When using Pixhawk hardware combined with a companion PC, it is typical to be using some form of an FTDI USB serial adapter to connect to the Pixhawks TELEM2 port. These generic FTDI USB adapters aren’t built with Pixhawk use in mind, therefore lack connectors and proper configuration for plug-and-play use.
@mhkabir and myself have solved this problem by creating our own FTDI adapter to be plug and play compatible with all Pixhawks FMUv2 and up (JST-GH 6-pin connector). We follow the Dronecode standard for pin to pin compatibility, so setting up is as simple as connecting a USB cable and the 6-pin JST-GH to the Pixhawk.
We also worked in some nifty features such as:
- Flow control: to give you the best serial port reliability and speed
- Solder pads: for connecting USB and serial lines for increased reliability (no connectors needed)
- Power switching: can choose between companion and pixhawk 5v to power FTDI
I’ve been using this in various projects and it always speeds up development time to have something simple to setup with the Pixhawk hardware.
You can find a link to purchase/check it out here: JST-GH FTDI Adapter
The Intel NUC shown below is this model (NUC7i7DN): https://www.intel.com/content/dam/support/us/en/documents/mini-pcs/nuc-kits/NUC7i7DN_TechProdSpec.pdf
Example: FTDI breakout connected to companion computer (NUC) and Pixhawk 4 using a USB Mini B cables and 6-pin JST-GH to 6-pin JST-GH below.
NOTE: It is ALWAYS recommended to solder the USB cable data and power wires to the FTDI board with an appropriate connector on the other end connecting to your companion computer securely.