Are you one of those people who are interested in building a drone? If so, welcome to my Drone Project!
I'll teach you how to make your own removable and personalized drone which you're going to control your drone by using and Android Phone.
For this project, we're going to use Arduino, AppInventor and SolidWorks or SketchUp.
There are four essential parts to consider:
1 - The Chassis
1.1 - The Central part
1.2 - The Legs
1.3 - The Linkers
2 - The Hardware
3 - The Arduino program
4 - The App
Let's get started!
And remember, in case you have doubts, do not hesitate to contact me!
Step 1: What to Use?
Let's see what we are going to use for our project:
1 - Software:
1.1 - Arduino program.
1.2 - SolidWorks.
I've chosen this program because I think it's really good, but you can use the program you want.
1.3 - AppInventor.
This program allows us to create an App to control our drone.
2 - Hardware:
2.1 - Arduino 101.
The reason why we're using arduino Board is quite important. This new board includes the accelerometer and the bluetooth inside. In addition to that, It's cheaper than buying an Arduino UNO and the two components mentioned above separately. Let's not forget that Arduino 101 is going to be the brain of the drone.
2.2 - The Accelerometer.
As mentioned before, if you buy Arduino 101 you'll have the accelerometer inside. Let me remind you that the accelerometer is the one that calibrate and stabilize our drone to avoid possible accidents.
2.3 - The Bluetooth.
As the accelerometer, it's include into the Arduino 101 Board. The Bluetooth will allow us to communicate the Arduino with the Mobile App.
2.4 - The Motors.
We are going to buil a quadcopter so we need 4 motors. As we are doing our drone with a 3D printer, it'll be very light so we don't need a very powerful motors. In my case, I've chosen "Turnigy D2830-11 1000kv Brushless". It has the right potential and it's not expensive at all.
2.5 - The ESC's.
The ESC's are the Electronic Speed Controllers. The are who managed the quantiti of energy that arrives to the motors. In my case I've selected "Turnigy Multistar 20A 2V" because they're ideal for our motors.
2.6 - The Battery.
This component will feed our Hardware with energy. The battery has to be LiPo. "AeroEnergy 1200mAh LiPo".has the necessary potential to feed the motors and the Arduino so it's appropiate.
2.7 - The Propellers.
The propellers are coupled to the motors so, as they spin, the drone will ascends. Let me remind you that the size of it has to be proportional to the size of the drone.
2.8 - Cables.
A big number of cables are required for our construction.
Step 2: The Chassis
Now we're going to start doing the chassis of the drone. As I said before, we're going to need a removable, light and useful chasis. Let's start by doing the central part.
Step 3: The Central Part
The central part of the drone has should be the size of Arduino 101. To work on this part, we need simple gadgets to link the legs. Apart from that, let's not forget aesthetics is important, too.
I decided to build an octahedron. See the image attached.
- There are two trapezoid holes in the base of the piece. The cables are passing through these holes. Doing so, we'll reach better aesthetics.
- We can also see some high points at the base to couple the Arduino Board.
- On the edges of the piece que have some rectangular holes. The legs need to be fixed to these holes. (We'll see it later)
Step 4: The Legs
The drone legs of the drone are going to hold the motors and the ESC's. That's why we need light, esthetical and coupeable legs for it.
Have a look at the image and see the result.
- The circular part is where the motors are held. It has a hole at the base where the cables pass trought.
- At the other extreme of the leg, we have a high point which is used to join the central part. It looks like a puzzle. (We will see it at the end)
- There is also a vertical fragment that holds the central part into the air to avoid the contact with the floor. It also evades psossible accidents.
- The ESC's will be under the leg, where we can't see it. This will improve our estethic.
Step 5: The Linkers
Now that we have the central part designated and the four legs of the drone ready, we can connect each fragment. But, be careful, you need to make sure these legs won't separate from the central part. That's why the four linkers are required.
These linkers, as you can see in the image, have a "T" shape which helps to prevent from possible accidents.
Step 6: The Final Chassis
Now we only have to build the chassis. As I said, it's like a puzzle, not difficult at all. See the images.
Step 7: The Hardware
The chassis is built so let's design the hardware.
First, locate Arduino board into the central part. Then, set the four motors into the circular parts of the legs. Once we have this, we're going to link the motors with the Arduino Board by using the ESC's. Finally, we are going to connect the battery.
We're going to connect each motor cable with the ESC cables. Two motors are going to be connected with the same colors, and the others to are going to be connected in the reverse way (As you can see in the photo).
Then, we need to tie the red ESC's cables to the battery. Afterwards, the black cables should hoin the Ground Pin (GND) to Arduino. Finally, the last cable of the ESC is going to be connected to the pins number 3, 5, 6 and 9.t
Don't forget to connect the battery to the Arduino.
That's all that we have to do with the hardware part. Easy, isn't it?
Step 8: The Arduino Program
I've divided the Software into 3 parts:
- The motors
- The accelerometer
- The Bluetooth connection
Here is the programe!
Step 9: The App
The App has been created using AppInventor. The connection between the arduino antd the App has been designed following the ASCII code (you can see it in the photo). That's because we're using a BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy). I hope you like my App...
Here you have it!
Step 10: You've Done It by Your Own
The total cost of the drone is approximately 150€.
Thank you for visiting my blog and I hope you'll done some improves on my project!
Participated in the
Microcontroller Contest 2017