Saturday, August 22, 2015

Sparkfun ITG-3200 Gyro

This is an impulse buy, plain and certain. Last night, I was puzzling around how r/c helicopters are able to maintain a certain attitude with only a 3 axis gyro.

Now with a helicopter, you have the main rotor up top spinning clockwise providing you with lift. However, this causes a problem, as the torque generated by the motor will cause the body of the helicopter to spin anti-clockwise. That's the reason why most helicopters have a smaller rotor at the end - to counteract this spin.

R/c helicopters use a gyro to maintain the orientation of this tail, with the aptly named "Heading Hold" gyro. Being stupid inquisitive, I started reading up on the possibilities of creating a DIY "Heading Hold" gyro.

I was very curious, and a quick google indicated the gyro used on my mCPX BL is the Inversense ITG-3205 (nigh impossible to see in the photo below). The 3200 is a similar part, and as it was at RP Electronics, I was like... if it was used on the mcpx bl, it means it's good enough for experimenting with!

Now as with all impulse buys, I didn't check the spec sheets comparing the itg3200 to what I _already_ have, the LSM9DS0. But to be honest, I'm not exactly sure what to pick up. Now that I have got my headers all soldered into my mcus, I'm ready to rock me some programming!

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