Connecting my APM2.8 to ROS


Hello all, please don’t tell me to get a board that it is supported and new because the apm2.8 is not mine and I’m applying a university project. :stuck_out_tongue:
Can someone please give a brief explanation about the steps to connect the quadcopter to ROS? What additional hardware do we need? Thanks a lot.

You’ll need a companion computer like a Raspberry Pi, Nvidia SBC, or Intel Edison. And if that hardware is within your budget, it’s unfathomable that you would try connecting it to such an old, inferior, and unsupported autopilot when H743 based autopilots that support the latest firmware can be obtained for very reasonable cost.

1 Like

Well your advice for me for buying the newest version of boards is appreciated but I’m very sure this is impossible now. I’m just seeking help from you guys since I’m unable to get support from any where else.

I got a raspberry Pi 3 in my hands and ready for this job. How I will be able to send ROS commands to the drone if the raspberry pi board is also mounted on the drone. I mean that when I connect my laptop to the APM2.8, there is a cable connecting the 2 devices (the PC and the APM2.8) so sending commands and data is easy this way. But wirelessly, how may I send ROS commands to the drone?

I really appreciate you helping me!

Thanks a lot.

Seeking help for an outdated and unsupported hardware is a lost of time for you and for our support members,.

Get an inexpensive supported flight controller and you will soon have your project working


All you need is in the link I posted in the other thread with the same question. Or simply Google “Arducopter ROS”.

There are a few options available. The easiest would be a wifi connection. The RPi 3 has a wifi module and your laptop most likely has one, too. The range will be limited though. You can get better wifi range with high quality external usb adapters, but without a lot of effort, it will still be limited to a hundred, maybe two hundred meters. This is with european/german regulations in mind. If you are allowed to use high power settings and unregulated 5GHz in your country, you might get more range.
The other option would be serial telemetry radios. You can use them to work with a serial terminal on the RPi. They will have more range, but the connection is slow(er).
The best you can get are RFD900/868 modules.
This will be valid for any flight controller.

1 Like

Another option is to use a 3G/4G USB wireless broadband dongle.
In that way it can be used anywhere where mobile phone reception is available.

  • But needless to say needs a RPi or similar to support this.
1 Like

@Karl_Schoelpple @count74
Thanks for the reply. That was more than enough!

Which version of ROS best compatible to work with APM 2.8 and Rpi3B? I think it is Indigo but not sure. And is there older versions for MAVROS to consider while downlaoding?