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Cell phone GPS for lost model locating

PostPosted: Sat Jun 18, 2011 1:44 pm
by Sampey
Hi i'm new here so i hope i'm not posting in the wrong place or anything..

Elsewhere online theres a few videos of various groups/people sending cameras up to about 90 000 ft on weather balloons with either parachute or glide recovery, amazing videos of the inner edge of space, google it.

Anyway for people doing this the question becomes how to recover the randomly dropped camera unit (distances of 30-100kms from the launch point are fairly average from what i've seen).
The solution many use is to place an android/iphone type cell with gps in with the camera (obviously with alot of foam for impact protection of the phone). This works in two ways, first you can download an app that allows you to text the phone and receive its GPS location in return (you then plug this into google maps and voila theres your lost model location to within a few metres, my friends iphone can pin point which room hes in in my house, so its pretty accurate). Secondly other apps can be downloaded that will plot the path of the phone (and thus the craft its in) so you can get flight path info after recovery.

I thought given the small size and relative cheapness of some of the phones that can do this, it would be most useful for backup GPS recovery info for FPV/OSD especially at range, and for those with a phone that can do this already (not that uncommon) it makes a great lost model locator that will work at fantastic ranges.
Another of my friends has a cheap phone that can apparently do this once we download the app, so we'll do some tests and update soon.

Thoughts people?

Re: Cell phone GPS for lost model locating

PostPosted: Sun Jun 19, 2011 12:33 am
by pushinoldrc
I think this is a very neat idea. I would like to hear more about it.

Re: Cell phone GPS for lost model locating

PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:03 am
by bmsweb
I've also thought of this as I often use my iPhone to track where my son's iPhone is and it works perfectly via Find iPhone App. Only problem is the size of the iPhone 4 and the weight, but having said that, my friend just picked up a new Samsung Android Phone that cost him $100 and it has GPS etc. So there are some very cheap and light alternatives out there that would be ideal for tracking your Plane if its lost. Mind you the phone is still going to need a good Data Connecting

Re: Cell phone GPS for lost model locating

PostPosted: Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:16 am
by RCModelReviews
There are quite a few GPS tracker units available from China right now that will respond to a call or SMS by sending back their current GPS coordinates. I think I've seen them for as little as US$45. This would surely be the ideal solution.

Re: Cell phone GPS for lost model locating

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 7:57 am
by Oops
I got since a few weeks a 2-hand GSM/GPRS/GPS Tracker. On the box it says: "Global Smallest GPS tracking device". It weights 68grams with backcover (which has magnets build in), 58gr without the cover and 40gr without cover and batteries (power for three days).

I need to get a sim for it. It will text a cellular when moved, when in motion, when out of a certain area and some other conditions. It will also text back when asked for. But ofcourse it needs coverage which is ok well above ground but when disapearing in undergrowth it may be a problem. (not my type of music)

Re: Cell phone GPS for lost model locating

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2011 8:17 am
by Sid Sideslip
Oops wrote:not my type of music)


(I'm a trad fiddle player, my poor ears!) :lol:

Carry on.

Neat GPS btw. :-)