Mayday will automatically eject your parachute in case of a failure!
The Mayday Parachute Failsafe is used to automaticaly eject a parachute in case of a drone malfunction. The Mayday is primarly made for agile multicopters, at this time it's not clear if it's suitable for fixed wing systems. The device uses a IMU (inertial measurement unit) and barometric sensor to detect if the drone is falling, or flipping. The Mayday responds quickly to a failure and will eject the parachute typically after falling just 15 ft.
Much of the information to suport the Mayday can be found at Maydayboards.com. The Mayday comes with a quick start instructions that is usefull for setting up the Mayday for use.
The information below helps to augment this information and assist in using this device with Fruity Chutes products.
IMPORTANT - Mounting the Mayday: The Mayday board needs to be mounted with at least one of the primary axes aligned on the vertical axis. THE MAYDAY WILL NOT OPERATE CORRECTLY UNLESS MOUNTED THIS WAY!
When using the Mayday on the Skycat Phantom 4 Parachute with Mayday bundle we now include a printed wedge that can be put under the Mayday that aligns the controller. If you already have a Skycat Phantomn 4 Parachute Launcher and want to use the Mayday contact us to get the Mayday wedge.
Mayday operation: While the quick start guide included with the Mayday helps you with most operations it can be a little confusing. Here is the Interface Flow chart from Mayday boards that can help with use.
Tip: When using the Mayday and after the Parachute Deployment event you need to explicitly disarm the Mayday. Until you do this you will not be able to re-arm the Mayday or do other functions.
Note: Once the Mayday is armed the Mayday will stay armed between power cycles. You do not need to disarm and then rearm the Mayday between flights.
Calibration: When calibrating the Mayday make sure the drone is in the same orientation as in flight! You can not arm the Mayday unless calibrated. Calibration can only be initiated by applying power while pushing both buttons. Once the Mayday powers up and you see the lights flashing and you can release the buttons and the calibration will continue. At the end you will see a bright flashing green light, and then go to Idle (bright blue light). If there is a calibration error you will see the red light, and there is a seperate little red "error" light on the Mayday board near the center. Do not fly if the red error light is on.
Once calibrated no combination of button pushes for normal operation will cause you to need to recalibrate.
If you move the Mayday to a new copter be sure to recalibrate it in case the position has changed.
Fruity Chutes Firmware
Fruity Chutes has a special Mayday firmware version that allows the Mayday to be used with the Skycat parachute trigger. The stock firmware only produces the servo pulses for the time needed to move the sweep arm from one position to another. This is done to save battery power and works well for mechanical servos. However this will not work for the electronic servo switch used in the Skycat trigger or other similar devices. All these switches reley on the servo pulse sweeping from approximatly 1ms to 2ms, or back in order to operate. The momentary servo operaton causes problems for these switches. The Fruity Chutes firmware has an extra feature that allows the servo output to be on all the time so the servo switches work. The firmware also allows the use of the Mayday with a seperate Rescue Radio that can also trigger the parachute ejection.
External Rescue Radio Trigger Feature
Use the Mayday with seperate Rescue Radio: The Fruity Chutes sofware patch supports the use of the Mayday failsafe with a secondary Rescue Radio. This allows a servo output from a independent RC servo to be plugged into the Mayday power in connector. In this case the Mayday gets power from thereceiver. When armed the Mayday senses the servo signal from the receiver and monitors the servo pulse for the configured pulse width, plus or minus the set tollerance (see below), and when detected it will trigger the parachute ejection. For example, if you have your radio setup to eject the parachute at 100% right (2ms if not reversed), when the Mayday detects this pulse width it will trigger the parachute ejection. If the tolerance is +- 10% then the allowable pulse with detection is 180 - 220 ms will trigger the parachute. The detault tolerance setup for Mayday boards shipped by Fruity Chutes is +- 10%.
Setup of External Trigger Detection: Setting up an external trigger is easy. Connect your radio receiver servo channel to the Mayday power and turn on your receiver (and Mayday) and your transmitter. Set the transmitter so the servo channel is in the parachute eject position. Then do the Mayday servo position calibration procedure. During calibration the Mayday will measure the servo pulse width and save that at the external trigger pulse width.
NOTE: All Mayday controllers shipped by Fruity Chutes will have our firmware preloaded and with the servo always on option set, external trigger tollerance of +- 10%!
Update you Software: Most of the information for updating sofware is provided here: http://maydayboards.com/downloads/. In order to update firmware you need to install the Mayday PC software on your computer. To install follow the Mayday 2.1 Install Instructions here.
Fruity Chutes Firmware: Contact Fruity Chutes of you need the special versin of the Mayday software to use the Skycat trigger. We make this available only to Fruity Chutes customers.
Enable and Disable Servo "Always Always On" Feature and External Radio Trigger Tolerance
After upgrading the software, or for upgrading a Mayday you may already own, please follow the instructions below to use the Servo features:
- Connect to Mayday to your computer via a mini USB cable and start the Mayday 2.1 windows program. Make sure you are on the Main tab.
- Once connected type Ctrl+Q enable the Text command interface. This lets you send special configuration commands to the Mayday.
- In the textbox send "pwr1" to turn on servo always on or "pwr0" to turn the feature off.
- use "tolr" + value uto change tolerance of pwm signal . This sets the pulse width tolerance allowed when detecting a servo signal from a seperate rescue radio. For example "tolr100" is 10%, "tolr150" is 15%.
WARNING AND DISCLAMER
Reliable detection of a drone that is falling is a very tricky matter. Here are some things to consider when using the Mayday failsafe controller:
- - The Mayday is a backup controller that lower risk of the drone falling out of the sky, but it can not remove all risk.
- - If you fly erratically, or do sudden drops, this could trick the Mayday failsafe into thinking your drone is falling and deploy the parachute.
- - If you have a light weight drone, or one with a large drag area, the Mayday may not be able to reliably detect a fall.
- - The parachute is not effective if deployed too low to the ground. In most cases the parachute is most effective when deployed at 100ft or more. Contact Fruity Chutes for guidelines for heavier drones where the larger parachutes need more time.
- - We recommend using the Mayday controller as a backup to the Skycat Rescue Radio for maximum reliability.
Contact Fruity Chutes if you require assistance!