Autonomus drones and Missionplanner

Hey! I am new to mission planner and drones. I am building a quadcopter which will fly a pre-planned mission using mission planner.

I have the following questions in my mind:

  1. Can we control the quad without an RC transmitter?
  2. If we aren’t using an RC transmitter to control the quad then how can we calibrate it?
  3. how can i establish a communication channel between the ground station (i.e. my laptop) and the quad-copter so that all the flight instructions are sent by the mission planner (From my research I have come across 3DR telemetry radios to achieve this)

Flying no transmitter is not recommended or a safe way to fly even for fully autonomous missions.
3dr radios work but spend the extra $20 or so to get name brands ( I like holybro).
There are lots of cheap radios that work but cause other interference issues.

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the thing is that i want to create a swarm of drones (maybe just 2; one follower and one leader for starters) and for that i can’t spend money on an RC transmitter for every drone. Is there any bypass to this problem?

Also, if I do use an RC controller then will the quad have 2 receiver modules? i.e. 1 for the RC transmitter and the other for the 3dr?

Yes 2 receivers. I think you can do a swarm from what I have read. I have no idea how that works.
It could be as simple mission planning where each drone has a slightly different mission. I am literally just guessing
That said my advice to you as being new to ardupilot would be get your swarm flying with a TX then learn this more advanced swarm feature.
Good luck

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