Application | Synchronised multi-drone management and control with UgCS Commander

UgCS: Flight Planning & Control
October 3, 2022

UgCS Commander: Manage multiple UAVs

Drones are capable of automating many tasks that would be very tedious or expensive to solve otherwise. However, one of the main limitations is time. A single drone can in general be expected to fly for only about 20 minutes before it needs to return to have the battery changed. Could multiple drones be used simultaneously to get around it? This is exactly the problem UgCS Commander is designed to solve.


UgCS Commander is a simple yet powerful tool designed to simultaneously manage multiple UAVs on automated missions. It works alongside normal UgCS installation and supports most popular drones including DJI as well as other manufacturers and drones based on ArduPilot or PX4 platform. Any drone supported by UgCS can be also used with UgCS Commander.

How does it work?

The operator plans multiple routes in UgCS, each for a separate vehicle. In UgCS Commander the operator then assigns each route to a connected drone. Commander allows uploading and starting these routes simultaneously.

Drone connection to UgCS Commander works in the same way it does for normal UgCS: DJI drones are connected using an Android device running UgCS for DJI, other drones are connected either via radio datalinks or other means (Wi-Fi, etc.).

During the flight, it’s important to be able to view telemetry information from all vehicles. UgCS Commander displays this in a convenient dashboard so that the operator always knows the most critical drone parameters such as battery level, altitude, and speed.

Figure 1. UgCS Commander interface

In the meantime, all drones can be monitored in the 3D environment of UgCS. Proximity warnings are issued in case two drones get too close to one another. Each drone can be set to pause (hold) and continue its mission when required. UgCS Commander also enables the operator to return the drones back home at any point or simply land them when they have completed their mission.

Figure 2. Two drones flying simultaneously in UgCS

Applications

UgCS Commander can be used in any industry where it’s desirable to have multiple drones flying simultaneously. Some of the applications include:

  • Perimeter security
    Testing Anti-drone systems protecting airports, industrial objects, and other critical infrastructure by simultaneously sending drones from different directions toward the protected object.
  • Agriculture
    Simultaneously spraying the crops in parallel using multiple drones.
  • Mapping
    Mapping large areas using multiple drones simultaneously.

Supported drones

Any drone supported by UgCS can be also used with UgCS Commander.
Refer to the full list of supported drones »»»

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is training needed?

A: If you are familiar with using standard UgCS software, no training is required. We do offer live sessions with one of our engineers to guide you through getting started.


Q: Does UgCS Commander have a separate license?

A: Yes, it has a separate license that can be purchased from us directly. Please reach out to the UgCS team.


Q: Can DJI drones be used alongside non-DJI drones?

A: Yes, any drones supported by UgCS can be used together with UgCS Commander.


Q: How does the connection to the drones work?

A: DJI drones are connected through the remote controller and mobile device running UgCS for the DJI app. Once it’s on the same network as the computer running UgCS, the drone will appear on the UgCS screen.


Q: Can we control drones directly outside of automated missions?

A: You can take over manual control at any point or issue Hold / Continue, Land, Disarm, Return Home commands from UgCS Commander.


Q: What happens if a drone loses signal during flight or the battery goes too low?

A: The drone will behave according to standard failsafe settings configured.


Q: Is anything else required besides the computer and drones?

A: For DJI drones it’s highly recommended to have a dedicated 5 GHz Wi-Fi router that is used by the computer and mobile devices. Additionally, it’s recommended to have an external screen / second laptop available to be able to have both - UgCS and UgCS Commander windows open side-by-side.

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