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Feb 14, 2015, 01:36 PM
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out0f0rder's Avatar
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New Product

tBeacon: UHF beacon with GPS connection, VOICE messaging and REMOTE activation


Hi, guys,

Let me introduce you to my little project called tBeacon.
This is UHF lost model locator/radio beacon. Simple, but with a lot of advantages

Enough of words let see some pics:








And here is a quick video demo

tBeacon quick demo (0 min 45 sec)


I hope most of questions is already answered by the pics and video, but just to summarize, here is the feature list of the tBeacon:
  • learning GPS position of craft from onboard or dedicated GPS receiver or telemetry;
  • activation via call from UHF handheld radio or by timer;
  • transmitting voice with GPS position among classical beacon beeps;
  • charging the beacon's battery while flying;
  • easy configuration and calibration with PC app;
  • size 19x15mm. Weight: ~2g. (overall weight is mosly determined by a used battery).

All the info, manual, downloads, link to purchase, etc, are on the product page: http://tbeacon.org/

Discuss?

P.S.: English isnít my first language, so please excuse any mistakes. I'm working on it and I'll appreciate any corrections.
Last edited by out0f0rder; Feb 21, 2015 at 03:29 AM.
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Feb 14, 2015, 03:19 PM
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Hugeone's Avatar
Clic "like"

-Hugo
Feb 14, 2015, 05:38 PM
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schumixmd's Avatar
Cool. Finally something that talks to you when you're alone in the field
Is the voice synthesized or recorded? Can you change the pitch of the voice?
How powerful is the transmission? Will it swamp UHF receiver onboard?
Feb 14, 2015, 11:18 PM
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out0f0rder's Avatar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schumixmd View Post
Cool. Finally something that talks to you when you're alone in the field
I'm afraid everyone will avoid talking to an emergency beacon

Quote:
Originally Posted by schumixmd View Post
Is the voice synthesized or recorded? Can you change the pitch of the voice?
How powerful is the transmission? Will it swamp UHF receiver onboard?
The voice is recorded. The pitch is not changeable currently, but I'm planning of adding a parameter of voice tempo.
Actually it was an unexpected problem finding good english samples of ICAO phonetic alphabet. I'm not very satisfied with the current one. Russian samples is way better IMO (you can watch it here).
RF transmission power is 100mW. It will not interfere with LRS, just because the beacon will not transmit anything until it's activated by your call
Feb 15, 2015, 03:58 AM
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schumixmd's Avatar
Well, one more thing to be added to configurator is recorded voice so one can load own samples, and it will be almost perfect!
Transmitting also Altitude, Speed and course will make it even better. This is usefull if you lost contact with the plane inflight, and want to know if it is returning back, or crashed.
Feb 15, 2015, 11:11 AM
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out0f0rder's Avatar
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schumixmd View Post
Well, one more thing to be added to configurator is recorded voice so one can load own samples, and it will be almost perfect!
Unfortunately that's not that easy. Preparing samples for the beacon is not so straightforward, it's a complex and not formalized process yet.
But I'm open to suggestions and willing to add some nice voice...
Preferably a sexy female voice, of course

Quote:
Originally Posted by schumixmd View Post
Transmitting also Altitude, Speed and course will make it even better. This is usefull if you lost contact with the plane inflight, and want to know if it is returning back, or crashed.
That's a nice idea! Thanks!
Transmitting extra voice is battery hungry, and I don't think it is wise to waste the battery for not emergency critical info. But adding some marker word, like "moving" could be nice!
Got the idea, added to TODO list
Mar 27, 2015, 01:29 PM
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VA6DX
488's Avatar
Great job! Looking forward to more development on this project.

Bear
Mar 27, 2015, 02:25 PM
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just4funxwing's Avatar
Neat!
Mar 27, 2015, 07:32 PM
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great project
Mar 28, 2015, 01:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by out0f0rder View Post
But I'm open to suggestions and willing to add some nice voice...
Preferably a sexy female voice, of course
Maybe use the "Amber" voice pack that we have for the Taranis?
Mar 28, 2015, 01:28 AM
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out0f0rder's Avatar
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Originally Posted by Inverted1 View Post
Maybe use the "Amber" voice pack that we have for the Taranis?
Thanks for the hint, I'm going to check it!
The most important my requirement is using ICAO phonetic alphabet.
Otherwise it is very hard to distinguish between "five" and "nine" in congested air.
Mar 28, 2015, 08:12 PM
Registered User
Interesting, but at 100mw UHF, the range will be relatively short when the aircraft is on the ground.
Mar 28, 2015, 10:06 PM
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VA6DX
488's Avatar
I've used lower powered UHF beacons using a small yagi. With the beacon antenna laying on the ground in the tall grass and surrounded by heavy brush and hilly terrain, got a fix on the beacon as far as 3 kms out. When the beacon was 1 meter above the ground in the exact same terrain, 12 kims out.

Bear
Mar 29, 2015, 11:09 AM
Registered User
Are you planning on releasing something new or updated soon?
Mar 29, 2015, 12:17 PM
UB9ALF
out0f0rder's Avatar
Thread OP
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahtiram View Post
Are you planning on releasing something new or updated soon?
1. New firmware with bunch of cool features. Of course, fully compatible with existing hardware.
Very soon (weeks or so).
2. Daughterboard for tBeacon with buzzer and bright LED.
Several weeks.
3. New model of tBeacon. It is designed specifically for racing mini quads.
No schedule yet, as it's in early research stage. But the prototype already saved my mini twice


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