ROS Software Maintainer: Erle Robotics


Erle-HexaCopter is a "heavy lifter" version of Erle-Copter, a Linux-based drone that uses the award winning APM:Copter autopilot software. It’s capable of the different flight modes and ideal for outdoor operations. It has been designed for an extended flight time and it can carry a takeoff weight of about 3-4 kilograms.

Erle-HexaCopter is powered by Erle-brain Linux autopilot which includes ROS and communicates with the flight software using the mavros ROS package.


ROS Indigo comes preinstalled in the Erle-Brain 2, the flight computer contained in Erle-HexaCopter.

ROS Packages


This section explains how to use ROS/Gazebo simulator to simulate Erle-Copter. The main characteristics of the simulation are:

  • Simulation stability and deterministic UAV response (step lock mechanism)
  • Simplified ROS/Gazebo simulation launch, fully configurable through arguments to the well-used SITL launch script,
  • Integration of the GPS sensor provided by Hector's plugin
  • Georeferenced overlay map image on MavProxy, to better assess the UAV position relative to its simulated environment

In order to begin it is required to arm. Some of the available features provided are:

  • Inertial measurement unit (IMU) which provides linear acceleration, angular velocity, atmospheric pressure and altitude
  • Compass which provides heading
  • GPS which provides longitude, latitude and altitude
  • Erle-Copter is equipped with 2 cameras, one front and one bottom, 2 sonar sensors, one front and one button and it's also possible to include a laser 2D or depth cameras.
  • It allows joystick manipulation

Erle-copter simulation

More info: Erle Robotics official documentation






PXFmini Autopilot shield

Erle Robotics maintains a Documentation that mean to instruct how to use their technology.

A video series about how to code autonomous behaviors for drones with this technology is available at

Getting Help

Post in our forum at


Erle-HexaCopter is available through the Erle Robotics store.

Wiki: Robots/Erle-HexaCopter (last edited 2016-04-25 15:44:12 by inigomuguruza)