Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

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Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Hector Garcia de Marina
Hi folks,

I have been flying with my own custom board for several years. Using some code from
ppz such as drivers, ground station, etc.

Now I was seriously thinking of merging my work with ppz project (such as introducing the RTOS ChibiOS) but without loosing some hardware features of my current stuff.

The two main features that I would like to conserve are, one is the floating hardware unit
(currently I am working with STM32F4 with nice RAM and Flash, writing linear algebra employing Eigen lib is really nice for my algorithms) and a separate "fail switch" board.

I do not want to boost my hardware to "production stage" as it is only a prototype, and the hardware itself is not my main goal. And of course I would like to share the experience with other people employing the same hardware (otherwise moving to a "public" platform makes no sense).

Checking the current alternatives that runs ppz, and other open source hardware. I guess

They meet my main requirements (without making extra hardware) and also include other nice minor stuff such as SD slot or a DC/DC converter. And also, in my opinion it has an affordable price.

I would like to know your opinion about some questions:

- Is this strictly legal? PPz and PX4 are different opensource projects, but I do not know whether combining hardware and software from different projects is legal. On my own there is not problem I guess, but if I would like to make it public?

- Based on your experience. Is there a lot of effort to port the firmware to a new hardware?
The good news probably are that ppz currently runs in "little brothers" of STM32F4.

- The sensors on that board are MPU-6000 (3D ACC / Gyro), L3GD20 (3D Gyro), HMC5883L (3D Mag), MS5611 (barometric pressure). I would say that ppz has already implemented drivers for all
of them.

- I currently flying with Futaba employing this receiver for interfacing my board:
If I go for a receiver with S.BUS (such as http://www.hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__27176__FrSky_TFR4_SB_3_16ch_2_4Ghz_S_BUS_Receiver_FASST_Compatible.html) , does ppz have a decoder for that protocol?

- Any other remarks? potential problems that I have not seen yet?

Thanks in advance

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Re: Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Sergey Krukowski
Hi, Hector!

Check this out:
http://paparazzi.enac.fr/wiki/Krooz
It's already working with F4 (with hard float support as well) and  
succesfully went through the flight tests.

Regards,
Sergey

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Re: Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Hector Garcia de Marina
Thank you very much Sergey, 

I have missed that this board already has the F4! So the port to that micro within ppz should be straightforward with another board.
Unfortunately, I am aiming at fixed wings. And one of my requirements is to have the radio at another place (waste of space and weight), and the board is a little bit big for my plane.
And also, sd card slot, DC/DC and other stuff that I would not like to make in separated boards.

Nevertheless, I would take a lot of code from that board in other to save time for making full compatible with ppz.

Regards,
Héctor



On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 3:06 PM, Sergey Krukowski <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi, Hector!

Check this out:
http://paparazzi.enac.fr/wiki/Krooz
It's already working with F4 (with hard float support as well) and succesfully went through the flight tests.

Regards,
Sergey

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Re: Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Hector Garcia de Marina
By the way Sergey,

Now I am realizing why I have missed that board before. Is it uploaded its firmware somewhere in the repository? I can not find any reference to it.

Regards,
Héctor


On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 3:17 PM, Hector Garcia de Marina <[hidden email]> wrote:
Thank you very much Sergey, 

I have missed that this board already has the F4! So the port to that micro within ppz should be straightforward with another board.
Unfortunately, I am aiming at fixed wings. And one of my requirements is to have the radio at another place (waste of space and weight), and the board is a little bit big for my plane.
And also, sd card slot, DC/DC and other stuff that I would not like to make in separated boards.

Nevertheless, I would take a lot of code from that board in other to save time for making full compatible with ppz.

Regards,
Héctor



On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 3:06 PM, Sergey Krukowski <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi, Hector!

Check this out:
http://paparazzi.enac.fr/wiki/Krooz
It's already working with F4 (with hard float support as well) and succesfully went through the flight tests.

Regards,
Sergey

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Re: Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Hector Garcia de Marina
Sorry for the spam,

I have just found it just in another separated repo. (I should check the wiki more often).

Regards,
Héctor


On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 3:27 PM, Hector Garcia de Marina <[hidden email]> wrote:
By the way Sergey,

Now I am realizing why I have missed that board before. Is it uploaded its firmware somewhere in the repository? I can not find any reference to it.

Regards,
Héctor


On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 3:17 PM, Hector Garcia de Marina <[hidden email]> wrote:
Thank you very much Sergey, 

I have missed that this board already has the F4! So the port to that micro within ppz should be straightforward with another board.
Unfortunately, I am aiming at fixed wings. And one of my requirements is to have the radio at another place (waste of space and weight), and the board is a little bit big for my plane.
And also, sd card slot, DC/DC and other stuff that I would not like to make in separated boards.

Nevertheless, I would take a lot of code from that board in other to save time for making full compatible with ppz.

Regards,
Héctor



On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 3:06 PM, Sergey Krukowski <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi, Hector!

Check this out:
http://paparazzi.enac.fr/wiki/Krooz
It's already working with F4 (with hard float support as well) and succesfully went through the flight tests.

Regards,
Sergey

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Re: Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Sergey Krukowski
In reply to this post by Hector Garcia de Marina
Yes, it is currently under my github, however will soon be under paparazzi  
too.
The Krooz board is 50x50 mm, so it is bigger only in one dimension, than a  
PX4 with its 50x36 mm.
The radio could be installed somwhere else, as well.
The Krooz has a DC/DC on board as well.
Except of the SD card, what stuff do you mean?

Regards,
Sergey

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Re: Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Hector Garcia de Marina
Hi Sergey,

the SD card is not really an issue, I can always hardwire one adaptor with a micro-sd inside.
I did not know that you already have a DC/DC on board. Where can I check the schematics? I have not found them in the wiki.

Does it have JTAG/SWD available?

This extra 1.4cm is just the space that I have for wires :(, but this is only a personal issue that could be got around I guess.
However, I do not like to waste space and weight. In a small plane, when the autopilot is at the nose, it makes a significant difference.

Many thanks for the info Sergey,
Héctor




On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 4:11 PM, Sergey Krukowski <[hidden email]> wrote:
Yes, it is currently under my github, however will soon be under paparazzi too.
The Krooz board is 50x50 mm, so it is bigger only in one dimension, than a PX4 with its 50x36 mm.
The radio could be installed somwhere else, as well.
The Krooz has a DC/DC on board as well.
Except of the SD card, what stuff do you mean?


Regards,
Sergey

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Re: Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Sergey Krukowski
In reply to this post by Hector Garcia de Marina
No, JTAG is not available.
I really suspect, that the two board PX4 system will be heavier than a  
Krooz, of course if there a sense at all to talk about 5 gram difference.
After a little glance on the PX4 system should say it will need some work  
to port the Paparazzi on it, even though it already works on the Krooz  
board.
I'm going to add some new info about the Krooz soon, as well as flight  
videos.

Regards,
Sergey

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Re: Thinking of moving ppz to PX4FMU

Hector Garcia de Marina

On Sat, Feb 16, 2013 at 5:25 PM, Sergey Krukowski <[hidden email]> wrote:
No, JTAG is not available.

mm how do you debug your firmware then? do you have another board for prototyping?

 
I really suspect, that the two board PX4 system will be heavier than a Krooz, of course if there a sense at all to talk about 5 gram difference.

I agree. Indeed the total difference should not be so big. It is just to test the different sizes and weights for your vehicle. But I would say that there is not
so much difference between the two systems regarding this aspect.

 
After a little glance on the PX4 system should say it will need some work to port the Paparazzi on it, even though it already works on the Krooz board.
I'm going to add some new info about the Krooz soon, as well as flight videos.


Nice too hear about that. As you have already experience of porting the full project to a new hardware, do you mind to explain where and what would be this "some work"?

Thanks a lot Sergey.
Héctor

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