Evaluation board accelerates drone design

12th December 2017
Posted By : Mick Elliott
Evaluation board accelerates drone design

The STMicroelectronics (ST) STEVAL-FCU001V1 evaluation board, a compact flight-controller unit (FCU) suitable for small- and medium-sized quadcopter drone designs is available at Mouser Electronics. Scalable and efficient with sample firmware to accelerate development, the FCU helps quadcopter designers evaluate the performance of inertial measurement unit sensors during real flight conditions.

The evaluation board incorporates an STM32F401 32-bit microcontroller with Arm Cortex-M4 core, an SPBTLE-RF0 module with Bluetoothlow energy 4.1 connectivity, and an STC4054 800mA lithium-ion/lithium polymer battery-charger chip.

Designers can use a smartphone or tablet to control the board through the Bluetooth connection or can connect a radio frequency (RF) receiver to the board’s PWM inputs to interface with a standard RF remote controller.

The board also includes ST’s LSM6DSL iNEMO inertial module with low-power digital accelerometer and gyroscope, its LIS2MDL high-performance magnetometer, and its LPS22HD MEMS pressure sensor to support 3D navigation applications.

Designers can drive four brushed DC motors through the onboard STL6N3LLH6 TripFET H6 Power MOSFETs or brushless DC (BLDC) motors through an electronic speed-control unit.

In addition, the board offers SWD, I2C and USART interfaces that allow for firmware development and debugging as well as support for additional external sensors or RF modules.

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