Long-range RC controllers for UAVs

Mike and his team recently decided to extend the range of a basic remote control setup for a UAV project.

Ultimately, Mike’s crew decided on a pair of Atmel-powered Arduino Mini boards and Digi Xtend 900Mhz modems to get the job done.

As HackADay’s Will Sweatman notes, the 1 watt transceivers provide a fantastic range of approximately 40 miles.

So, how did Mike do it?

“He set the transmitter up so it can plug directly into any RC controller training port, decoding the incoming signal and converting it into a serial data package for transmitting,” Sweatman explained.

“While they don’t provide the range of other RF transmitters we’ve seen, the 40 mile range of the modem’s are more than enough for most projects, including High Altitude Balloon missions.”

Interested in learning more? The code for the Arduino transmitter system is available on GitHub here, while a Wikipedia page about the project can be accessed here.

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