Let's Make Robots!

Blade MCX2 (almost) Autonomous Flight

We equipped a stock Blade helicopter with infrared markers and tracked its position and orientation using a Vicon Bonita camera system. A Kalman filter gives us a full state estimate.

Then we hacked the remote and controlled the helicopter via computer.
This can be done with many Blade helicopters (all that have DSM2 compatible remote controls).

More sophisticated controls are to be implemented.

Blade MCX2 with infrared markers.


Vicon Bonita Camera Setup


Original remote control.




A preliminary version of the report can be found at http://people.ee.ethz.ch/~jrichner/main.pdf

GTK application to control any Blade helicopter by joystick, connecting the transmitter of the remote control to the computer via USB-to-Serial cable as described in the report: http://people.ee.ethz.ch/~jrichner/mcx2serial.zip

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Very cool, I was wondering if MATLAB or Python were used, I'm glad to see you're using both (I love scripting languages).  I'm very interested to see your project report, what University/Institution are you at?

awesome copter indeed!

Looked at that platform for an autonomous robot since my brother had one but decided that it was too small.

I wanted to do that with my hexacopter, but this vicon system costs an arm and a leg ! :)