Is it possible to make a drone to fly in fixed altitude and move in fixed trajectory without GPS. (Drone has to move in fixed path which is already defined). I am saying without GPS because drone has to move inside the hospital / office (moving from one floor to another floor).

I searched google and I find GMapping Slam for trajectory movement. But this does not work when moving from one floor to another floor.

I there any options I can use to achieve my requirement.


  • $\begingroup$ are you sure that a flying drone is suitable for use inside a hospital? $\endgroup$
    – jsotola
    Jun 21 '19 at 4:29
  • $\begingroup$ When you did a web search of "navigating a robot inside a building" what sorts of results did you get? Were any of them useful? $\endgroup$
    – TimWescott
    Jun 21 '19 at 19:39

In the situation you describe, it is the easiest if you install "eyes" to the drone. Have at least 6 sensors to detect the closest obstacles (walls, ceiling, floor) on the 3 coordinates.

Additionally, you should have a "map" of the building, so the drone can navigate through it. GPS uses the same idea: some coordinates + some map.

However, you must be aware that inside a building there are many more things, than just walls. And a hospital is even more special. There are a lot of fixtures, lots of cables, conduits, lamps, perfusion "posts" (or however they are called). Even with installing good resolution cameras as "eyes", I still think that there is a significant safety risk for operating the drone within a building. What about the air flow from AC units? What about the drone accidentally crashing inside a patient under surgery? What about the drone running out of "juice" and just "crashing" wherever it happens to be?

While it is doable as a hobby / research, real-life use has limited applicability.

Did I say the sometimes ceilings are very close to the floors, and the drone will start navigating through the people's haircuts? :)


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