3-axis BLDC Camera Gimbal with Image Tracking

Who we are, and what we decided to make:

We are a group of 5 students from the University of Victoria, in Victoria, BC, Canada. We are all part of a team called UVic AERO, seen here https://uvicaero.com/. UVic AERO is student engineering organization dedicated to the design and deployment of aircraft and payloads for aeronautical reconnaissance operations and competitions. In 2016, AERO built a camera gimbal for image stabilization and capture. At the time, only the mechanical design was completed, and was based on brushless DC motors. An off-the-shelf hobbyist control solution was purchased. While the system worked, it lacked several desirable features. In 2017, a system failure prompted the exploration of pursuing an in-house control solution. At this point, we are doing this project both for AERO, and as our final year design project.

The system is running FreeRTOS on an STM32F303RE, and includes 3 DRV8313 motor drivers, as well as I2C interfaces for motor encoders and 9 axis IMU breakout boards. Additionally, the system hosts a 12V, 5V, and 3V DCDC converters, all powered from up to a 6S LiPo Battery.

The firmware can be found here:


The hardware PCB can be found here:


The photo above is a render of a 2 axis gimbal on our drone, which will need to be updated to a 3 axis render in the future.

Our goal is to have the PCB made, and all surface mount components populated by PCBWAY.

We hope that PCBWAY likes our project enough to sponsor it.

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Jun 17,2019
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