Welcome To DroneVibes

DroneVibes is a COMMUNITY of drones enthusiasts. We are experts at drones for all professional and consumer applications. We welcome you to register and join the conversation.

Any DJI Ground Station experts?

Discussion in 'DJI A2 & WKM flight control systems' started by hover.ch, Jan 27, 2013.

  1. hover.ch

    hover.ch Member

    147
    0
    0
    Jan 27, 2013
    Switzerland
    Posted by hover.ch, Jan 27, 2013 #1
    I'm using DJI's Ground Station software for aerial imaging with my AD-8 octocopter / Wookong-M flight control system.

    Are there any DJI Ground Station experts out there?
    There are quite some questions I would like to discuss.

    Thank you for dropping a note.
     
    Tags:
  2. PeterLester

    PeterLester Member

    675
    2
    1
    Posted by PeterLester, Jan 29, 2013 #2
    I am not an expert..... just getting into GCS now with my new WKM...... But I have a few comments to share.
    Setting up the software and radio link for me was a bit problematic but it's all resolved now.
    Even though the 1st waypoint is free..... you still have to get the WKM serial number upgraded or you will get the message "permission denied".
    Also the install disabled my Google Earth program. Un-install and re-install did not fix the problem....
    But help from this forum made it possible to get it all working again.

    RECOMMENDATIONS: Remove your props or disconnect your motors before testing the software and practice with "simulation mode" for a week or so first.
    That's easy for me since it is currently -30 deg C outside....
    Keyboard control is a bit awkward at first and might be problematic for some time IMHO.
    Connecting a Joystick might be better or a Great Planes Interlink Plus RC controller for a more familiar interface.
    I cannot comment on the 2.4Ghz version as I have the 900Mhz for longer range.

    For 900Mhz: Range can be 10km or longer in the country but even less than 1 km in city areas.
    The aerial antenna is a same as the ground antenna....... heavy/low cost and low performance leaving the door open for upgrading.

    I like the idea of swapping it out for a simple 900Mhz bare wire antenna which is much lighter, higher gain, and flexible so that a rough landing will not break off the radio antenna sma connector. I think I have a picture available to show. But it is not the correct antenna length for 910 Mhz (a HAM operator or radio operator can determine the best possible length from some basic antenna calcs).
    View attachment 9301

    The ground antenna can be a 1/2 wavelength or full wavelength omni magnetic roof mount antenna suitable for car or van roof mounting c/w long 50 ohm coax radio cable and connector to the Ground based radio transceiver for much more reliable range. Or you can use a high gain Yagi directional antenna for extra long distance (one direction only).
     

    Attached Files:

  3. hover.ch

    hover.ch Member

    147
    0
    0
    Jan 27, 2013
    Switzerland
    Posted by hover.ch, Jan 30, 2013 #3
    I mainly use my multicopter for aerial photography and filming. If possible, I operate the camera myself, that was one of the reasons for buying a multi-waypoint license. GS is pretty ok, but not intuitive at all. And, even worse, it is not very well designed for outdoor / in-the-field use. Fonts are rather small, buttons are small and keyboard shortcuts almost entirely missing. For an office application that's not an issue, for a ground control app to be operated in bright sunlight, that's a real pity. And, to be honest, the GS manual's quality doesn't match he excellent quality of the WKM stabilization system :shame:.
     
  4. PeterLester

    PeterLester Member

    675
    2
    1
    Posted by PeterLester, Jan 30, 2013 #4
    Good points...... I find it a challenge in the simulation mode and hope to get a joystick working instead but my current joystick will not function correctly. The way I see it this is a two man operation for initial flights and the best location for the PC would be inside a van where light can be controlled. It is easy to get an appropriate magnetic roof mount antenna and extend the Joystick outside for the flyer. Can't figure out where to find a 3rd party USB interface and driver to connect my Futaba T8FG Super Transmitter to control the GCS from a USB port.
     
  5. PeterLester

    PeterLester Member

    675
    2
    1
    Posted by PeterLester, Jan 30, 2013 #5
    For those who fear losing their MR while first using GCS there is a near firmware upgrade available today which includes an option to restrict the WKM flying distance horizontally as well as the previous vertical limit. Regarding the use of a Joystick or Interlink dual joystick controller connection..... haven't been able to work that out yet.
    1) Hard to find joysticks for sale anywhere anymore
    2) Haven't been able to track down a 3rd party cable and driver so that I can use my existing Futaba Tx to control MR thru GCS

    But DJI is just coming out with an IPad app and Iphone app that will enable the flyer to leave his heavy and power hungry Notebook PC at home and fly with touch screen joysticks on the IPad and Google Earth or equivalent also showing much like current GCS.
    The bright sunlight might still be an issue with IPad though.
    Yes.... there is room for improvement with the current GCS documentation and software for PC applications.

    My notebook PC can only run on battery power for about 10 minutes and less if I turn up the screen brightness.
    IPADs and IPhones should do much better.
     
  6. hover.ch

    hover.ch Member

    147
    0
    0
    Jan 27, 2013
    Switzerland
    Posted by hover.ch, Jan 31, 2013 #6
    Good to know - although I would wish many others things first ;-)

    IMHO it's somehow odd to use one and the same tx, once as an ordinary model R/C, once as a stupid input device (joystick), sending it's commands via GS/datalink. But the way GS is currently implemented, I also considered that option.

    That's pretty cool, but rather useless for me personally. Controlling a foamy $200 device through iPads/iPhones is pretty funny, but I don't like the idea to control my >$5000 device with a entertainment device. No joysticks/switches to feel, a glossy display in the bright sunlight, hard to imagine that I would ever want to try that. But that's just my personal view, I'm sure there are folks who love that.
     
  7. heli001

    heli001 Triple Tree Aerodrome

    57
    0
    0
    May 27, 2012
    Charlotte, NC
    Posted by heli001, Jan 31, 2013 #7
    I'm kind of curious about the ten minutes.....We use a Dell M6400 Workstation, which is kind of Power Hungry and we get about four hours on a battery......
     
  8. PeterLester

    PeterLester Member

    675
    2
    1
    Posted by PeterLester, Jan 31, 2013 #8
    Notebook computers batteries have become notorious for losing capacity quickly especially when left charging continuously and or PC running with all features including wireless n, bluetooth turned on and screen left on brightest setting. Mine is a good quality Asus ??? bought new Dec 2011. Original battery would no longer charge after 6 months. Replacement ordered from China was double the capacity but can now only run PC for about 12 minutes when all features are turned on. Time to order a new battery from China.... too hard to find anywhere else.
     
  9. PeterLester

    PeterLester Member

    675
    2
    1
    Posted by PeterLester, Jan 31, 2013 #9
    Considering that the Logitech Extreme 3D Pro has been removed from retailers shelves and it is very difficult to find a 3rd party RC buddy box system that will work with the existing GCS software, it appears DJI has decided to move forward as best they can with the IPad/iPhone way of doing things. Using the keyboard keys to control an expensive Multirotor seems really hokey to me!!!! (dates back to the early 70's for game control). But at least there is no analog issues to deal with, i.e., joystick pot cailbration etc.

     
  10. Tahoe Ed

    Tahoe Ed Active Member

    2,064
    27
    31
    Sep 14, 2011
    Posted by Tahoe Ed, Jan 31, 2013 #10
    We will have to see how the app works and then there is the BT interface with the Data Link to be considered. Time will tell. Right now it feels like an AR Drone. I want some confirmation on the use of this before I commit my $7K machine to it. That being said, I have a 900 mHz Down Link with a 6K range that I would love to be able to explore at least some of its capabilities.
     
  11. PeterLester

    PeterLester Member

    675
    2
    1
    Posted by PeterLester, Feb 1, 2013 #11
    Tahoe Ed....... You can probably pick up a magnetic roof mount whip antenna for 900 Mhz spectrum c/w long 50 ohm coax to connect directly to your GCS radio, mount on a van vehicle roof and extend your range significantly! The antennas that come with these units are entry level with lots of room for improvement (probably 1/4 wave antennas).... 1/2 wave or 5/8 wave antennas will have higher gain to make up for any losses in the coax extension antenna cable..... then there is the Yagi 5 and 7 element antenna options as well but must be pointed in the right direction.....

    We've used 900 Mhz fhss in the oil/gas industry for remote gas well automation...... and the best field tested range to date was nearly 50 kilometers and these were only 1/2 radios not far from groung level!!!
     
  12. Big Duke Six

    Big Duke Six Member

    13
    0
    0
    Jul 24, 2012
    Denver, CO
    Posted by Big Duke Six, Sep 4, 2014 #12
    Hi guys!! I'm kind of new to this thread, but here's where I'm at: I purchased a WKM with GCS about 18 months ago and just had not the time to build the machine I bought it for until now. I HAVE built a new groundstation with a Win 7 laptop in order to use Google Earth etc as this system specified back then (before the move toward the iPad). I am just now starting construction of my long-awaited hexa that will incorporate my WKM. I'm building it as a personal SAR/keep-track-of-my-dogs-and-other-wildlife-in-the-mountains machine with a FLIR as well as a small Panasonic video cam. It has taken me awhile to accumulate the parts for all this, unfortunately, so it has really dragged out longer than I thought it would. I have been flying other quads with both a Naza M and a Naza Lite, both with GPS. Anyway...

    Now for my questions, if you wouldn't mind: I have been envisioning having to use two separate RC systems for the pilot and video operator because 8 channels was just not enough for either one. (I am using JR 10x radios with FrSky modules) I noticed you referring to the use of a joystick running through the laptop as a means of controlling the hexa. This is totally new to me and I'm wondering if anyone has tried it, and does it work? Do you still have the failsafe functions of the WKM if you're flying the machine through the datalink vs flying through an RC link? I found the Logitech Extreme 3D Pro joysticks still available online. Is there something in particular that suits this joystick to use on a WKM system? How is it done?

    (FWIW - I solved the lack of runtime issue with my laptop by simply making an adapter from my groundstation batteries to a charge plug for the laptop. I am using two 7AH 12v gelcell batteries from Home Depot to power the groundstation, roughly $34 apiece. I think they are sold as home alarm system batteries.)

    Thanks for any and all your help on this. I will keep you updated on my build!

    John
     
  13. hover.ch

    hover.ch Member

    147
    0
    0
    Jan 27, 2013
    Switzerland
    Posted by hover.ch, Sep 5, 2014 #13
    I'm using GS for quite a while but I never controlled my RPA manually, through a GS joystick. GS works fair enough for mission planning, mission upload and limited mission control. But the overall design of the software let me doubt whether I wanted to use direct control modes through a joystick or mouse clicks. However, I don't have any hard facts against such an approach. I just wonder, that DJI has not made any improvements on GS for years, IMHO there would be many things to do to keep up with other ground control software, like APM.
     
  14. SilicaStorm

    SilicaStorm Threshold of Control

    2
    0
    0
    Sep 13, 2014
    Abu Dhabi, UAE
    Posted by SilicaStorm, Sep 13, 2014 #14
    Great reading this thread, anyone experimented with and 2.4Ghz antennas on AirEnd/GroundEnd ?

    Thanks in advance


    Andrew
     
  15. RoryG

    RoryG Member

    6
    4
    0
    Sep 15, 2014
    Posted by RoryG, Sep 17, 2014 #15
    Hi Andrew,

    I'm looking at various options to increase the datalink range, mine currently craps out at 350 - 400m no matter how I position the air end antennas. I've ordered a TBS 2.4GHz 11dbi yagi for the ground end which should hopefully help. It has a 47º beam width which is almost the same as the five turn helical I use for my 5.8GHz VRx and have no problem keeping it pointed at the aircraft enough for reliable reception.

    I'll post back here the results.

    Cheers,

    Rory
     
  16. SilicaStorm

    SilicaStorm Threshold of Control

    2
    0
    0
    Sep 13, 2014
    Abu Dhabi, UAE
    Posted by SilicaStorm, Sep 17, 2014 #16
    Rory,

    Yes that would be great if you could post your results.... I wonder what is the best aftermarket antenna air/ground combo to ensure no control loss from the GS.

    Cheers,


    Andrew
     
  17. DroneZone

    DroneZone New Member

    1
    0
    0
    Oct 26, 2014
    Posted by DroneZone, Oct 26, 2014 #17
    DJI Ground System to phone?

    Hi all,

    Curious since thread is active. Say is there a way to have DJI Groundsystem tied to PHONE UI, particularly Samsung S3?
    I see there is a PC Ground Station vs IPAD Ground Station.

    If not, I AM MOST CERTAIN to use HOME PC as a database and view on phone. Curious if the wheel is invented before exploring.

    THANKS.
     
Loading...

Share This Page

Loading...