Communications

PXFmini OS is pre-configured to create an WiFi hotspot in the 5GHz bandwidth, in order to be able of using together 2.4GHz RC and WiFi. The WiFi dongle should be connected before the board is powered on.

The WiFi can be used for communicate with the autopilot, transfer files such as logs, plan a mission using a GCS (Ground Control Station), enable video streaming even control the drone.

MicroSD

First at all, remember that you need to copy the image into the MicroSD Card. If you don't know how to do it follow this instructions:

Then, plug the MicroSD card with the image you want to run into the MicroSD slot. The MicroSD card should have been flashed correctly.

HDMI

Our Operative System have a GUI, the first time you boot the OS you will see a nice desktop.


After selecting a vehicle the GUI will be disabled, this means that if you connect a HDMI to your Raspberry Pi will be in text mode.

To select a vehicle refer to APM or PX4 sections

You can start the GUI typing in the terminal, after stopping apm service:

sudo systemctl stop apm.service
startx

PWM

PXFmini has 8 channel of PWM output. Each channel has 25 mA current sink capability at 5V. In these channels, the most typical devices that you could connect are: ESCs, servos, gimbal servos,... The PWM can be used for powering the system, refer to Power section.

The top row (~) provides the PWM signal, the center (+) provides 5v and the bottom (-) is the GND signal. Make sure you plug the device connector in the right way.

The next image show which are the PWM channels:

RC Input

The radio control receiver must be connected in the channel 9 rail, as shown below:

Cables

Cables for drones with connectors complying with the Dronecode Autopilot Connector Standard. The cables make use of the JST GH connectors providing a simplified experience. Hybrid JST GH/DF13 and traditional DF13 cables are also available for backwards compatibility.

Cables for the PXFmini can be purchased from here

Please contact with sales@erlerobotics.com after making the order in order to send suitable cables for this review of PXFmini.

WARNING: When making DF-13 to JST-GH cables, you need to cross the pins. That's because the pin 1 number of both connectors are flipped:

I2C

The PXFmini contains two I2C bus connectors, which gives access to the I2C bus. In this bus you could connect lots of different sensor and devices, i.e.: compass, gas sensors, temperature sensors, ...

Telemetry

Copter/Plane/Rover support sharing information with a ground station (or transmitter) using telemetry.

If you wish to use a telemetry device in PXFmini, you have two ways of attaching it. You could use the UART port to attach it or you could plug it to USB port:

If you connect the telemetry into UART port, in the autopilot launch file put here (to connect to GCS):

$APM_BIN_DIR/ArduCopter.elf -A udp:10.0.0.2:6000 -C /dev/ttyAMA0 $FLAGS

If you connect the telemetry into USB port, in the autopilot launch file put here (to connect to GCS):

$APM_BIN_DIR/ArduCopter.elf -A udp:10.0.0.2:6000 -C /dev/ttyUSB0 $FLAGS