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Arduino, Xbee, GPS, GSM - DIY home made tracking

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by growe19, Apr 18, 2013.

  1. growe19

    Apr 10, 2013
    Likes Received:
    I've created this thread instead of posting in Jakethedog's 'tracking device' thread. This thread is more related to DIY home made tracking using Arduino.

    After my own issue of almost having lost my Phantom I'm thinking of making some kind of tracking device. My personal requirement would not be to know everything at all times, only when required.

    With this being a DIY project I will be keeping a log of all the parts used, how to make it, code used etc so if anyone else should want to build the same then they can. With this in mind I thought I'd see what the general preference was for how it sould work.

    The main thinking:
    Must be cheaper than any devices on the market
    Make sure it has no monthly charges associated with it if possible
    Make sure it has very low power consumption
    Make sure it doesn't weigh loads

    At the moment I can see two possible options/ideas:

    #1 Arudino with Xbee setup
    Arduino + Xbee + GPS on Phantom. Sending lat/long data with miniumum 1 mile range to receiver Arduino + Xbee to display on an LCD.

    When required the lat/long information could then be input into a device/computer to pin point where the Phantom had fallen for recovery.

    This option is likely to be expensive in my opinion because of the two Arduino and two Xbee setup. Plus if the Phantom goes out of the 1 mile range then you've still lost it as it won't be sending anything to you! Maybe get the 6 mile range Xbee but that'll be more.

    #2 Arudino with GPS and GSM/3G setup
    Arduino + GPS + GSM/3G on Phantom. Because the GSM/3G shield would have a mobile SIM card in it the idea behind this concept is that if the Phantom is lost you could ping the device to SMS you back it's location. Something simple like WHERERU to the Phantom cell/mobile number.

    When the SMS is sent back it could include a link to a Google map which could be instantly launched on your smart phone to show the location for Phantom recovery.

    This option is probably cheaper on parts. But requires the device to have a mobile connection when lost and also a sim card. The sim card is likely to involve its own costs with a mobile provider, but in the UK these can be very cheap these days.

    What I'll be building:
    At the moment I think I'll be building option #2 unless there is some input from the community with other ideas and concepts which would be more practical.

    Let me know what you guys think.
  2. insatiable

    Apr 11, 2013
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    You really have a great idea there! Please keep us posted.
  3. Eik


    Mar 26, 2013
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    I'll follow this project closely, so keep us updated ;)
  4. Sac D

    Mar 3, 2013
    Likes Received:
    Northern California
    Yes! We are interested. :eek:
  5. Jakethedog

    Apr 13, 2013
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    Wow that sounds great . Although I'm still a cave man I don't understand a lot of the workings but I am very excited to hear and see the project so please keep us updated and if it works you can use the saying so easy a cave man can do it . I wish we didn't have to do this but I personally afraid to fly mine with out being to track it , I want to just fly and not worry about runaways but I am very thankful for people such as yourself that can figure these things out thank you
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