Code architecture - Overview



Install ROS acording to your distribuiton:

ROS Instalation page can be found here.

Setup your catkin workspace:

sudo apt install python-catkin-tools

Create a workspace folder

mkdir -p <your_workspace_path>/src
cd <your_workspace_path>
catkin build

GeographicLib dependencies:

sudo apt-get install libgeographic-dev
sudo apt-get install geographiclib-tools

Run the script in:


NOTE: It’s recommended too add a SSH key to your gitlab account.

Start by cloning and compiling this repository

cd <your_workspace_path>/src
git clone
cd heifu
git submodule update --init --recursive
catkin build

Source Your Workspace:

echo 'source <your_workspace_path>/devel/setup.bash' >> ~/.bashrc
source ~/.bashrc

Installation (detailed overview)

ROS packages dependences: * gazebo-ros * mavros here * mavlink * geographic-msgs * tf2-eigen * control-toolbox * ros_utils here * GNSS_utils here

GeographicLib dependeces:

sudo apt-get install libgeographic-dev
sudo apt-get install geographiclib-tools

Run the script in:

Compile this directory in your ROS workspace.

Then copy the already configured files to the mavros directory:

cd ${YOUR_ROS_WORKSPACE}/src/heifu/heifu_scripts_firmware
cp apm_config.yaml $(rospack find mavros)/launch/
cp apm.launch $(rospack find mavros)/launch/
cp node.launch $(rospack find mavros)/launch/

NOTE: Adjust the yaml loader script to deal with the argument substitution in the roslaunch of yaml files:

cd ${YOUR_ROS_WORKSPACE}/src/heifu/heifu_scripts_firmware
cp /opt/ros/melodic/lib/python2.7/dist-packages/roslaunch/

Dont forget to add gimbal and mavros to the source folder and run catkin build

To run the nodes with a real drone:

Just launch - Heifu_bringup

roslaunch heifu_bringup heifu_bringup.launch

Launch Input arguments:

argSafety # Activates the safety zone mode and run the node heifu_safety.
argTakeOffAltitude # Defines the Takeoff altitude.
argSim # Activates the simulation mode. Loads Gazebo and a pre-configured world with the drone HEIFU.
argSecredas # Activates the Secredas Usecases. (Needs extra packages secredas).
argUseCase # Defines witch usecase of Secredas will be loaded.
argPlanners # Loads the Planners nodes with static colision avoidance (Needs extra packages Planners).

HELP - How to get going

roslaunch heifu-bringup heifu_bringup.launch argVehicle:="heifu" argID:=0 argSimulation:=false

Package description

GCS Interface: Interface for converting commands and information from and to a remote control station, respectively.

Waypoint Manager: Reads mission files from the UAV and sends them to the respective nodes. Allows following a mission in guided mode.

GNSS Utils: Auxiliary to the Waypoints manager package. Converts global coordinates to local coordinates.

Planners: Responsible for finding a collision-free path to the desired waypoint.

Collision Avoidance: Deals with the information from the perception sensors and ensures the safety of the UAV.

Priority Manager: Receives all setpoints from the respective packages. Responsible for managing the priorities of each package, sending always the command with the highest priority to the navigation controller.

Mavros Commands: Responsible for general flight commands handling, such as takeoff, land, and mode changes.

Navigation Controller: Responsible for controlling and completing given waypoints. Can be used with position setpoints or velocity setpoints. Guarantees that the requested position is achieved. Can receive a velocity bypass setpoint.

Mavros: Responsible for the comunication between ROS and the flight


Heifu Simulation

First make sure that the ArduPilot firmware is correctly installed, by following the steps described here.

To open the simulation:

1st terminal - Launch Heifu_bringup

roslaunch heifu_bringup heifu_bringup.launch argSim:=true

2nd terminal - Launch ArduPilot firmware

cd ~/ardupilot/ArduCopter/ -v ArduCopter -f gazebo-heifu -I1

3rd terminal - Launch Client Interface (Only to work on Beyond Skyline app)

cd ~/heifu_ws/src/heifu/heifu_interface

To load Multples drones in simulation: 1st terminal - Launch Heifu_bringup

where that arguments must be unique: - DRONE_NAME: Drone namespace - DRONE_NUMBER: Drone ID number to simulated firmware (must be the same value launched in ArduPilot Firmware argument “-I”) - LOCAL_POSITION_X: Local position X that the drone will be spawned in meters - LOCAL_POSITION_Y: Local position Y that the drone will be spawned in meters

Run Gazebo first:

roslaunch heifu_description gazebo.launch

Script to launch a drone in simulation:

cd ~/heifu_ws/src/heifu/scripts

Without script:

roslaunch heifu_bringup heifu_bringup.launch argSim:=true argNamespace:=DRONE_NAME argID:=DRONE_NUMBER xi:=LOCAL_POSITION_X yi:=LOCAL_POSITION_Y gazebo:=false

2nd terminal - Launch ArduPilot firmware The argument -I must be the same DRONE_NUMBER

cd ~/ardupilot/ArduCopter/ -v ArduCopter -f gazebo-heifu -IDRONE_NUMBER

3rd terminal - Launch Client Interface The argument DRONE_NAME must be the same on Heifu_bringup

cd ~/heifu_ws/src/heifu/heifu_interface

Example to 2 drones in simulation: Launch Gazebo:

roslaunch heifu_description gazebo.launch

Launch drone 1: 1st terminal - Launch Heifu_bringup DRONE 1

roslaunch heifu_bringup heifu_bringup.launch argSim:=true argNamespace:=heifu argID:=1 xi:=10 yi:=5 gazebo:=false

2nd terminal - Launch ArduPilot firmware DRONE 1

cd ~/ardupilot/ArduCopter/ -v ArduCopter -f gazebo-heifu -I1

3rd terminal - Launch Client Interface DRONE 1

cd ~/heifu_ws/src/heifu/heifu_interface
python heifu

Launch drone 2: 1st terminal - Launch Heifu_bringup DRONE 2

roslaunch heifu_bringup heifu_bringup.launch argSim:=true argNamespace:=valk argID:=2 xi:=-10 yi:=-5 gazebo:=false

2nd terminal - Launch ArduPilot firmware DRONE 2

cd ~/ardupilot/ArduCopter/ -v ArduCopter -f gazebo-heifu -I2

3rd terminal - Launch Client Interface DRONE 2

cd ~/heifu_ws/src/heifu/heifu_interface
python valk

Heifu Bringup

Responsible for load all packages.

Heifu Description

This package contains the drone robot HEIFU and the worlds for the simulation.

Heifu Diagnostic

Responsible for verify the GPS fix state of the drone and send the information to the application.



Heifu Interface

This package is the bridge between the ROS and the application.




Heifu Mavros

This is the main package to control the drone. Responsible for message conversions and commands between the packages and the mavros node.




Heifu Msgs

This package contain the messages and services necessary to work.

Heifu Safety

If loaded, this package controls the flight area and velocity limit of the drone to a safety real demonstration.




  • /heifu/EnableSafetyFence (heifu_msgs/EnableSafety)

Heifu Simple Waypoint

This package receive a setpoint and make the drone fly pointed to desired position.



Heifu Tools

Responsible for convert the velocity command messages.