New Flight Computer - Flight Commander

samtc

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Greeting:

I'd like to announce to the board a new flight computer we call the Flight Commander. This is a project I started with a good friend back in the late 90's. As usual life got in the way and we tabled it for more than a decade. Well, it has been placed on the front burner and much of the programming and design work has been completed. Our Website has launched: www.theflightcommander.com and in an effort to bring it to reality quicker we have initiated a Kickstarter Project. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Kickstarter; it is a micro funding source where you can seek funding by offering different levels of rewards to supporters. In our case, you can receive anything from a mention on our website up to 2 completed Flight Commanders and 3 expansion modules. Eric Foster at Badazz Rocketry is providing Rockets, CNC time and Anodizing services to add to the rewards. We offer a big Shout Out for Eric and his support!! (www.baddazzrocketry.com) Check out our reward levels and help us make LDRS this summer. You can find our Kickstarter Project at www.kickstarter.com/projects/1134219811/flight-commander-launch-first-modules

I have listed the features of the FC Base as well as the Expansion Modules below. Note that our expansion modules plug easily onto the FC Base.

Please contact us if you have any questions.

Thanks,

Sam & Malcolm


Flight Commander Base (FC Base):
  • Substrate: Single Printed Circuit Board; 0.062"; FR4; to fit 54mm coupler tube
  • Length: 4" with 6 mounting holes
  • Power, Onboard: 9VDC and Alternate Off-board: 12 VDC
  • Automotive temperature-rated Microcontroller
  • Communications: Onboard serial port; optional USB/RS232/Bluetooth cable
  • Live Unit Link (LUL) for reconfiguration, monitoring, and control prior to launch and after launch with optional FC RFLink
  • Instrumentation Data: All selectively loggable for later download
  • Streaming Telemetry/Control w/optional Expansion Module
  • Acceleration Measurement: +/-100g MEMS accelerometer
  • Altitude Measurement: 100k+ foot; barometric MEMS sensor
  • Outputs, High Power (OHP) 4 individually controlled
  • Flight Plans: 16 Presets, switch selectable; 16 Custom switch selectable
  • User-programmable Event Processor
  • System Monitoring: Battery voltage; E-bay temperature; OHP resistances; Armed Status
  • Arming, Multi-controlled: One pull-pin switch; Disarming overridable by Event Processor
  • Armed Status Indicator: Connector for high-brightness LED and/or high level audio beeper; Armed Status reported over LUL
  • Single/Two Stage Ignition: OHP(s) report Igniter/E-match resistance/continuity
  • Air Start: OHP(s) report Igniter/E-match resistance/continuity; Can Air Start or Abort depending on Flight Plan
  • Recovery Deployment: One- or Two-stage (Drogue then Main); OHP(s) report Igniter/E-match resistance/continuity
  • Logging Economy: Selectable logging rates for Pre-launch, In Flight, In Recovery, and Grounded
  • Unit Identification: Store and recall unit name, motor load, recovery type, and other Flight Plan data
  • Expansion Bus Connector:
Flight Commander RF Link (FC RFlink):
  • The transceivers require no user license
  • Powered by an off-board battery
  • The FC RFLink Expansion Module offers several ranges ( 1, 1, 6, or 40 mile range, optional)
  • APRS option planned (Ham license required)
Flight Commander GPS (FC GPS):
  • Processes signals from 20 satellites simultaneously
  • Proven to maintain lock to 135,000 feet MSL
  • Powered by system battery using active shutdown to conserve system power
  • On-board backup battery
  • Provides latitude, longitude, altitude, velocity, and other data
  • Data logged by FC Base or transmission over FC RFLink to ground
Flight Commander Beacon (FC Beacon):
  • As a Standalone Module, the unit uses its own battery for timing, visual, and audible signalling
  • Module engineered to conserve battery power while maintaining beeper volume
  • Extra loud beeper for maximum audible range detection
  • Multiple ultra-bright LEDs for maximum visible range detection
  • Bright-colored Safety-Orange case for best visibility at distance
  • Module is designed to remain inside the airframe or be pulled free by recovery events to maximize its visibility
Flight Commander Servo (FC Servo):
  • Drives 16 analog and digital servos, mixed
  • Servos powered using FC Servo batter
  • Can drive Fin Stabilization, Payload/Glider Release, Jettison External Motor Pod
 

samtc

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BTW, The L3 is just about ready for Paint. I am way ahead of schedule thanks to some mighty fine machining I had done. A real Badazz company!:clap:
 

samtc

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Josh, The FC Base is $399. Expansion modules will vary depending on the module. We have received a lot of interest in the GPS and RF Link. Take a look at the website. We are also running the Kickstarter project to speed things up and to keep the costs down. It's a lot cheaper to buy components in 100's than in 10's and 20's. Let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks, Sam
 

samtc

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Thought I'd give you all an update on The Fight Commander. Even though our Kickstarter did not fund; we are still working hard to make LDRS with Flight Commanders in hand. Malcolm has about 1/3 of the traces done on the PCB but has commented that the hard part begins now. We are hoping to have a prototype to fly at the June launch in Orangeburg, SC.

More updates soon!

Thanks, Sam
 
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