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MDK

Getting Started in UAV's

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I've been flying r/c for several years now, and I want to make a plane fly somewhat autonomously. My goal is to have a human controlled takeoff, and then have the plane fly autonomously through a GPS waypoint course, after which it will return for me to land it. I've never worked with this sort of thing before (except for the traditional r/c stuff), so all of the electronics issues are new to me, leaving me with a few questions:

How could I set up the GPS system and program waypoints for the plane to fly to, and how could I integrate the GPS receiver/controller into the airplane to control it?

What GPS components would be required, and about how much would it cost to do something like this?

What would I need in the way of ground equipment to control the whole GPS system?

What options are available for monitoring the aircraft's performance?

Would it be necessary to have an onboard video camera, and if so what would an entry level system tend to cost?

Of all my questions above, the GPS is the biggest. I think I could work through a video system but I have no idea how I would convert my desired waypoints into a final product of the plane actually going there. I know there is a lot of technical experience and brilliance out there, and I would appreciate any advice you might be able to offer.

Best Regards,

MDK

Edited by MDK

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For GPS waypoint navigation you can use something like the home brew RCAP or the commercial Micropilot products. If you Google those you will come up with lots of info.

The RCAP was created by a member of the forum that has sort of disappeared. But, his basic work has appeared in many new DiY hobbyist born projects. The latest is: http://alai.h3m.com/~s0350672/catalogo/pro...e20b137e6de1af5

The micropilot UAV products are found here: http://www.micropilot.com/

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