Flying a Drone with an Oculus Rift 

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Controlling autonomous vehicles remotely with the use of virtual reality headsets seems like an obvious next step. Already, a few UAV companies have begun experimenting with these types of ideas by integrating Oculus Rift developer kits into their hovering quadcopters and drones. Parrot released a video on their blog showing that they developed a head-tracking system for their Bebop Drone in an effort to bring FPV flights to fruition. It looks like a lot of fun and we want to try one of these out asap!

As for technical specifications, they can be found in the YouTube description of the video embedded below. A quick glance showed that the operating system is based on Android and uses WiFi to connect the handheld tablet to the autonomous vehicle floating above. The range is a whopping 2km, giving plenty of freedom to explore. Moving one’s head swivels the attached camera giving a more immersive flying experience.

This isn’t the first example of FPV drones that we have seen. Previously, we covered an Oculus Rift + Head Tracking setup and another similar integration with a Black Armor Drone. We are bound to see virtual reality equipment used to control drones more and more as developers get their hands on cutting edge hardware like the Oculus developer kit 2 hardware which is currently shipping.

 

15 thoughts on “Flying a Drone with an Oculus Rift 

  1. This is what my next project is about. I am building the quadcopter now and will be buying the DK2 soon and somehow implement this. Everything is not clear yet how it will go about but I will figure it out.

    1. I am running a drone and dk1 and dk2. I have found that the image quality is not as good as a home made fpv setup.

      I am using a transporter3d from the kick starter.

    1. No not yet. It’s in the works though. Be a good citizen and ignore ignorant, unjust laws. It’s the American way, or used to be at least. Too many sissies these days cause everyone to get run over.

    1. Really dumb thing to be calling a hobby quadcopter, isn’t it? The use of that word is at least partly to blame for the BS regulations about to be in place, and nearly 100% to blame for the poor public opinion. Why the hell use that word? A RC quadcopter is not a friggin drone. I can’t believe the word is used on this site. Anytime I hear the word used I automatically assume I’m talking to a tard, and one who likes to see people’s toys taken from them.

        1. It is. “Retard” as used colloquially refers not one with physical mental disabilities but rather to those who willing refuse to think or learn. They retard themselves. Stop being one by nitpicking well-known general usage on the auspices of political correctness.

          Drone, on the other hand, implies some degree of autonomy. Calling RC quadcotpers drones is unfair at best, ignorant fearmongering at worst.

          RC quadcopters are just extremely advanced kites with powered propellers instead of passive nylon wings and radio instead of string. Are kites drones? Should we ban kites for the public good? After all, someone might fly one into an electric line or crash one into a small child in the park. Think of the children. The FAA needs to step in and protect the public from these terror-ifying drones.

  2. 1994 – “Hey man, that’s a cool RC plane you’re flying.”
    2014 – “It’s a Drone! RUN FOR YOU LIVES!”

    Funny thing is, I have yet to see a drone anywhere.
    I’ll accept UAV (Unmanned aerial vehicle) because yes, technically there is no one on board, even if it’s controls are ‘manned.’ But that’s simply because it helps to differentate between planes and ground based RC (remote controlled) vehicles. Of course, then you get RC boats…. doesn’t the media currently refer to them as torpedoes? If they don’t yet, they will soon.

    1. UAV is also not a great name to associate with RC vehicles, since it can also stand for “Underwater Autonomous Vehicle” or “Unmanned Autonomous Vehicle.” In either case, autonomous vehicles are definitely scarier, and more dangerous than RC ones.

  3. Drone works for me. Generic. Quadcopter means nothing to most people. Once the FAA released their verdict, you will likely need a certificate to fly this beyond line of sight. So keep the FPV in view and you’re ok. Probably a good thing, since these things can kill people. I have scars to prove it.

    1. “Probably a good thing, since these things can kill people”

      It would take some serious effort to kill someone with a 450 or smaller quadcopter. Give me a break. The regulations are complete bull. Anything sinister, or accidental that you could do with a quadcopter is already covered by existing laws. The FAA sticking their noses in is ridiculous, and really pisses me off. The FAA should have absolutely 0 input in the situation, provided you are not flying in restricted airspace or over 400 feet. (existing laws, remember?)

      BTW, they are criminalizing FPV even if the model is in line of sight. You have to be looking AT the model to fly, according to their bullcrap, which is partly to blame on the retarded (see post above if that offends you) use of the word drone.

      1. A lot of people don’t know the difference between a UAV (drone or Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) with a First Person View system and one that is recording video without that person’s consent, so I suspect that if serious attempts to change or delay the implementation of these undesirable rule changes, they may take it as a viloation of their right to privacy, or something similar.

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