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Old Nov 03, 2010, 01:12 PM
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Vista, CA
Joined Jan 2004
209 Posts
I have developed a set of hardware that works with the Sky Navigator software on the Ipaq that should be available for about $500 - $600. That package will include everything needed to fly the task. I am still refining the system to make it as good as the $1400 hardware setup that is currently available. You can be sure I will let everyone know once I have the system working to my satisfaction. It uses off the shelf parts, but there is some programming of the various widgets involved.

For anyone who is contemplating writing their own software, I would highly encourage you to study the Sky Navigator software. It is very good and highly refined. It only runs on the Windows Mobile OS which is it's only downside that I am aware of. It was developed from the programs that are used in full size sailplanes and those are normally run on an Ipaq.

I would also encourage anyone who has the knowledge to develop smaller hardware to go in the model. The current hardware in the plane consists of a gps receiver and an air to ground transmitter to send that gps data to the ground receiver. Each widget is about the size of a small matchbox and they are connected by a 3 or 4 wire cable that can be any length necessary. The gps needs a clear view of the sky and the air to ground transmitter needs to see the pilot on the ground. They get their power from any open channel on the receiver or a Y cable.

I appears some of the European vario and receiver manufacturers may soon have systems that will talk to Sky Navigator on the Ipaq. So we may have many choices of hardware to use in the next couple of years. I certainly hope so. Flying this task with a 1/3 scale sailplane is one of the most challenging and fun things I have ever done in modeling.

Rick
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Old Nov 03, 2010, 01:43 PM
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Two Montague events - OMG

Quote:
Originally Posted by DEAN GRADWELL View Post
Ralph,
I think the interest will be there. In fact both Montague cross country contests next year will most likely will be International events.

Regards Dean
So there are going to be two events?
I must have missed something - 5 day event and ?????
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Old Nov 03, 2010, 02:06 PM
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Joined Oct 2004
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Jack,

I'm calling the GPS Triangle race a XC event also. Same tatics and decisions that we are used to heading off down the road.
I know everyone will like it.

Regards Dean
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Old Nov 03, 2010, 05:42 PM
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Oh darn!!!
I was looking forward to three trips to Shasta
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 05:04 AM
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Joined Jun 2005
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@ rshelby

I've developed a sensor board witch embed :
GPS, air speed, baro vario (very sensitive), baro alt, voltage reading, throttle PWM reading from receiver (using engine = penalties), temperature.
Data are sent in NMEA format. I send GGA and RMC plus a propriatary frame that embark all the non GPS data @ 4Hz (can be changed)

the board on the right is the radio modem (2.4Ghz)

Tests have been conducted on big birds and the terminal used is a PDA running the software that goes along :
http://glidebywire.free.fr/index.php...&id=1&Itemid=2

Flight are saved in igc format.

Next iteration coming soon :

added SDcard, sound output (to drive a 446Mhz radio)...
2.4Ghz radio board will be updated also.

I expect big rc manufacturers follow the FrSky model witch allow using a telemetry channel at will but I doubt they will open their hardware. That should allow me not using an extra radio modem. To bad the FrSky telemetry channel is too slow.
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 12:43 PM
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Ralph Weaver's Avatar
Indianapolis, IN USA
Joined Nov 2000
2,305 Posts
The Sky Navigator software looks good, the Ipaq platform is a non starter for me. Too expensive, not really useful for anything else, soon to be obsolete, hard to read in the sun.

Sending NMEA from the sky to the ground is no big deal. That can be done for $200 or less with off the shelf equipment and a little custom packaging and cabling. The trick is the software and the overall system functionality. You have to understand the application and make it easy to use in a contest.
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 12:45 PM
yyz
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USA, CA, Paso Robles
Joined Dec 2004
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Z,

What kind of distance are you getting from that radio?

BTW, we should get everyone generating IGC format files. It places more demands on the logger but it's an FAI standard and all of the full-scale planning and analysis tools (StrePla, SeeYou, etc) work with that format.

Mike


Quote:
Originally Posted by zenoid View Post
@ rshelby

I've developed a sensor board witch embed :
GPS, air speed, baro vario (very sensitive), baro alt, voltage reading, throttle PWM reading from receiver (using engine = penalties), temperature.
Data are sent in NMEA format. I send GGA and RMC plus a propriatary frame that embark all the non GPS data @ 4Hz (can be changed)

the board on the right is the radio modem (2.4Ghz)

Tests have been conducted on big birds and the terminal used is a PDA running the software that goes along :
http://glidebywire.free.fr/index.php...&id=1&Itemid=2

Flight are saved in igc format.

Next iteration coming soon :

added SDcard, sound output (to drive a 446Mhz radio)...
2.4Ghz radio board will be updated also.

I expect big rc manufacturers follow the FrSky model witch allow using a telemetry channel at will but I doubt they will open their hardware. That should allow me not using an extra radio modem. To bad the FrSky telemetry channel is too slow.
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 01:03 PM
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Beaverton, OR
Joined Apr 2002
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Course distance?

Dean,

are you planning on following the rules of having the triangle course be only 2.4KM long? (800M per leg)

- Bob -
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 02:18 PM
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Joined Oct 2004
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Bob,
Yes it will be what I believe is the standard course.
Imagine yourself standing in a field. 500m in front of you is a turnopoint, on your left 500m away is a turnpoint and the same for the right.
Starting altitude 500m max.
Glider is easy to see without having eagle eyes.
At Montague the course would be behind the hangars.

Regards Dean
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 03:39 PM
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@ YYZ

Reached more than 800 meters high with no frame lost. I've tested the radio modem (FCC one but at 100mW instead of its max 200mW) at ground level in industrial park and got about 600 meters with no LOS. I've used SeeYou and a free software to view the trace http://ywtw.de/igcsim.html

PDA sw is running
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 03:41 PM
yyz
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USA, CA, Paso Robles
Joined Dec 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zenoid View Post
@ YYZ

Reached more than 800 meters high with no frame lost. I've tested the radio modem (FCC one but at 100mW instead of its max 200mW) at ground level in industrial park and got about 600 meters with no LOS. I've used SeeYou and a free software to view the trace http://ywtw.de/igcsim.html

PDA sw is running
Fantastic! Nice work.
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 03:45 PM
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@ YYZ

max distance should be 2.4 km, manufact. specs.

PDA sw is running a speech synth. that goes along the graphic rendering. The race module allow you to automatically build a triangle race, edit each turn point...I think it's going to be very fun to play with it on the slope as each point can have an altitude and a time window. So you race horizontally and vertically.

Y.
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Old Nov 04, 2010, 04:15 PM
yyz
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USA, CA, Paso Robles
Joined Dec 2004
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zenoid View Post
@ YYZ

max distance should be 2.4 km, manufact. specs.

PDA sw is running a speech synth. that goes along the graphic rendering. The race module allow you to automatically build a triangle race, edit each turn point...I think it's going to be very fun to play with it on the slope as each point can have an altitude and a time window. So you race horizontally and vertically.

Y.
If you plan to market and sell the PDA software to the European triangle racing crowd, I would heed Rick Shelby's suggestion and take a look at the features and, in particular, the user interface of Sky Navigator.

Christoph Mächler (the author) and others have been field testing and fine tuning that UI for a number of years now so that group has a lot of sweat invested in that work.

Having said that, I really like your idea of starting with the audible (speech synthesis) user feedback which will making practicing without a helper possible.

Mike

ps: Dean, thanks for lighting the fire under all of us. This is going to be a whole new way of flying cross-country, and r/c gliders in general.
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Old Nov 05, 2010, 07:41 AM
Ueli Nyffenegger
Switzerland
Joined Nov 2010
42 Posts
Hello GPS Glider Pilots!

My name is Ueli, I`m from Switzerland, the Country GPS Triangel flying was founded by Christoph Machler. I fly together with Christoph from the beginning, have a lot of experience in organising such competitions. Next Year we have the 7th year flying GPS Triangel in Switzerland, 3rd year flying GPS Eurocup. And we are planing to have the first WC next year in Spain. We are about 50 Pilots here in Europe fyling this fascinating Glider class.
I spoke with Dean and he asked me to discuss with you in this Forum to give all the help to get this Class startet in the US. So please, if you have any question, just ask about.

regards

Ueli
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Old Nov 05, 2010, 10:55 AM
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Joined Jun 2005
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Hi Ueli,

I have one, I've read in the rules that only 433Mhz modem are allowed and the use of skyNav. Is it necessary to take part in a "GPS triangle" comp. ?
If not, what if the telemetry suit have a real sensitive vario build around barometric ic and not GPS data ?

Regards Y.
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