MAVLink Communication

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The information on this page refers to firmware v2.60e and higher.

In addition to the serial commands, the STorM32 controller also understands MAVLink messages, as defined in the MAVLink standard. The STorM32 controller supports a rich set of MAVLink messages and features, the MAVLink 2 protocol, the MAVLink Camera Protocol, and the MAVLink FTP microservice.

The STorM32 controller in fact integrates two MAVLink components, which are referred to as the MAVLink Gimbal and MAVLink Camera components:

  • MAVLink Gimbal: This component deals with the gimbal operation. It is the part which you know from older firmware versions, but with massively extended functionality.
  • MAVLink Camera: This component is coupled with the NT Camera and provides a complete MAVLink Camera Protocol microservice server. It allows you to control the camera through MAVLink in unprecedented useful ways.

The MAVLink Gimbal and MAVLink Camera components share some parameters, but function-wise they are independent of each other. That is, both can be used simultaneously, the MAVLink Gimbal component can be used alone without the MAVLink Camera component, and vice versa.

Comment: In case you find it confusing what "two MAVLink components" is supposed to mean, then just connect the STorM32 controller (with both components enabled) to MissionPlanner: You will find that it will show you two components, one named GIMBAL and the other named CAMERA :).

Contents

Parameters

The STorM32's MAVLink parameters are located in the [GUI:Interfaces Tool] window, which is accessible via the [GUI:Experts Only] menu.

It has the following parameters:

  • Mavlink Gimbal: Enables the MAVLink Gimbal component and sets its component ID and gimbal device ID.
  • Mavlink Gimbal Stream: Activates emission of the selected message by the Gimbal component. Also determines if the STorM32 controller is in gimbal manager mode.
  • Mavlink ComPort: Selects the serial com port which is used for the MAVLink communication. Applies to both the MAVLink Gimbal and MAVLink Camera components.
  • Mavlink System ID: Sets the system ID of the STorM32 controller (default = “0”). Applies to both the MAVLink Gimbal and MAVLink Camera components. If it is set to “0”, then the system ID is autodetected, i.e., the STorM32 waits for incoming heartbeat messages from an autopilot and then uses its system ID.
  • Mavlink Camera: Enables the MAVLink Camera component and sets its component ID.

The STorM32 system ID should match the system ID of the autopilot, or autodetection should be enabled with Mavlink System ID = “0” (which is the default).

The baudrate of the serial port selected with Mavlink ComPort is determined by the respective baudrate parameter in the [GUI:Interfaces Tool] window. Per default it is 115200 bps. It is recommended to use a baudrate of 230400 bps, if possible.

Comment: In the [GUI:Dashboard] Info Center, the MAVLINK field shows MAVLINK is PRESENT when the STorM32 controller is receiving valid MAVLink messages, implying a MAVLink connection is established. This can be handy for diagnosis.

Comment: If Mavlink Gimbal or Mavlink Camera is set, then the serial port selected in Mavlink ComPort is exclusive to the MAVLink communication. That is, incoming MAVLink messages on this port are accepted and served, but serial commands are rejected, while on all other ports serial messages are accepted but MAVLink messages are rejected. If both parameters are off, then the STorM32 controller will, in addition to the serial commands, also accept MAVLink messages on any of its serial ports, but it will not emit any MAVLink messages such as heartbeats.

Comment: For v1.3x boards: If the UART port is selected for MAVLink, then the BT module and the serial MAVLink connection cannot be used at the same time.

MAVLink Protocol Version

STorM32 uses the MAVLink v2 protocol version.

It also supports the MAVLink v1 protocol insofar as it properly reads and handles incoming MAVLink v1 packets, but it does not send out v1 packets, i.e., all MAVLink messages emitted by the STorM32 controller are in the MAVLink v2 protocol format.

Comment: In older STorM32 firmware versions it was possible to choose between MAVLink v1 and v2 formats. This option has been removed, there really should be no reason nowadays anymore to not use MAVLink v2.

Gimbal Protocol V2

The STorM32 controller partially supports the MAVLink Gimbal Protocol V2 standard. That is: It supports the v2 gimbal device messages with restrictions; it does not support the v2 gimbal manager messages.

In detail:

In addition, the STorM32 controller implements its own MAVLink dialect (storm32.xml) and a main part of it is the STorM32 Gimbal Protocol defining the STorM32's versions of the gimbal device and gimbal manager messages (identifiable by the 'STORM32' label in the names). They may look somewhat similar to the standard messages, and they can indeed adopt the same behavior and functionality as the standard, but the underlying concept is different and provides a much richer and more mature concept for gimbal operation than the standard. For details please consult the article STorM32 Gimbal Protocol.

In order to identify a STorM32 gimbal, and hence if the STorM32's extensions are available, request the GIMBAL_DEVICE_INFORMATION message. The vendor name and model name fields are populated with "olliw.eu" and "STorM32", respectively, which should allow unambiguous identification.

Virtual Channels

The STorM32 controller listens to the RC_CHANNELS MAVLink message, and can be configured to use its channel values as virtual input (for configuration see e.g. the manuals for using STorM32 with BetaPilot or ArduPilot).

In this configuration, all STorM32 functions can be invoked by selecting any of the “Virtual-1” - “Virtual-16” input channels, exactly as one would do it if the STorM32 controller would be directly connected to a receiver by traditional means (PWM, PPM, sbus, and so on), except that the ppm values for the virtual input channels are read off the RC_CHANNELS MAVLink message. This allows us to do many useful things, such as activating a script or triggering video on/off from the transmitter.

Comment: The STorM32 controller is not requesting the RC_CHANNELS MAVLink message by itself. This must be achieved by the user, and the how to do it depends on specifics such as flight controller, flight controller firmware, system setup, and so on. Usually, the flight controller has an option which makes it streaming this message. In case of BetaPilot, this message is streamed by default.

STorM32-Link

The STorM32 controller listens to the AUTOPILOT_STATE_FOR_GIMBAL_DEVICE MAVLink message, and can be configured to use its data for the STorM32-Link.

For details on the configuration, please read the manual Using STorM32 with BetaPilot.

Pass-Through

It is possible to connect the STorM32 GUI to any routing component in a MAVLink system, such as an autopilot or on-board companion computer, and to communicate directly with the STorM32 gimbal via MAVLink tunnel messages.

This is extremely convenient when the STorM32 gimbal is permanently installed in a vehicle, as it allows us to configure the gimbal without having to have physical access to the STorM32's USB or UART ports. The pass-through also works with wireless telemetry links, which opens up options such as tuning the gimbal during flight, and other unheard-of possibilities for in-flight control of the gimbal.

The pass-through mode of operation is enabled by checking in the GUI the [MAVLink] checkbox, which is located next to the [Port] combobox. The GUI then effectively operates like a mini MAVLink ground control station (the system ID is determined from the attached components, its component ID is MAV_COMP_ID_TUNNEL_NODE = 242 per default).

Comment: The pass-through communication is based on standard MAVLink, and thus should work for any MAVLink standard compliant autopilot. The bottom line is that it may not work on systems which do not fully support the MAVlink standard, such as native ArduPilot systems.

Comment: Pass-through works for both the MAVLink Gimbal and MAVLink Camera components. The GUI chooses the MAVLink Gimbal if enabled, otherwise the MAVLink Camera for communication.

Comment: GUI features which need physical access to a USB/UART port on the STorM32 controller do not work in pass-through mode. For instance, upgrading firmware won't work.

This preliminary demo video demonstrates the pass-through feature:

MAVLink FTP

The MAVLink Gimbal and MAVLink Camera components support the MAVLink FTP micro service, which allows us to download the various camera definition files stored in the STorM32 controller.

Supported OpCodes/Commands

These opcodes/commands are support (unsupported commands will be NACKed with error code Fail):

MAVFTP_OPCODE_None
MAVFTP_OPCODE_TerminateSession
MAVFTP_OPCODE_ResetSessions
MAVFTP_OPCODE_ListDirectory
MAVFTP_OPCODE_OpenFileRO
MAVFTP_OPCODE_ReadFile
MAVFTP_OPCODE_CalcFileCRC32

Testing the Connection

The serial MAVLink connection can be tested in several ways. Suggestions are given in Using STorM32 with BetaPilot: Testing the Connection.

MAVLink Gimbal

Setting the Mavlink Gimbal parameter enables the MAVLink Gimbal component, and also determines its component ID: “Gimbal1” corresponds to MAV_COMP_ID_GIMBAL (= 154), “Gimbal2” to MAV_COMP_ID_GIMBAL2 (= 171), “Gimbal3” to MAV_COMP_ID_GIMBAL3 (= 172), and so on.

  • Mavlink Gimbal = “Gimbal1” or higher
  • Mavlink Gimbal Stream: Activates the emission of the selected message with a frequency of 4 Hz.

The system ID can be adjusted via the Mavlink System ID parameter, which usually can be left at its default value.

The gimbal device ID, which is relevant for the Gimbal Protocol V2 and STorM32 Gimbal Protocol extensions, is always set to be identical to the component ID.

The STorM32 controller becomes a gimbal manager when Mavlink Gimbal Stream = “manager status” is set. Otherwise it behaves as a normal gimbal device.

A common setting for Mavlink Gimbal Stream is “mountstatus”.

Messages

The following MAVLink messages are supported:

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_HEARTBEAT (#0, 0x00)

See HEARTBEAT.

The emission of the heartbeat needs to be activated in the GUI via the Mavlink Gimbal parameter. The heartbeat is emitted at 1 Hz, with the following values:

  • type: MAV_TYPE_GIMBAL (= 26)
  • autopilot: MAV_AUTOPILOT_INVALID (= 8)
  • base_mode: MAV_MODE_FLAG_STABILIZE_ENABLED (= 0x10) and MAV_MODE_FLAG_SAFETY_ARMED (= 0x80) are set in NORMAL mode, MAV_MODE_FLAG_CUSTOM_MODE_ENABLED (= 0x01) is always set
  • custom_mode: lowest byte (0x000000FF) = STATE value; highest bit (0x80000000) = set if prearm checks have not passed
  • system_status: either MAV_STATE_BOOT (= 1), MAV_STATE_STANDBY (= 3), MAV_STATE_ACTIVE (= 4) or MAV_STATE_EMERGENCY (= 6)

The prearm check flag in the custom_mode field allows GCSes and autopilots to determine the STorM32's prearm check condition, and to act accordingly.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_SYSTEM_TIME (#2, 0x02)

See SYSTEM_TIME.

The UNIX epoch time in this message is logged by the NT Logger (if time_unix_usec is > 0). The SYSTEM_TIME message is usually emitted by the autopilot, and the UNIX epoch time becomes > 0 when e.g. a 3D GPS fix has been obtained. The UNIX epoch time facilitates synchronizing the autopilot data logs and the NT Logger data logs.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_REQUEST_READ (#20, 0x14)

See PARAM_REQUEST_READ.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_REQUEST_LIST (#21, 0x15)

See PARAM_REQUEST_LIST.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_VALUE (#22, 0x16)

See PARAM_VALUE.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_SET (#23, 0x17)

See PARAM_SET.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_ATTITUDE (#30, 0x1E)

See ATTITUDE.

Emission of the attitude message with 4 Hz can be activated in the GUI via the Mavlink Gimbal Stream parameter, or by requesting a data stream or single-shot emission with the MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL or MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE commands, respectively. The yaw angle is relative to the forward direction.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_RC_CHANNELS (#65, 0x41)

See RC_CHANNELS.

The parameter Virtual Channel Configuration needs to be set to “serial” for the values received by this message to become available for inputs as “Virtual-1” to “Virtual-16”.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_COMMAND_INT (#75, 0x4B)

See COMMAND_INT.

Same as for MAVLINK_MSG_ID_COMMAND_LONG, see next.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_COMMAND_LONG (#76, 0x4C)

See COMMAND_LONG.

Each command is acknowledged with a COMMAND_ACK message (with result MAV_RESULT_ACCEPTED or MAV_RESULT_DENIED for supported commands, and MAV_RESULT_UNSUPPORTED otherwise). The following commands are supported (parameter fields not mentioned are ignored):

MAV_CMD_DO_SET_PARAMETER (#180, 0xB4)
* param1 = parameter index
* param2 = parameter value
MAV_CMD_DO_SET_SERVO (#183, 0xB7)
* param1 = instance (must be 0, else denied)
* param2 = pwm value (only 700...2300 accepted, else denied)
MAV_CMD_DO_DIGICAM_CONFIGURE (#202, 0xCA)
* param1 = mode 
     0: CAMERA_MODE_PHOTO
     1: CAMERA_MODE_VIDEO
* param6 = command identity 
     0: command accepted by all cameras
     1-6: command accepted only if camera is CAMERA1-CAMERA6
MAV_CMD_DO_DIGICAM_CONTROL (#203, 0xCB)
* param5 = shot
     if CAMERA_MODE_PHOTO: 
         0: off
         1: SHUTTER
     if CAMERA_MODE_VIDEO
         0: VIDEOOFF
         1: VIDEOON
* param6 = command identity 
     0: command accepted by all cameras
     1-6: command accepted only if camera is CAMERA1-CAMERA6
MAV_CMD_DO_MOUNT_CONFIGURE (#204, 0xCC)
* param1 = mount_mode (0 = MAV_MOUNT_MODE_RETRACT and 1 = MAV_MOUNT_MODE_NEUTRAL recenters the camera)
 
The command is denied in gimbal manager mode.
MAV_CMD_DO_MOUNT_CONTROL (#205, 0xCD)
* param1 = pitch, angle in degree (COMMENT: the sign is opposite to convention!)
* param2 = roll, angle in degree
* param3 = yaw, angle in degree (COMMENT: the sign is opposite to convention!)
* param7 = mount_mode (0 = MAV_MOUNT_MODE_RETRACT and 1 = MAV_MOUNT_MODE_NEUTRAL recenters the camera)
 
The command is denied in gimbal manager mode.
MAV_CMD_DO_SET_CAM_TRIGG_DIST(#206, 0xCE)
* param1 = distance (must be 0, else denied)
* param3 = trigger camera once immediately 
     0: off
     1: SHUTTER
MAV_CMD_PREFLIGHT_STORAGE (#245, 0xF5)
* param1 = parameter storage
     0: restore parameter values from EEPROM
     1: store parameter values in EEPROM
     2: ignored, as it maybe harmful
MAV_CMD_PREFLIGHT_REBOOT_SHUTDOWN(#246, 0xF6)
* param3
     0: do nothing
     1: restart with full reset
     2: shut down motors
* param4 = component ID, must be 0 or match gimbal ID
MAV_CMD_GET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL (#510, 0x01FE)
* param1 =  MAVLink message ID
MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL (#511, 0x01FF)
* param1 =  message ID of the message to stream
     30: stream ATTITUDE message
     158: stream MOUNT_STATUS message (target is set according to param7, for details see message description)
     60001: stream STORM32_GIMBAL_DEVICE_STATUS message (target is set according to param7, see message description)
     60011: stream STORM32_GIMBAL_MANAGER_STATUS message
* param2 = interval between two messages, in microseconds; set to -1 to disable
* param7 = request target
 
Stream rates of up to 100 Hz are supported. Note however that this can take a significant toll and may strain the STorM32's microcontroller capabilities. Please resort to common sense. The resulting stream rate is in multiples of 1.5 ms.
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE (#512, 0x0200)
* param1 = message ID of the requested message
     30: send ATTITUDE message
     148: send AUTOPILOT_VERSION message
     158: send MOUNT_STATUS message (target is set according to param7, default is requester IDs)
     253: send STATUSTEXT message with firmware and board type information
     283: send GIMBAL_DEVICE_INFORMATION message
     300: send PROTOCOL_VERSION message
     60001: send STORM32_GIMBAL_DEVICE_STATUS message (target is set according to param7, default is requester IDs)
     60010: send STORM32_GIMBAL_MANAGER_INFORMATION message (only if in gimbal manager mode)
     60011: send STORM32_GIMBAL_MANAGER_STATUS message (only if in gimbal manager mode)
* param7 = response target
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_PROTOCOL_VERSION (#519, 0x0207)
  send PROTOCOL_VERSION message (still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_AUTOPILOT_CAPABILITIES (#520, 0x0208)
  send AUTOPILOT_VERSION message (still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_DO_SEND_BANNER (#42428, 0xA5BC)
  send STATUSTEXT messages with banner
MAV_CMD_STORM32_DO_GIMBAL_MANAGER_CONTROL_PITCHYAW (#60002, 0xEA62)
  This command is handled in gimbal manager mode. The gimbal device ID (param7) must match the STorM32's gimbal component ID.
MAV_CMD_STORM32_DO_GIMBAL_MANAGER_SETUP (#60010, 0xEA6A)
  This command is handled in gimbal manager mode. The gimbal device ID (param7) must match the STorM32's gimbal component ID.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_COMMAND_ACK (#77, 0x4D)

See COMMAND_ACK.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_FILE_TRANSFER_PROTOCOL (#110, 0x6E)

See FILE_TRANSFER_PROTOCOL.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_AUTOPILOT_VERSION (#148, 0x94)

See AUTOPILOT_VERSION.

The flight_sw_version and board_version fields are set to the firmware version and board revision, VID and PID are set to 0x16D0 and 0x0FCB, respectively, and UID is set to the STM32 UUID.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_DIGICAM_CONTROL (#155, 0x9B)

ArduPilot specific message. See DIGICAM_CONTROL.

Deprecated message, but supported for compatibility.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_MOUNT_CONFIGURE (#156, 0x9C)

ArduPilot specific message. See MOUNT_CONFIGURE.

Deprecated message, but supported for compatibility.

The message is denied in gimbal manager mode.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_MOUNT_CONTROL (#157, 0x9D)

ArduPilot specific message. See MOUNT_CONTROL.

Deprecated message, but supported for compatibility.

The message is denied in gimbal manager mode.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_MOUNT_STATUS (#158, 0x9E)

ArduPilot specific message. See MOUNT_STATUS.

Emission of this message with 4 Hz can be activated in the GUI with the Mavlink Gimbal Stream parameter, with a user defined rate by requesting a data stream with the MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL command, or by requesting a single-shot emission with the MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE command. The yaw angle is relative to the forward direction.

The 4 Hz message stream activated with Mavlink Gimbal Stream is always broadcast. The messages emitted as result of MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL or MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE commands can be broadcast or targeted, as specified by param7 in the command. For MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL: If a stream of targeted messages is requested, then the emission is in addition to the broadcast 4 Hz stream (if activated). If a broadcast stream is requested, it overrules the broadcast 4 Hz stream.

This allows for two streams, one broadcast stream at low rate e.g. to inform a GCS and one targeted stream at high rate e.g. to inform an on-board companion computer.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_AUTOPILOT_VERSION_REQUEST (#183, 0xB7)

ArduPilot specific message. See AUTOPILOT_VERSION_REQUEST.

Is supported, but better use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_MESSAGE_INTERVAL (#244, 0xF4)

See MESSAGE_INTERVAL.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STATUSTEXT (#253, 0xFD)

See STATUSTEXT.

This message is sent out after a PARAM_REQUEST_LIST has been served, and provides firmware and board type information.

Emission of this message with a user-supplied text can also be triggered through a script using the SENDMAVTEXT script command.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_GIMBAL_DEVICE_INFORMATION (#283, 0x11B)

See GIMBAL_DEVICE_INFORMATION.

Note that the STorM32-specific gimbal device capability flag is 32 bit wide; however the STorM32's extra flags are located in the higher word (bits 16-32) while the lower word is standard compliant (storm32.xml). The lower word is copied into the cap_field and the higher word into the custom_cap_field of the GIMBAL_DEVICE_INFORMATION.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_GIMBAL_DEVICE_SET_ATTITUDE (#284, 0x11C)

See GIMBAL_DEVICE_SET_ATTITUDE.

Only handled if the v2 gimbal device is enabled with the Mavlink Gimbal Stream parameter. The yaw axis can only be in follow/pan mode.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_GIMBAL_DEVICE_ATTITUDE_STATUS (#285, 0x11D)

See GIMBAL_DEVICE_ATTITUDE_STATUS.

Emission of this message with 4 Hz can be activated in the GUI with the Mavlink Gimbal Stream parameter. The yaw angle is relative to the forward direction. The message stream is always broadcast.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_AUTOPILOT_STATE_FOR_GIMBAL_DEVICE (#286, 0x11E)

See AUTOPILOT_STATE_FOR_GIMBAL_DEVICE.

This message can be send to the STorM32 controller and is then used for STorM32-Link.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PROTOCOL_VERSION (#300, 0x12C)

See PROTOCOL_VERSION.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_TUNNEL (#385, 0x181)

See TUNNEL.

The STorM32 controller occupies the block of payload_type values from 200 - 209 (see MAV_TUNNEL_PAYLOAD_TYPE). The payload types 200 and 201 are used for communicating with the GUI. Payload types 202 and 203 are for communicating with a flight controller, but can also be used otherwise.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STORM32_GIMBAL_DEVICE_STATUS (#60001, 0xEA61)

STorM32 specific message. See storm32.xml.

Emission of this message with 4 Hz can be activated in the GUI with the Mavlink Gimbal Stream parameter, can be emitted with a user defined rate by requesting a data stream with the MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL command, or by requesting a single-shot emission with the MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE command. The yaw angle is relative to the forward direction.

The 4 Hz message stream activated with Mavlink Gimbal Stream is always broadcast. The messages emitted as result of MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL or MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE commands can be broadcast or targeted, as specified by param7 in the command. When requested with MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL it holds: If a stream of targeted messages is requested, then the emission is in addition to the broadcast 4 Hz stream (if activated). If a broadcast stream is requested, it overrules the broadcast 4 Hz stream.

This allows for two streams, one broadcast stream at low rate e.g. to inform a GCS and one targeted stream at high rate e.g. to inform an on-board companion computer.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STORM32_GIMBAL_DEVICE_CONTROL (#60002, 0xEA62)

STorM32 specific message. See storm32.xml.

Not handled if in gimbal manger mode.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STORM32_GIMBAL_MANAGER_INFORMATION (#60010, 0xEA6A)

STorM32 specific message. See storm32.xml.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STORM32_GIMBAL_MANAGER_STATUS (#60011, 0xEA6B)

STorM32 specific message. See storm32.xml.

Emission of this message with 1 Hz can be activated in the GUI with the Mavlink Gimbal Stream parameter, can be emitted with a user defined rate by requesting a data stream with the MAV_CMD_SET_MESSAGE_INTERVAL command, or by requesting a single-shot emission with the MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE command.

If in gimbal manager mode and this message is received, then the STorM32 controller will fall back to gimbal device mode (only one gimbal manager is allowed per gimbal).

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STORM32_GIMBAL_MANAGER_CONTROL (#60012, 0xEA6C)

STorM32 specific message. See storm32.xml.

Only handled if in gimbal manager mode.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STORM32_GIMBAL_MANAGER_CONTROL_PITCHYAW (#60013, 0xEA6D)

STorM32 specific message. See storm32.xml.

Only handled if in gimbal manager mode.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STORM32_GIMBAL_MANAGER_CORRECT_ROLL (#60014, 0xEA6E)

STorM32 specific message. See storm32.xml.

Only handled if in gimbal manager mode.

MAVLink Camera

The MAVLink Camera component is independent on the MAVLink Gimbal component, and can also be used when the MAVLink Gimbal component is disabled.

Setting the Mavlink Camera parameter enables the MAVLink Camera component, and determines its component ID: “Camera1” corresponds to MAV_COMP_ID_CAMERA (= 100), “Camera2” to MAV_COMP_ID_CAMERA2 (= 101), and so on.

  • Mavlink Camera = “Camera1” or higher

The system ID of the MAVLink Camera component is determined by the parameter Mavlink System ID, which is also used by the MAVLink Gimbal component, and usually can be left at its default value.

The MAVLink Camera component supports the File Transfer Protocol micro service, which allows us to download the camera definition .xml files directly from the STorM32 gimbal controller.

The MAVLink Camera component is deeply related to the NT Camera. This means that it works in conjunction with the Camera Control function and associated parameters in the [GUI:Functions] tab.

Comment: For camera models which need to establish a connection to the NT Camera module for operation, such as the GoPro Hero5, the heartbeat will be emitted only when a connection is established. For these camera models the connection status is displayed in the [GUI:Dashboard].

Messages

The following MAVLink messages are supported:

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_HEARTBEAT (#0, 0x00)

See HEARTBEAT.

The emission of the heartbeat needs to be activated in the GUI via the Mavlink Camera parameter. The heartbeat is emitted at 1 Hz, with the following values:

  • type: MAV_TYPE_CAMERA (= 30)
  • autopilot: MAV_AUTOPILOT_INVALID (= 8)
  • base_mode: MAV_MODE_FLAG_SAFETY_ARMED (= 0x80)
  • custom_mode: highest bit (0x80000000) = set if prearm checks have not passed
  • system_status: MAV_STATE_ACTIVE (= 4)

The prearm check flag in the custom_mode field allows GCSes and autopilots to determine the STorM32's prearm check condition, and to act accordingly.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_REQUEST_READ (#20, 0x14)

See PARAM_REQUEST_READ.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_REQUEST_LIST (#21, 0x15)

See PARAM_REQUEST_LIST.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_VALUE (#22, 0x16)

See PARAM_VALUE.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_SET (#23, 0x17)

See PARAM_SET.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_RC_CHANNELS (#65, 0x41)

See RC_CHANNELS.

The parameter Virtual Channel Configuration needs to be set to “serial” for the values received by this message to become available for inputs as “Virtual-1” to “Virtual-16”.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_COMMAND_INT (#75, 0x4B)

See COMMAND_INT.

Same as for MAVLINK_MSG_ID_COMMAND_LONG, see next.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_COMMAND_LONG (#76, 0x4C)

See COMMAND_LONG.

Each command is acknowledged with a COMMAND_ACK message (with result MAV_RESULT_ACCEPTED or MAV_RESULT_DENIED for supported commands, and MAV_RESULT_UNSUPPORTED otherwise). The following commands are supported (parameter fields not mentioned are ignored):

MAV_CMD_DO_DIGICAM_CONFIGURE (#202, 0xCA)
* param1 = mode 
     0: CAMERA_MODE_PHOTO
     1: CAMERA_MODE_VIDEO
* param6 = command identity 
     0: command accepted by all cameras
     1-6: command accepted only if camera is CAMERA1-CAMERA6
MAV_CMD_DO_DIGICAM_CONTROL (#203, 0xCB)
* param5 = shot
     if CAMERA_MODE_PHOTO: 
         0: off
         1: SHUTTER
     if CAMERA_MODE_VIDEO
         0: VIDEOOFF
         1: VIDEOON
* param6 = command identity 
     0: command accepted by all cameras
     1-6: command accepted only if camera is CAMERA1-CAMERA6
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE (#512, 0x0200)
* param1 = message ID of the requested message  
     147: send BATTERY_STATUS message
     148: send AUTOPILOT_VERSION message
     253: send STATUSTEXT message with firmware and board type information
     259: send CAMERA_INFORMATION message
     260: send CAMERA_SETTINGS message
     261: send STORAGE_INFORMATION message
     262: send CAMERA_CAPTURE_STATUS message
     263: (CAMERA_IMAGE_CAPTURED) returns COMMAND_ACK with MAV_CMD_ACK_DENIED
     300: send PROTOCOL_VERSION message
* param7 = response target
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_PROTOCOL_VERSION (#519, 0x0207)
  send PROTOCOL_VERSION message (still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_AUTOPILOT_CAPABILITIES (#520, 0x0208)
  send AUTOPILOT_VERSION message (still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_CAMERA_INFORMATION (#521, 0x0209)
* param1 = request camera capabilities
     1: send CAMERA_INFORMATION message
(still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_CAMERA_SETTINGS (#522, 0x020A)
  send CAMERA_SETTINGS message (still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_STORAGE_INFORMATION (#525, 0x020D)
  send STORAGE_INFORMATION message (still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_STORAGE_FORMAT (#526, 0x020E)
  returns COMMAND_ACK with MAV_CMD_ACK_DENIED
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_CAMERA_CAPTURE_STATUS (#527, 0x020F)
  send CAMERA_CAPTURE_STATUS message (still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_RESET_CAMERA_SETTINGS (#529, 0x0211)
* param1 = reset (must be 0, else denied)
MAV_CMD_SET_CAMERA_MODE (#530, 0x0212)
* param2 = camera mode
MAV_CMD_SET_CAMERA_ZOOM (#531, 0x0213)
* param1 = zoom type
* param2 = zoom level
MAV_CMD_SET_CAMERA_FOCUS (#532, 0x0214)
  returns COMMAND_ACK with MAV_CMD_ACK_DENIED
MAV_CMD_IMAGE_START_CAPTURE (#2000, 0x07D0)
* param2 = desired elapsed time between two consecutive pictures (in seconds)
* param3 = total number of images to capture
* param4 = capture sequence number starting
MAV_CMD_IMAGE_STOP_CAPTURE (#2001, 0x07D18)
  stops capturing images
MAV_CMD_REQUEST_CAMERA_IMAGE_CAPTURE (#2002, 0x07D2)
  returns COMMAND_ACK with MAV_CMD_ACK_DENIED (still supported, but is deprecated, use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead)
MAV_CMD_VIDEO_START_CAPTURE (#2500, 0x09C4)
* param1 = video stream ID 
* param2 = frequency CAMERA_CAPTURE_STATUS messages should be sent while recording
MAV_CMD_VIDEO_STOP_CAPTURE (#2501, 0x09C5)
* param1 = video stream ID
MAV_CMD_DO_SEND_BANNER (#42428, 0xA5BC)
  send STATUSTEXT messages with banner

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_COMMAND_ACK (#77, 0x4D)

See COMMAND_ACK.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_FILE_TRANSFER_PROTOCOL (#110, 0x6E)

See FILE_TRANSFER_PROTOCOL.

The opcodes TerminateSession, ResetSessions, ListDirectory, OpenFileRO, ReadFile and CalcFileCRC32 are supported.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_BATTERY_STATUS (#147, 0x93)

See BATTERY_STATUS.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_AUTOPILOT_VERSION (#148, 0x94)

See AUTOPILOT_VERSION.

The flight_sw_version and board_version fields are set to the firmware version and board revision, VID and PID are set to 0x16D0 and 0x0FCB, respectively, and UID is set to the STM32 UUID.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_AUTOPILOT_VERSION_REQUEST (#183, 0xB7)

ArduPilot specific message. See AUTOPILOT_VERSION_REQUEST.

Is supported, but better use MAV_CMD_REQUEST_MESSAGE instead.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STATUSTEXT (#253, 0xFD)

See STATUSTEXT.

This message is sent out after a PARAM_REQUEST_LIST has been served, and provides firmware and board type information.

Emission of this message with a user-supplied text can also be triggered through a script using the SENDMAVTEXT script command.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_CAMERA_INFORMATION (#259, 0x103)

See CAMERA_INFORMATION.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_CAMERA_SETTINGS (#260, 0x104)

See CAMERA_SETTINGS.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_STORAGE_INFORMATION (#261, 0x105)

See STORAGE_INFORMATION.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_CAMERA_CAPTURE_STATUS (#262, 0x106)

See CAMERA_CAPTURE_STATUS.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_CAMERA_IMAGE_CAPTURED (#263, 0x107)

See CAMERA_IMAGE_CAPTURED.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PROTOCOL_VERSION (#300, 0x12C)

See PROTOCOL_VERSION.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_EXT_REQUEST_READ (#320, 0x140)

See PARAM_EXT_REQUEST_READ.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_EXT_REQUEST_LIST (#321, 0x141)

See PARAM_EXT_REQUEST_LIST.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_EXT_VALUE (#322, 0x142)

See PARAM_EXT_VALUE.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_EXT_SET (#323, 0x143)

See PARAM_EXT_SET.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_PARAM_EXT_ACK (#324, 0x144)

See PARAM_EXT_ACK.

MAVLINK_MSG_ID_TUNNEL (#385, 0x181)

See TUNNEL.

The STorM32 controller occupies the block of payload_type values from 200 - 209 (see MAV_TUNNEL_PAYLOAD_TYPE). The MAVLink Camera component supports the payload types 200 and 201 for communicating with the GUI. Payload types 204 and 205 are used for NT Camera implementations on a companion.

Comments on Compatibility

The STorM32's MAVLink support fully embraces the MAVLink standard, as defined by the original MAVLink project (common.xml and also ardupilotmega.xml) (the firmware author tries his best to make it as compliant as possible).

However, some flight stacks do not support all messages of the MAVLink standard, or do implement some of them differently/incorrectly.

ArduPilot

ArduPilot does not route some relevant messages of the standard MAVLink message set, or routes them with stripped of extension fields. This leads to enhanced traffic, especially also on wireless/telemetry links. Also, some functions of the STorM32 controller which are based on the standard MAVLink message set, such as the MAVLink camera micro service or passthrough configuration or STorM32-Link, will not work properly as some messages are not routed. In addition, since version 4.0, ArduPilot has introduced two serious bugs in handling the "old" gimbal MAVLink messages.

Generally, ArduPilot's handling of the "old" gimbal MAVLink messages and commands has its issues, and varies with version. It is best to explore the situation carefully for the ArduPilot version in use.

The STorM32 controller cannot easily work around ArduPilot's behavior, so it does not and simply follows the MAVLink standard. Thus, you will find that many functions will work just perfectly fine with ArduPilot, but also that some may not work properly.

PX4

TBD.