Engineering Design Challenge CubePilot Question

I am extremely new to drones. I really do not know much at all. I am part of a design team at my university, and this year our challenge is to launch a high-powered rocket with a payload that is capable of autonomously locating the landing position of our launch vehicle WITHOUT the use of GPS. One of our solution concepts involves deploying a drone upon landing and sending it to search for a landmark it recognizes. However, this drone would have to operate completely autonomously and completely without GPS.

I’ve been searching the internet trying to find good autopilot technology for drones, and I stumbled across CubePilot. My team thinks the platform seems really promising, but we have concerns that we haven’t been able to resolve. Specifically, could we use the CubePilot to program an autonomous flight path for the drone without adding GPS capabilities? If so, what limitations might exist? Could we just program the drone to fly in a circle or other predetermined path, or could we send it indefinitely in some direction until we tell it to stop? Any information would be greatly appreciated, and thank you for your time.

Yes. It is possible to fly without GPS, with some substitute.

You can look for the supported sensors/camera to get the position data

Or maybe go for the ROS way with SLAM/tracking camera

You can do this by writing a script. For example lua script in ardupilot, or mavlink-python/dronekit script in companion computer.