Ardupilot Autonomous Aerobatics Update

We are at the developer conference 2023 - and presented our latest work on the autonomous aerobatics project - including dual (formation) autonomous aerobatics. For those interested, our presentation slides are here.

Lots of exciting additions to the aerobatics code - full trajectory following using quaternion navigation (no more gimbal lock), super simple maneuver definitions, and even simpler schedule assembly.

And of course the addition of dual formation aerobatics. Here we used two Yak 55 aircraft. Using a mesh network we pass progress along our defined path and in this way both aircraft remain in sync during the flight.

Here is a video of one of the first dual formation flights and a dual formation flight displayed in the plotter.

And, for the first time, dual autonomous aerobatics @ night!

For those interested the aerobatics presentation starts @ 3:07:25


Pretty interesting stuff.

I am a tree-dodging freestyle/racing quad pilot who became friends with a couple of scale flyers and since then I added two planes to the stable.

Those scale flyers also fly competition, and I think I can use the autonomous aerobatics well to help them with training. Set up a course, have them play a game of follow-the-leader.

Watching 100 scale flights is a great way of learning how the schedule should look from the ground… you can of course change the optional maneuvers to suit your own models… The example scale schedule on github is a great place to start!

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WOW! That is the COOLEST thing I have ever seen in this hobby! Well done.


The latest video demo is up

(it could be a repost of the one linked in the opening post)
and I strongly believe this would be a great demo at the next Avalon Airshow


That looks amazing :slight_smile:

any special sauce with the “dicrecional” gps antennas to maintain satelite lock inverted?

The aerobatics code works well with a ‘standard’ M8N - ardupilot is good at filing in the gaps :_)

Eventually the L5 GPS’s may give an even better result.

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