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Custom GPS System for Wingsuits

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I work for a government subcontractor and we design GPS tags (ie. tracking devices) for the military. I can't get into more detail without getting in trouble. I design the enclosures for the circuit boards and GPS receivers. Anyhow, we have some pretty small stuff, all custom. I've been talking to the programmers about getting a custom unit that will upload data to a CF card (2GB max.). Our systems run on 3.3VDC (downconverted from a 9V battery) and a complete unit would be about the size of a D-cell battery.

I'm debating on having some fellow engineers make some mods for me for wingsuit jumps. I'm curious if there would be a decent market for these to offset some of my costs? Anyone interested?

It would mainly provide date, time, altitude, lat., long., # of satellites, and a few other parameters every second. I may be able to sample it every 0.5 second or so.....we'll see. Data would then be taken from the CF card to your laptop. The GPS unit would have no fancy screens, however, it would contain status LED's and a on/off switch.
(c)2010 Vertical Visions. No unauthorized duplication permitted. <==For the media only

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I work an engineering job with security clearance too... It sounds interesting, but I'm curious how you think it will be ok to sell these modified units to random skydivers if you can't even name your place of employment?
www.WingsuitPhotos.com

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sounds very interesting to me, too.
what price range?
what's a CF card?

<><><><><><>
Q: "Do you think it gets boring just flying around or is there more to it?"
A: "I've never seen a bird get bored with flight and decide to start walking instead."

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I work for Electronic Warfare Associates GSI as a senior mechanical engineer.

Anyway, they would not be modified units. The design would utilize some components on existing systems like the GPS receiver and some programming. Otherwise, the circuit board, additional programming, and enclosure would be completely custom.

I'm not looking to make any money from this. I'm just seeing if everyone is happy with their Garmins, or if I can offset my costs by making 20 instead of 2.

EDIT: Price is unknown, but shouldn't exceed $200. CF = Compact Flash card. The CF option may be replaced with onboard memory to make the system smaller. We are in the design stage at this time.

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I work an engineering job with security clearance too... It sounds interesting, but I'm curious how you think it will be ok to sell these modified units to random skydivers if you can't even name your place of employment?


(c)2010 Vertical Visions. No unauthorized duplication permitted. <==For the media only

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Yeh, I'm definitely interested. Just thought that if you were using any key design elements from the standard unit that it would be hard to distribute (profit or not) to random individual - or even make own for yourself. I know I couldn't take any design elements from the stuff I work on at Lockheed and roll it into my own toy and bring it home with me. :o
www.WingsuitPhotos.com

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I am interested in top mounting something for some time. I looked a Garmin I think the brand name is . well The thought of holding my head out the door of 10 sec. pre-exit to insure signal very fun. I keep asking myself what the value of the data might be. verses spending 300-500 bucks. I am interested but not ready to throw money away. Think about how you mark way-points and is it possible to reach the G.P.S. buttons in the suit. Enough said there is a lot to think about. Cancer Chris

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I'd definately be interested. I borrowed a similar sounding box from a project at work (results here) but had to give it back :(. My one request would be to up the sample rate, the box I had was sampling at 10 samples/sec.

Gus
OutpatientsOnline.com

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Just a few thoughts ...

I am currently using the forerunner 201 for wingsuit GPS and dont really see the problem being the hardware although it would be nice to up the sampling rate.

Keeping GPS lock while in the plane is a hassle and involves perching the unit right beside a window all the way up to altitude and not really moving it from there when you put it on your wrist.

A unit integrated into a wingsuit would be more difficult to keep in an open area to hold the lock. That is unless people were willing to hang on the plane for a while as it tried to acquire a lock.

To me, the GPS tracking software does not currently meet the needs of the skydiver and seems the bigger nut to crack.
i.e. being able to 3D view the track and get more vertical speed information.

PtL.

No, Not without incident

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Quote

...
To me, the GPS tracking software does not currently meet the needs of the skydiver and seems the bigger nut to crack.
i.e. being able to 3D view the track and get more vertical speed information.

PtL.



Maybe GARtrip (www.gartrip.de) can give you the info you want. It's been a while since i've used it, but it can do speed/altitude profiles etc.
I don't think it will make a true 3d picture though.

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