • Area scan calculation above complex terrain profile has been optimized
  • Yaw action has been removed from DJI Wookong-M waypoint actions
  • “Continue” command has been disabled while in “Click & Go” mode for Wookong-M, Naza-M V2 and Phantom 2
  • Fixed “Camera Trigger” button and “Camera trigger by time” action not working in some cases
  • “No actions in last point” flag behavior has been fixed, no additional trigger actions are generated

“UgCS for DJI” Android app has been updated to work with the latest version of UgCS. Some of the new features of the mobile app include:

  • Using Adaptive turn type the maximum corner radius can be adjusted in the app under “Drone Specific Settings”
  • Minimum safe altitude parameter has been added to applications preferences to prevent the drone from flying straight to the target waypoint from the ground. Now the drone climbs to safe altitude before flying to the first waypoint
  • Support for Land waypoint has been added
  • Notifications have been made more user friendly


Get UgCS 2.9 Update 1 now at


Safe flights,
UgCS Team

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How to connect Precis-BX305 to CORS network with external Bluetooth module and mobile phone

The CORS is an appealing way to do RTK due to its convenience and large coverage area. While Precis-BX305 currently does not support build-in NTRIP client feature, there is an alternative way to connect CORS network by employing external Bluetooth module and a cellphone. Check it out.

Any comments? Let us know.

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PrecisionHawk gets first FAA waiver to fly beyond visual line of sight using LATAS system

From PrecisionHawk’s post on its milestone FAA approval to fly beyond visual line of sight, in which they describe their interesting LATAS system:

To further mitigate risk, PrecisionHawk uses an airspace display technology called LATAS to help track the aircraft and avoid potential hazards such as trees, powerlines or manned aircraft. While it is not a required to receive an EVLOS waiver, LATAS plays a key role in PrecisionHawk’s own operations. The LATAS web application is a free tool available on and provides an extra layer of safety and protection for any operator flying under Part 107.

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New minidrones from Parrot: A VTOL and a new quad with powered accessories

Parrot launched some fun new mini drones this morning that are about to make your drone educational programs even more awesome, particularly access to the Parrot SDK for app development.  Here is a nice writeup in TechCrunch and more details on the Parrot webpage.

Introducing ‘Swing’,  a new vertical takeoff, transitional vehicle. This thing is really fast and comes with a nice new bluetooth controller that makes piloting mini drones even easier.  Swing is definitely unique!

‘Mambo’ is an upgraded quad with power out of the Lego-style bricks to run accessories, including a little cannon for light plastic pellets and a claw for picking up and dropping things.  For you DIY folks, the interesting thing here is that power is available to solder on other accessories (think Raspberry Pi, LEDs, etc…).  

For the educators out there, when combined with the Tickle app for programming, this should make your drone classes even more interesting (e.g. whichever team drops the pin the closest to the target on an autonomous mission through an classroom obstacle course wins).

So while you are studying for your Part 107 exam, lets remember to have a little fun! 

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The world's first commercial drone with collision avoidance LiDAR

SUAS News posted an article today about the Kespry Drone 2.0, a commercial drone that is advertised as requiring minimal human input during a mission. It has a forward looking LiDAR sensor specifically for obstacle sensing and collision avoidance. This might be that first commercially available drone to have LiDAR as standard equipment.

Looking at their website, I see that Kespry is offering cloud services to go with their new drone. This fits nicely into the business model that CA has suggested is essential for the long term sustainability of a modern drone company. Lasers and cloud services, I wish I’d thought of that! 

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Zubax Babel – an advanced USB-CAN and UART-CAN adapter

Hi everyone,

We’re announcing Zubax Babel – an advanced USB-CAN and UART-CAN adapter designed for use with UAVCAN and other CAN bus protocols. It can be used either as a complete standalone tool, as a development platform for UAVCAN-centered applications, or as an OEM component in larger systems.

The adapter has a number of important features that are rarely seen in competing designs:

  • Low latency – cumulative latency between the USB CDC ACM interface on the host system and the CAN bus is under 1 millisecond.
  • High throughput – the device handles over 5000 frames per second in either direction continuously.
  • Standard DroneCode connectors.
  • Proper prioritization of outgoing CAN frames. The adapter schedules outgoing frames properly, avoiding inner priority inversion in the transmission queue.
  • Large RX buffer allows the device to handle short-term traffic bursts without frame losses when interfaced via low-speed UART.
  • Software-controlled 120 Ohm termination resistor.
  • The CAN bus can be powered from USB via a software-controlled power switch. This enables, among other things, easy testing and configuration of UAVCAN-interfaced peripherals.
  • Quasi-standard SLCAN interface (a.k.a. LAWICEL) to the host system makes the adapter compatible with a variety of software products available on the market.
  • No drivers needed for Windows 10+, OSX, Linux.

Zubax Babel is primarily intended for UAVCAN applications, although other CAN bus protocols are supported equally well. We recommend the UAVCAN GUI Tool for use with Zubax Babel; however, there is a wide selection of software products that can talk with SLCAN adapters and therefore are compatible with Zubax Babel too.

UAVCAN GUI Tool is a cross-platform open source (sources here) application for UAVCAN bus management and diagnostics. It runs on Windows, OSX, and Linux; read the installation instructions here.

We are currently preparing a tutorial that will show how to develop a simple servo controller interfaced via UAVCAN using Zubax Babel. Stay tuned!


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Pi0Plane: A $150 smart fixed wing drone with the Pi Zero

Hi everyone!

We have published a new tutorial in hackster !

This tutorial demonstrates how to build a low cost Linux drone with the Raspberry Pi Zero and the PXFmini autopilot.

The PXFmini is totally compatible with the Raspberry Pi Zero, and it provides different kind of sensors which allow, for example, autonomous missions. The drone uses a real-time capable Linux kernel, a Debian-based file system and Dronecode’s APM flight stack compiled for the PXFmini autopilot board. All these components have been put together by Erle Robotics in their OS image for the PXFmini.

All the components of the Pi0Plane can be seen in the image below. All the assembly of each component can be found in the tutorial.


Hope you like it, and feel free to ask!

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Insitu's Inexa Control Released August 29th!

Coinciding with FAA’s Part 107 going into effect we at insitu are releasing Inexa Control, our ground control station software with the Unmanned Vehicle Plugin for ArduCopter which enables control of all Arducopter / APM:Copter based quadcopters.  This is very exciting for us at Insitu bringing professional aviation tools to all of you in the DIYDrones community.

You can buy Inexa Control here:

In the next few weeks I’ll be posting various videos and documentation on Inexa Control covering the basics of Inexa Control, using simulation mode with the Augmented Video Overly System, and using Inexa Control with quads using Arducopter / APM:Copter.

That’s all for now!

May your GPS always synchronize with your barometer

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