Help me pick out a system for an ROV

Hi, this is my first post here and could definitely use some help.

I am very interested in building an ROV with my high school club and need to figure out the best way to do the electronics.

ROV’s generally run off 12vdc bilge pump motors. I need a way to control them with variable speed. I was thinking using standard rc grade electronic speed controllers. That way i could use a standard servo controller software. Also, i need some servos to bee hooked up for manipulators, valves and anything i want to put on the rov. Everything will be connected to a laptop via an umbilical and i can control the rov from there.

Could this easily be achieved with the mini maestro 12 channel servo controller and the stock software? I really do not want to get into programming anything, unless its very simple (do to my lack of programming knowledge)

Here is the essential functions that the system should carry out:

There are 2 thrusters (one on each side of the rov) and i have to be able to enable them together both forward and backwards together, as well as individually (for turning). I need 1 central thruster with both forward and backward functions to go up and down and servo(s) for air release.

Also, how hard is it to hook up a compass to one of the channels intakes, and relay that info back to the computer.

Do i need to do a bunch of programming or can i just use the stock software?

Thanks in advance.


The Maestro controls servos with standard RC hobby servo pulses. Any ESC that relies on a similar interface can be controlled by the Maestro. The Maestro control center would let you drag slider bars to control the pulses going to your ESCs.

I don’t know what your threshold is for “a bunch of programming.” For example, we have Arduino code for our compass module, but it probably won’t do exactly what you want.

- Ryan