AR.Drone connected via 3G

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by pawelsky » 01 May 2013, 14:55

OK, time for some update and conclusions here.

I was not able to find an operator offering 3G service with public IP in a reasonable price (the one that could offer that required 1 year contract).

Anyway I did some more flight tests (3 batteries flown) with the Drone connected to a local WiFi hotspot accessed from 3G network (which is pretty much the same in terms of connection, just reversed) and I must admit I'm pretty impressed.

The lag is really minimal - you quickly learn to react a bit earlier than normally. The video (if kept at a reasonable res) is smooth and also with minimal lag. ARDrone Flight app connects to the drone very quickly (under 2 sec). I did have occasional hiccups (mainly in video, but also once or twice on control), so I would recommend to keep the hover lock on - the drone will stabilize itself in case of trouble.

The conclusion from these tests is that the drone is perfectly flyable over the 3G network and I would recommend everyone who has the 3G service with public address to give it a try. Even if you don't have a public IP try it by connecting to the local WiFi network, and access it from your mobile (and e.g. impress your friends by flying your drone in their garden, controlling it from some distant location in the world)

Here is a video recorded locally on the Android device. Nothing big - just an illustration of what can be expected.


Direct link: http://www.youtube.com/v/CHCVKb8plcQ
Last edited by pawelsky on 01 May 2013, 15:55, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by ScubaSteve » 01 May 2013, 14:59

That would be pretty novel for someone to fly it from cross country border
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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by garrock » 01 May 2013, 15:09

pawelsky wrote:OK, time for some update and conclusions here.

The conclusion from these tests is that the drone is perfectly flyable over the 3G network

I would recommend to keep the hover lock on - the drone will stabilize itself in case of trouble.

... controlling it from some distant location in the world
That is great news !

A form of Tele-Robotics.

I promised two physically challenged boys last year that they will someday do just that... fly it from some distant location.

This is just a small sample of what networked enabled flying machines using ubiquitous ground control technology can do. The best is yet to come.

Excellent work pawelsky !
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pawelsky
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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by pawelsky » 01 May 2013, 15:59

garrock wrote:I promised two physically challenged boys last year that they will someday do just that... fly it from some distant location.
I guess you can give it a try now. AR Drone Flight has even an option now to configure Drone to connect to an existing WiFi network. All you have to do is to disable the WEP/WPA security, make sure 555x ports are redirected to Drone on the router (I redirect whole 5000-6000 range as I never remember all the ports used by Drone) and set the external IP of your router in the ARD Flight app as Drone's address.

P.S. I've added a short video to my previous post

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by pbody2013 » 01 May 2013, 16:20

Great work fellas!!
"It seems to be flying alright, but it's making a funny noise"

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by remoh » 02 May 2013, 09:43

Hi pawelsky,

great work as always (;
I've also done some tests with 3G last year, but didn't continue testing, because the 3G signal strength is very low at my location.
Could you please post your signal strength (I'm quite sure your router or USB modem can show this value)?
My signal strength was about 81 dbm (not bad, but too slow for real-time controlling a robot or drone).

It's a pity that the LTE cellular network expansion takes so long.

Thanks in advance,
Fabian

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by pawelsky » 02 May 2013, 11:44

remoh wrote:Could you please post your signal strength (I'm quite sure your router or USB modem can show this value)?
My signal strength was about 81 dbm (not bad, but too slow for real-time controlling a robot or drone).
The signal I'm having is not particularly strong (-91dBm)

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by Chanman » 04 May 2013, 21:51

One issue that might be an obstacle (though not a technical one) is the amount of data used by the drone during flight. How many MB (or even GB) of data can we expect would be consumed by a standard 15 minute flight?

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by pawelsky » 04 May 2013, 22:23

Chanman wrote:One issue that might be an obstacle (though not a technical one) is the amount of data used by the drone during flight. How many MB (or even GB) of data can we expect would be consumed by a standard 15 minute flight?
Assuming some reasonable video bitrate (let's say 1Mbps max) you'll have

15 * 60 * 1 = 900Mb

divide that by 8 to go from bits to bytes

900 / 8 = 112,5 MB

add some for navdata and control commands and you'll have roughly 115MB per flight.

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by SkySlayer » 05 May 2013, 20:01

You could always hack into the system, or change a few things around if you have the app "drone control"( much more user control than other flight apps and rather cheap). I ,However, wont be able to do what you are trying because I live in one of the most random places on earth and 3G is the newest thing here and does not work as of yet because we do not have the tech to use its full capabilities, also my internet speed is 0.0515 Mega Bytes per second(51.5 Kilo Bytes if you'd prefer) and it takes me ages to do a google search so none of this for me. oh ya, I live in Swaziland( Land of the Swazi's).
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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by SkySlayer » 05 May 2013, 20:05

:|
Last edited by SkySlayer on 08 May 2013, 21:28, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by pawelsky » 05 May 2013, 20:34

SkySlayer wrote:Did I forget to mention that because of this country and its strange rules I may fly my drone in very few places or they will knock it down with a rock or the weapons they borrowed from South Africa. and yes they will probably throw the weapons at the drone because they don't now how to use them. Also, a few weeks ago, some guy got arrested for flying his drone over the kings house and you will find this on the internet.
Wow, that is an interesting place to fly the Drone! You need to share some footage or at least pictures (assuming you'll be patient enough to upload it). The furthest south I've been in Africa was Tanzania.

Anyway sooner or later the internet speed there will increase. It is inevitable.

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by SkySlayer » 08 May 2013, 21:28

I have on youtube
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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by dmxoneIuv » 31 May 2013, 09:13

pawelsky wrote:
Wow, that is an interesting place to fly the Drone! You need to share some footage or at least pictures (assuming you'll be patient enough to upload it). The furthest south I've been in Africa was Tanzania.

Anyway sooner or later the internet speed there will increase. It is inevitable.
Whoa! I was born in Tanzania. Only 6 when I moved to the states but I'd love to see the footage and share it with my dad if you could post it please.

thanks

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Re: AR.Drone connected via 3G

Post by pawelsky » 31 May 2013, 23:30

dmxoneIuv wrote:Whoa! I was born in Tanzania. Only 6 when I moved to the states but I'd love to see the footage and share it with my dad if you could post it please.
Unfortunately I did not fly the Drone there, was there on vacation.

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