Member Since: April 11, 2006

Country: United States

  • Robomaniac, The vertical GPS mounting strategy worked better than I thought it would. I thought that changing from horizontal mounting of the EM506 to vertical mounting would cause the number of satellites in view to drop by 4 or 5, but it only dropped by 1 or 2. So far I have made about a dozen inverted flights with the vertical mounting with consistent, reliable results. Best regards, Bill

  • Regarding PICKit3/2, UDB5 can be programmed with PICKit2, but it is not easy. I recommend PICKit3.

    Regarding time required to configure the board, I suggest you post your question to the UDB community and get a range of answers from UDB users. The link is in the list of documents above, click on “MatrixPilot Firmware Home”.

    Best regards, Bill Premerlani

  • UDB users: The EM-406 GPS has reached its end of life, and is no longer available. As “MagicRub” mentioned, the EM-506 is now available from SparkFun. I have tested it, it is a direct replacement for the EM-406 for use with UDB and MatrixPilot. Best regards, Bill Premerlani

  • @member427317

    It has been my goal to use algorithmic innovations to squeeze as much performance as possible from minimum hardware, to come up with an inexpensive hardware platform that will satisfy most of the users, and support optional sensors such as magnetometer, pitot and barometer for other users.

    For fixed wing, the MartrixPilot firmware actually works better without a magnetometer than with one. For multicopter, a magnetometer is necessary, it can be mounted directly to the board.

    For more information on the algorithmic innovations in the firmware take a look at the following collection of discussions:

    Also, take a look at the following discussion thread on diydrones:

    Best regards, Bill Premerlani

  • Everyone: UDB4 has been discontinued, the gyros that it uses are no longer available. UDB5 is just around the corner. Basically, it will be UDB4, except with the MPU6000 gyro/accelerometer chip. SparkFun is in the process of designing the hardware. The UDB software team has tested the MPU6000 with a breakout board connected to a UDB4, and is in the process of preparing the UDB5 software, so it will be ready when the UDB5 goes into production. Best regards, Bill Premerlani

  • Hi Francis, I am not sure if anyone has used this board with Matlab/Simulink or not. However, I am optimistic that it is possible, because the MPLAB IDE used to program the UDB has an “Matlab/Simulink” entry under the Tools tab. If you already have Matlab/Simulink (I do not), you could find out more before you buy the board, because you can run the UDB4 software in simulate mode without actually having the board. In any case, I suggest you repost your question to the UDB users’s group, and take a look at the UDB website. Best regards, Bill Premerlani

  • Gideon, Some folks at MIT used the UDB4 on variable pitch quads. They wrote their own software. There was a posting by Chris Anderson on diydrones.

    Presently, Mark Whitehorn is working on open source controls for quads. Here is a discussion. The software is under development, but if you want to try it out, it is available in the software repository of the MatrixPilot website.

    Best regards, Bill Premerlani

  • Hi member 171193,
    Try typing this into your browser:
    Best regards,

  • Hi Mike,
    The straightness of the lines is a function of the weather, the airframe, and the controls. In calm air, the lines are much straighter. What was happening in the flights that you are looking at is that the wind speed and direction was highly variable with location, and the plane that I was using was flying slow, so it was easily knocked off course. Some folks flying faster planes get much straighter lines. Finally, we are still working on the controls to improve the straightness.
    You might be interested to know that the firmware includes an option to point a camera at a desired location, so it would not be too difficult to arrange for the camera view to sweep along a perfectly straight line.
    Best regards,

  • You might also be interested in reading about the flights that Rick Kuebler has made with his FunJet flying at 150 miles per hour, including a fully autonomous flight:

No public wish lists :(