# Control a 2.4 Ghz AR Drone from the computer [closed]

I had a Doyusha Nano Spider R/C mini-copter, it's controlled by a 4ch joystick 2.4 Ghz.

I look for a low cost method to control it from the computer. The software is not a problem, but how can I transform the WIFI or the Bluetooth signal of the computer to an R/C signal compatible with the mini-copter receptor?

Or is there another solution that is low cost?

The simplest way to do this, is to buy a more advanced PPM transmitter that has a trainer port, and use this PCTx device to control it from your PC through USB. They provice a simple library and some sample code to get your started. The control signals go from your

software -> through the PCTx device -> PPM transmitter -> over RF to your copter


Compatible transmitters are listed on that link.

I'm not familiar with your particular brand of mini-copter, but im assuming it uses standard 4 channel RC-PPM control signals. If it doesn't, the above solution will not work.

You can also, if you are so inclined roll out your own PC based PWM transmitter. This would involve writing software to implement the PPM signal, which can get a bit involved. You might even need some sort of an oscilloscope or a signal analyzer to debug issues. Some people have created Arduino based solutions. Examples: 1

Again, the assumption is that your copter uses standard RC-PWM. If it doesn't you'll have to first figure out what protocol it uses and then try to emulate that using software and an RF Tx module.

Since your copter receives 2.4Ghz radio signals, there is no drop-in solition to directly use WiFi or Bluetooth.

• Thanks for the useful information, yes I have a 4 channel RC controller, so I need just a PCTx device to interface it with a computer or an arduino? – Amine Horseman Sep 27 '14 at 1:33
• does your controller have a trainer port? – RaGe Sep 28 '14 at 11:06
• I don't know, how can I verify this? – Amine Horseman Sep 28 '14 at 11:47
• Thanks for the useful information, yes I have a 6 channel RC controller, so I need just a PCTx device to interface it with a computer or an arduino? – user15105 Oct 25 '16 at 22:12
• If you have a new question, please ask it by clicking the Ask Question button. Include a link to this question if it helps provide context. - From Review – Ben Oct 26 '16 at 0:36

In my university lab we hacked the radio controller with an arduino that receives the inputs from the computer and outputs to the controller. The arduino only substitutes the joysticks. So we still use the 2.4GHz controller to control the drone but matlab is sending control signals to the arduino which sends them to the original 2.4GHz controller, which sends them to the drone. It works! We've can control the drones position within 3cm in a 3x3x3[m] area just by using a PID controller and a stereo camera as the sensor. And this was done in a 20€ plastic quadcopter.

• Goncalo, I'm trying to do something pretty similar to what you have done in your lab, but I'm quite new to this subject. So I wanted to know if you used any other flight controller aboard your drone? Because as far as I know, the flight controllers handle the control task by themselves; They just need high level commands (i.e. throttle level, etc.). I can't understand which part of the control algorithm had you handled with the PID (implemented in Matlab) and which part was done on the on-board controller. Could you please shed some light on this matter? – Manzoori Sep 9 '15 at 12:15