Discussion in 'Rocketry Electronics and Software' started by Adrian A, Aug 28, 2017.
Not sure anything would protect it from that.
It sounds like the EggFinder patch might be similar to the another tracker that I had in the past in that the antenna is sensitive to "hard hits". I had two of the other tracker some years ago that I sheared the antenna off even with the shrink wrap on them. One from only hitting after a deployment on the pad.
The Featherweight Tracker is soldered on 5 pads per side (and I can't confirm right now but it may have underneath ground pads soldered as well... Adrian would know that one). At BALLS last year, I had a prototype (so flow soldered in a skillet by Adrian - likely less than the professional quality now) that went to 17k ft and came in fast on a drogue (the main jammed). it hit hard enough to break the metal tip off the fiberglass nose cone and broke the antenna off the tracker, but the GPS and radio were still working. And that was again a prototype that was not as 'trim' as the current units. As Eric said Adrian said, "it probably doesn't hurt" - but I can say these are more solid in that area than the ones I flew in the past.
As an aside, I have a version of FIP with some stability improvements as well as being able to record the packets it receives. I want a user to be able to play them back (as if the rocket is flying now) but also be able to share them (send them / post them / download them / play them). I also figure the flight recordings will be a good way for me to work on voice... So far though, the recordings are in phone 'purgatory'... I can verify they are in the phone but now I have to learn how to transfer them... ....
Nice. I was just wondering about where you are with new features.
Is this the “log file” feature for recording the path or is this just for replaying the iPhone display as it was during flight? I’m guessing it’s all the same data though?
it actually saves the raw BLE packets as well as a date/time stamp so then I can do pretty much whatever I want with them. I did forget to mention this version also handles the 'found rocket' case where a rocket in the air can pick up a rocket on the ground out of LoRa range and send back it's coordinates. the found rockets show up on a separate page of 'found rockets' that you can select and decide to 'track to'. ultimately I'd like you to be able to 'share' (via air drop or message or email) the last location of any rocket your phone knows about - as well as share the flight data.
Hi Kevin, I'm aware of at least two different ways to get files off, I have no idea how the APIs work for them however, only that I've used apps that do it.
First off, there must be some truly Apple-approved way, if you look at the phone in iTunes when its connected you should see a "File Sharing" selection on the left bar. When I click on this I see several apps on my phone that can send & receive files this way.
Second, the bowling score tracking app I use (PinPal) has a backup function, which apparently just runs a webserver. So when you click on Backup/Restore in the app it tells you the URL to enter (it uses a high port number, like 56000+), and when I browse to that page it has download and upload functions.
So if you just want to present (and possibly accept) files the former is probably the easiest as I'd assume there's a built-in API for the iTunes access, the latter probably just integrates a webserver into the app, but since you get to create your own html you could have more control over how data is presented I'd think.
I'd like to get the share (up arrow thing) to be able to send the data to any destination (be it air drop or email or message). That way at the field, someone with a 'found rocket' packet could easily share it with the person who has the lost rocket - and then that person can walk to the location. I'll get there I'm sure - just need some googling... .
Ahhh.... never seen one up close. It would be interesting to see how it would do with a secondary LoRa radio receiver with a higher gain antennae using a broader spreading factor. My guess is any LoRa capable modem running 915 MHz would pull data from it -
When charging the ground station via a charging cable. Does the LED do anything to let you know it is finished charging? It appears to only light up (white) when plugged in.
I had a successful failure with this tracker today. My minimum diameter 54mm on a L990 went to 20,500ft and landed over 1.5 miles away. The base station lost signal shortly before it landed, but picked it back up as we approached.
I say failure because a quick link failed and I lost the booster.
I would have never got back the altimeter, payload section, nosecone and most importantly Fruity Chute if it wasn’t for the Featherweight.
The light on my base station goes off after a full charge is reached.
Flew my tracker for the second time today. The flight went to 8,200 feet, and landed about 7,500 feet away. Once again, the tracker guided me right to the rocket.
I have not timed how long it takes, but it does take a while for the 2 amp hour batteries to charge. The light should go off when it's charged.
4 flights at AIRFest on the Featherweight GPS. 8K', 14.4K', 24.4K' and 35K'. Perfect tracking on all. Distance of 2.5-6 miles for recovery. Easiest tracking I have done. Thanks!
I had 3 successful FW GPS flights (4K to 8K), walked right up to all 3. I put in my order for a second transmitter and picked up the 38mm nosecone sled/mount from Chris Bender at AIFFest.
Two of the FW flights also included a Comm Spec tracker as a backup. I did noticed a much reduced range on the Comm Spec on those two flights. The battery was fresh in the transmitter and the receiver battery was good. I had the two trackers attached to the same shock cord within a foot of each other. Not sure if there was interference between the two systems? I will have to do some testing. But my confidence in the FW system is solid, so I may not include a Comm Spec anymore.
I took several screenshots of the tracker app while my rocket was going up. Pretty cool.
Coming up for air...
In August my day job suddenly had 3 projects that deserved full-time attention from me, plus 2 other projects, so I had to tune out of the forum and Featherweight product development for a while. My most intense project is done for now, so I'll be a little more available. The good news for you guys is that that project had enough cross-over with the Featherweight GPS that I made some software progress that will be applicable to the Featherweight GPS. For example, I got to test recovery of a LoRa unit floating in the ocean, over the horizon from a chartered boat, using a Featherweight GPS tracker in a high-altitude helium balloon as a relay that was 10s of miles away. This was a slightly modified version of the the lost rocket advanced feature. On-board logging and downloading of high speed data were part of that project as well. So those advanced features are pretty close to being available.
Thanks for the update Adrian. Don't work too hard.
Thanks for the update! I'm really enjoying the product
Any progress on the android version of the app?
Had three good flights at BALLS, the tracking system performed perfectly. All rockets landed more than a mile away (average was about 8,000' from the pad) and I had a good track all the way down. The rockets were all easily recovered as they were very near the reported GPS coordinates. The flights were to 14,500', 19,500', and 20,500'. It was very cool to track the flights using the iOS app. Unfortunately I only remembered to screen record one of the flights. The tracker easily fit into the nosecone of a 38mm CF Mongoose (14,500' on a CTI J150 - the nosecone was fiberglass.)
I'm very pleased with the results.
Any progress on Android support?
sorry; between my day job and working on getting recorded flights and such for iOS, I haven't started on the Android port. I'll be looking into a "develop once - deploy to both" environment but am always skeptical of those...
for < $100 you can get a device with a touch screen user interface to our existing trackers... not bad since you can also play angry birds on the same device... it would be a used iPhone on eBay... . [I used to be Windows only - got in to Mac/Apple mostly for the tracker... now I do both but haven't programmed for the Android yet...]
So what's the minimum hardware requirement to run the iOS app?
I would look for hardware that supports iOS 10 or higher. I have a 9.* device that works and one that certainly won't work for the advanced features ... I would go for an iPhone 5c as a cheapish interface. I actually like the small size of it compared to the bigger iPhone that I have that is a sore topic... (long story). any way, if you see an option available, find the model number and google for the iOS version that it supports - or contact me to help..
Thanks for the recommendation. I see many in Ebay. What's your recommendation for storage (8, 16 or 32)? My plan would be to use it as a Wifi only device. Do you see any problems with this approach?
Not so fast....If this product is Part 15 approved as a license free device, you can operate it without an Amateur Radio license. Just because it uses a license free band, one also shared with Licensed user's on the Ham band, it is not automatically capable of license-free automation. Its not to say you would not get away with it, but the Manufacturer can be seriously bitch-slapped by the FCC if HE says its license free, so I would not put words in his mouth. Hey, its ten bucks, a 4th grade-level multiple-guess test, and a couple hours of your time to get the ARS license, so don't commit crimes when the risk is substantially greater than the benefit.
Allen - I'm not sure which tracking device you are talking about but the Featherweight tracker requires no HAM license. It is using FCC certified hardware for both the LoRa and BlueTooth on appropriate public bands. "Buying on eBay" refers to buying an old iPhone that works as the interface until such time as we get around to the Android version... I was just joking when it was talking about "device" because some are adverse to Apple products so they should just buy it as a user interface - yes that happens to be an apple product...
Separate names with a comma.