In my first post last year I stated that my New Years resolution was to build more stuff, the Jukebox lights are wired up and that project is more or less done.  One of my other ambitions mentioned was to design and build a UAV.

Now, I’m a Microsoft guy.  It’s what I know and do for a living so I know thier developer stack pretty well so upon learning of the Netduino a plan came together and this years project was born!  So far I’ve the Netduino, a Razor 9 DOF sensor board and a plan!  I’ve been following other similar projects such as Aeroquad and I plan to blog the project as I go.

The plan is currently fluid, I’ve not built anything like this before though have flown model helicopters before.  I’ve a few specifications that the copter will be built around;

  1. Autonomy – With the sensors onboard, the IMU and GPS, it will need to be able to fly a set path.
  2. Payload – Along with flying a path the copter will have a camera or two to capture aerial photographs.  Ideally from multiple angles to have some fun with Photosynth
  3. Telemetry – The copter will have a live telemetry link back to a PC and on board storage for later review of flight data.  Ideally a live video feed too which will be the stretch goal.
  4. Easy Mode – As with the Aeroquad I’d like my copter to have stable and agile settings, I wan’t my friends to be able to fly this easily with minimal practice.

I’ve set myself quite a challenge though as with all my projects it should be a hell of a lot of fun and quite a challenge.  Stay tuned for more…