Inspired by Ethan Perrin’s MicroQuad on his blog, I decided to venture into the quadcopter “scene”. His uses a PIC running at 80MHz (I think), but mine will hopefully be able to get by with an ATMega328 running at only 20MHz. I want to use an ATMega because then I can develop in the Arduino IDE to get the basic concept working and move on to regular C to program the final version. The only concern I have is that 20MHz is not a fast enough clock speed. Quadcopters need to have a fast processor to keep them responsive and stabilized. I haven’t decided on what the radio receiver will be, but it will probably use a serial interface.
The first design that I am working on will not have any accelerometers or the like integrated onto the main PCB, but will instead have break-out headers for connecting devices. I plan to have a 3-axis ADXL335 accelerometer and an Ultimate GPS Breakout from Adafruit. I know that only 3-axis is not ideal, but if more are actually required, please let me know.
I am not done routing the PCB in EAGLE yet, but it will only be 1.25 inches square. Tiny!