Feasibility of implementing drone with tilting thrusters on PX4

Hi everyone,

I am interested in using PX4 to program flight of a drone that has tilting thrusters. The thrusters will be controlled via servomotors (see example paper and video: The Foldable Drone: A Morphing Quadrotor that can Squeeze and Fly).

Do you think this will be possible in PX4 ? At the least I will need to change the mixing as a function of the angle of the servomotors. I will probably also have to implement some sort of custom low level controller to take into account the folding frame.

Any tips would be highly appreciated - just making sure that I’m not going against the design philosophy of PX4 before trying to undertake this project.

Thanks !

Hi Ioannis,
usually “tilting thrusters/rotors” refers to drones like this one Voliro: An Omnidirectional Hexacopter With Tiltable Rotors. In that case, the angle of the thrusters around the arm axis changes in time, and the control allocation is completely different. I customized PX4 to add this airframe and will post the GitHub link soon.
With the configuration that you linked, instead, what changes is the angle around the vertical body axis right? so something similar to my customization can be done.
If you want we can speak about that and collaborate, if you need any help.

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Hi Salvatore,

Thank you for your reply.

Yes indeed the angle of the arms of the drone will be changing with time as you described instead of tilting the thrusters. I would be very interested to see how you managed to customize the airframe to achieve flight with a drone like Voliro in order to see how I can apply this idea to my work.

Do you think you could share some of the code to do this ? I would also be very interested in collaborating.

Best regards,

Hello, Salvatore,
Just wondering if you have a github post with your PX4 custom airframe. It would be very helpful to understand framework. Thanks!