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MAVLink: The Communication Protocol for UAVs

Updated: Dec 22, 2022

The MAV Link protocol is a communication protocol used by small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones to exchange data with ground control stations and other systems. It was developed by the nonprofit organization MAV Link to provide a standard way for UAVs to communicate with each other and with ground control systems.



MAV Link is a lightweight protocol that uses a binary serialization format to transmit data efficiently over small-bandwidth links. It is designed to be used in resource-constrained environments, such as on small UAVs or in remote locations with limited connectivity.

The MAV Link protocol supports a wide range of data types and message types, including telemetry data, status updates, and commands. It also includes support for system health monitoring, error reporting, and other critical functions.

One of the key advantages of MAV Link is its extensibility. It allows developers to add new message types and data fields as needed, making it easy to incorporate new features and capabilities into UAV systems.

MAV Link is used by a wide range of UAV systems, including commercial drones, military drones, and research UAVs. It is also used by ground control systems, such as mission planning software and payload management systems.

Overall, the MAV Link protocol is an important tool for enabling communication and coordination between UAVs and ground control systems. It plays a vital role in the operation and development of UAV technology.

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