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Final Year Project

Non-Intrusive Bicycle Tracker


Author:

Supervisor:

Stephan Terblanche

Dr MJ Booysen

November 3, 2014
Report submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements of the module Project(E) 448 for the degree
Baccalaureus in Engineering in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of
Stellenbosch.

Acknowledgements
The contributions from the following people were greatly appreciated throughout the project:

MTN:
The project would not have been possible without your financial support
My Family:
The continuous support from family and those close to me helped me push on during the hard times when I lost
all hope.
MJ (Thinus) Booysen:
For your guidance and support throughout the project (pressuring me to get things done)
Trinity Telecoms:
For the expensive sample and the hardware and software support
Quintis Brandt:
For ordering all the parts requested along with all the altercations.
Wynand Van Eeden:
Advice on the PCB design and assembly
PCB-POOL:
I received friendly and helpful service, with a tour of their manufacturing line.

Declaration
I, the undersigned, hereby declare that the work contained in this report is my own original work unless indicated
otherwise.
_____________________

__________________

Stephan Terblanche

Date

ii

Abstract
With the increasing crime on bicycle theft, the need for tracking and finding ones lost
property is an appealing and necessary device to have. This project investigates a solution of
placing a tracker on or within the bike. It will make use of a Sierra Wireless M2M device
using Airvantage incorporated in Trinitys SMART platform. The tracker would alert the user
when his bicycle is in transit and taking appropriate action. The device will also report speed
and a location when requested from the platform.

Uittreksel
Met die toenemende fiets diefstal is die behoefte vir die spoorsnyer van jou verlore eiendom 'n aantreklike en
nodige apparaat om te h. Hierdie projek ondersoek 'n oplossing vir die plasing van 'n spoorsnyer op of binne die
fiets. Dit sal van 'n Sierra Wireless M2M toestel gebruik maak wat met Airvantage geinkorporeer word in
TRINITY se SMART platform. Die spoorsnyer sal die gebruiker waarsku wanneer sy fiets is in beweging kom
sodat onmiddellike aksie geneem kan word, asook verslag gee op die spoed en ligging wanneer dit versoek word.

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Content

Acknowledgements .................................................................................................................... i
Declaration ................................................................................................................................ ii
Abstract .................................................................................................................................... iii
Uittreksel .................................................................................................................................. iii
Content ..................................................................................................................................... iv
List of Figures ............................................................................................................................ vi
List of Tables ............................................................................................................................. vi
List of Functional Diagrams ......................................................................................................vii
Acronyms .................................................................................................................................viii
Symbols......................................................................................................................................ix
1

Introduction........................................................................................................................ 1
1.1

Problem Statement ...................................................................................................... 1

1.2

Project Objectives and Scope ...................................................................................... 1

1.3

Constraints ................................................................................................................... 1

1.4

Report Overview .......................................................................................................... 2

Literature Review ............................................................................................................... 3


2.1

Trackers ........................................................................................................................ 3

2.2

GSM .............................................................................................................................. 3

2.3

Global Positioning System ........................................................................................... 4

2.4

SIM ............................................................................................................................... 4

2.5

Existing Solutions ......................................................................................................... 5

2.5.1

Helios .................................................................................................................... 5

2.5.2

Bikespike ............................................................................................................... 6

2.5.3

Spybike.................................................................................................................. 6

System Overview ................................................................................................................ 7


3.1

Functional Overview .................................................................................................... 7

Detailed Design .................................................................................................................. 9


4.1

Main Design ............................................................................................................... 10

4.1.1

Operating System ............................................................................................... 10

4.1.2

Powering the module: on and off ...................................................................... 10

iv

4.1.3

Antenna specifications ....................................................................................... 10

4.1.4

Serial Communication ........................................................................................ 11

4.1.5

SIM Interface ...................................................................................................... 13

4.1.6

GPS ...................................................................................................................... 14

4.1.7

Charger ............................................................................................................... 16

4.2

Backup Plan ................................................................................................................ 19

4.2.1

Microcontroller ................................................................................................... 19

4.2.2

GPS ...................................................................................................................... 21

4.2.3

Modem ............................................................................................................... 23

4.2.4

Charger ............................................................................................................... 26

Detailed PCB Design and Manufacture ............................................................................ 29


5.1

PCB Design ................................................................................................................. 29

5.2

PCB Manufacture ....................................................................................................... 29

Detailed Software Design ................................................................................................. 29


6.1

Objective .................................................................................................................... 29

6.2

Design......................................................................................................................... 29

6.2.1

Main Software Design ........................................................................................ 30

6.2.2

Backup Software Design ..................................................................................... 30

6.3

Trinity SMART Platform ............................................................................................. 31

Results .............................................................................................................................. 34

Conclusion and Recommendations .................................................................................. 34

References ........................................................................................................................ 35

Appendix A: Project Planning .................................................................................................. 37


Appendix B: Project Specification............................................................................................ 38
Appendix C: Outcome Compliance .......................................................................................... 39
Appendix D: PCB Design And Manufacture ............................................................................. 41
Appendix E: Cost of Components Used ................................................................................... 45
Appendix E: Design Figures ..................................................................................................... 48

List of Figures
Figure 1: 3GPP Family Technology Evolution [1] .................................................................... 3
Figure 2: GSM Association icon (1989) [3] ............................................................................... 4
Figure 3: USB Implementation [6] ........................................................................................... 12
Figure 4: Example of a Typical SIM Socket Implementation [6] ............................................ 13
Figure 5: GPS Implementation for 1V8 UART (UART2) with the Q2686 [10] ..................... 15
Figure 6: Figure 43. Example of an ADC Application............................................................. 18
Figure 7: Li-Ion Full Charging Waveform [6] ......................................................................... 19
Figure 8: AirlinkFX Series Modem .......................................................................................... 24
Figure 9: MAX232 Circuit Design ........................................................................................... 25
Figure 10: Switch-Mode Charger [17] ..................................................................................... 28
Figure 11: Transforms
Figure 12: Gadgets .......................................................... 32
Figure 13: Variable assigned to a Metric
Figure 14: Metric assigned to Gadget 32
Figure 15: Gadgets placed on Dashboard ................................................................................. 33
Figure 16: PCB Solder Mask Top Layer .................................................................................. 41
Figure 17: PCB Solder Mask Bottom Layer ............................................................................ 41
Figure 18: Altium Designer 3D PCB Model Top View ........................................................... 42
Figure 19: Altium Designer 3D PCB Model Bottom View ..................................................... 42
Figure 20: Manufactured PCB top view without components ................................................. 43
Figure 21: Manufactured PCB top view with components ...................................................... 43
Figure 22: Manufactured PCB bottom view without components ........................................... 44
Figure 23: Manufactured PCB bottom view with components ................................................ 44
Figure 24: Backup Plan, RS-232 to TTL converter.................................................................. 48
Figure 25: Backup Plan, Complete Setup................................................................................. 48
Figure 26: Main Design Full Setup .......................................................................................... 49

List of Tables
Table 1: Table 27. Antenna Specifications ............................................................................... 11
Table 2: AirPrime XM0110 GPS module specifications ........................................................ 14
Table 3: NTC Thermistor specifications and ADC circuit values ........................................... 18
Table 4: Important Microcontroller Properties ......................................................................... 19
Table 5: Required Microcontroller Properties .......................................................................... 20
Table 6: Arduino UNO Specifications [12] .............................................................................. 20
Table 7: GPS Protocol Parameters ........................................................................................... 22
Table 8: Charger Settings Setup ............................................................................................... 27
Table 9: Software function and description .............................................................................. 30
Table 10: Data on trinity platform agreeing to that sent from the device ................................ 34
Table 11: Project Planning ....................................................................................................... 37
vi

List of Functional Diagrams


Functional Diagram 1: Functional overview of the design ........................................................ 8
Functional Diagram 2: Functional Overview ............................................................................. 8
Functional Diagram 3: Battery Charging Diagram [10] ........................................................... 17
Functional Diagram 4: MCU and GPS ..................................................................................... 23
Functional Diagram 5: MCU and Modem ................................................................................ 24
Functional Diagram 6: SMART Platform Builder ................................................................... 32

vii

Acronyms
API Application Program Inteface
CSN Chip Select Not
DC Direct Current
GPRS General Packet Radio Services
GSM Global System For Mobile Communications
GUI Graphical User Interface
IC Integrated Circuit
IO Input Output
Mbps Megabits Per Second
MHz Mega Hertz
M2M Machine to Machine
PCB Printed Circuit Board
RF Radio Frequency
Rx Receiver
SCL Clock Line
SDA Data Line
SPI Serial Peripheral Interface
SRM Successive Renement Model
Tx Transmitter
UART Universal Asynchronous Receiver/Transmitter
W Watt

viii

Symbols
I Current
m Meter
P Power
Q Charge
R Resistance
V Voltage

ix

Introduction

In light of the increasing theft of bicycles, a way to track and recover a stolen bicycle is a very
comforting assurance. Successful recovery requires that the tracking device be inconspicuous
to the culprit. This can be done by placing the device out of sight within common areas of the
bike: seat; handlebars; taillight; or within the frame of the bike itself. The location in which
the device is placed needs to be considered carefully since the device receives signals for
communication and location information from antennas that need a clear view of the sky.

1.1

Problem Statement

There are not many tracking devices on the market which are suited for a bicycle. The
solutions available are complicated to install, costly and not inconspicuous, therefore I will
design a bicycle tracker which satisfies the requirements of being uncomplicated to install,
affordable and inconspicuous.

1.2

Project Objectives and Scope

The objective of this project is to design, manufacture and test a tracking device for a bicycle
that is non-intrusive and able to report on location and speed. The device should make use of
a GPRS modem connecting to the Sierra Wireless Airvantage API that Trinity SMART
platform uses. The SMART platform provides a web-based GUI (dashboard) which needs
only a compatible browser and the internet in order to access the data. The location of the
device should be obtained from a GPS. The non-intrusive bicycle tracker will be a viable
design if the following criteria are met:

1.3

GPRS Communication between the device and the Airvantage Platform


Accurate location and speed measurements
A working dashboard showing bicycle location and speed
Non-intrusive design
Power efficient

Constraints

This section outlines the different factors which will influence the projects priorities and
restrictions. Factors to keep in mind with regard to system design:

Cost: The smaller the design, the more complicated and therefore more expensive
Time: The large size of the project will cause to process to take longer
Software: There are many functions, commands and a complicated setup
Hardware: Functionality, size and power must work together to create a functioning
whole
Complexity: The large number of components and programming environments
increases the complexity of the design

The factors above identify the following as constraints for the project

1.4

Budget: The project budget is R1500.00 + R2500.00 received from the sponsors
(MTN and Trinity) for the project
Time: The Date of completion is 3 November 2014 at 12:00pm
Size: The device should be small, making it a complicated and costly design

Report Overview

Chapter one is an introduction of the problem and a proposed solution. Chapter 2 two is used
to provide background knowledge of the project as well as of existing solutions. Chapter three
is a functional overview of the proposed solution. Chapter four describes the hardware
research and design of the individual components in detail. Chapter five describes detailed
PCB design and manufacturing. Chapter six describes the detailed software and Trinity
SMART platform design. Chapter seven shows the results of the design operation. Chapter
eight discusses the conclusion and recommendations for the project.

Literature Review

This sections aim is to analyse examples and other similar devices relating to the bicycle
tracker in order to gain insight about the project and possible solutions.
2.1

Trackers

A tracker is a device which uses a GPS to provide the location of said device and to transfer
this data to another device via different forms of wireless communication. This can be done
with GPRS, Bluetooth, WiFi or NFC. The use of GPRS is the most common and effective
solution as GPRS is widely available.
2.2

GSM

Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) is a family of technologies used


worldwide. GSM is widely used throughout the world and therefore the most popular wireless
technology to use. GSM became the fastest growing wireless technology; it took just 12 years
to grow to a user base of 1 billion. GSM is the legacy network that fuelled the evolution to the
third generation (3G) technologies, UMTS and HSDPA. This is commonly referred to as the
GSM family of technologies. Figure 1 represents the evolution from 2G GSM and GPRS to
3G Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution (EDGE), UMTS and HSDPA [1].
A Legacy network is the generic name given to a network that is based on old and outdated
protocols, e.g. a legacy network would be something like SNA that is still used among the
widespread use of TCP/IP [2].

Figure 1: 3GPP Family Technology Evolution [1]

Three of the dots in Figure 2 symbolize the three clients in the home network and the fourth
dot represents one roaming client [3].

Figure 2: GSM Association icon (1989) [3]

2.3

Global Positioning System

Global Position System is a United States-owned system primarily used for the military. The
system provides users with timing, navigation, and positioning information. The GPS system
consists of three separate segments, namely the space-, control-, and user segment.
The space segment of the GPS consists of a constellation of satellites which transmit radio
signals to the users. Satellites fly in medium Earth orbit at an altitude of approximately 20 000
km, circulating the Earth twice a day. [4]
The GPS control segment is a global network of ground facilities which keep track of all the
GPS satellites, monitor transmission, perform analysis and update all the GPS satellites in the
constellation. The control segment has multiple tracking and monitoring stations throughout
the globe. [4]

The GPS user segment has many different applications it can be applied to. It boosts
productivity, saves lives and contributes to other advances in science regarding weather
forecasting, earthquake monitoring and environmental protection.[4]

2.4

SIM

A subscriber identity module or Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) is an integrated


circuit which securely stores the International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) and the
related key which is used to identify and authenticate subscribers on mobile telephony devices
(such as mobile phones and computers) [5].

The SIM circuit is embedded in a plastic card and this is called a, SIM card. The SIM card can
be swapped between different mobile devices. The SIM card, originally full-size, was the size
of a credit card, but as devices became smaller, so did the SIM. The full-size SIM was
followed by mini-, micro-, and nano SIM. The next step is SIMs embedded in devices as seen
in recent Apple products.
The embedded SIM or e-SIM, is a surface mount SON-8 package soldered directly onto the
circuit board of the device. The e-SIM has the same functionality as that of a normal SIM,
with the advantage of having a more compact design. This is great for M2M applications
where no SIM changes are needed, eliminating the unnecessary space needed for a SIM
connector, improving reliability and security [5].

2.5

Existing Solutions

Below is a list of available solutions to the potential problems named above in section 1.3.

2.5.1 Helios

The Helios tracker is a complete handlebar that one can buy. This fits onto most bikes. Within
these handlebars is a GPS with a Bluetooth and GSM module. The location is reported with
an SMS sent to ones cell phone. Other features that communicate with a smartphone
application are included in this package.
Advantages

Weather proof
Easy instalment
Sleek design

Disadvantages

Battery life is very short (duration)


Expensive (cost)

Specifications

Brightness: 500 lumens

Battery: Lithium Ion


Battery Life (250 lm): 20 hours
Battery Life (500 lm): 9 hours
Material: Reinforced Aluminium
Weight: 610 - 810 g
Width: 420 mm
Stem: 1 1/8"
Weather Proof

2.5.2 Bikespike

Bikespike is a GPS tracker which is housed inside the water bottle holder which is simply
attached to the frame of the bike. Bikespike offers various options of accessing the location
as well as other useful functions.
Advantages

Stolen bike recovery and tamper detection


Gives ride stats
Crash detection
Always on broadcast

Disadvantages

User has to sign up plus monthly charge for data and service

2.5.3 Spybike

Spybike is a GPS tracker which fits inside the steering column of the bike. The GPS tracker
uses a GSM module and notifies the user by SMS. 29 September 2014
Advantages

Inconspicuous design. It appears as a regular headset cap.


Tamper detection
Location report with GSM as fall back if GPS fails
Easy to install
Pay as you go service
Device battery life lasts for months when not activated

System Overview

3.1

Functional Overview

The Functional overview is a representation of the whole system seen in flow diagram 1. The
flow diagram serves to give a clear understanding of the flow and directions of information of
the multiple logical subsections.

Input: The input section illustrates all the raw data is received from the GPS.
Processing: The processing section illustrates that only the necessary data is filtered
from the raw data and the MCU determines the data ready for output.
Output: The output section illustrates the various output types the device has. Data
travel via the modem to the web-platform and tracking information is saved to the
secondary storage.
Channel: The channel section illustrates data transmission between the modem and
web-server via the currently available GSM network.
User Interface: The user interface section illustrates the information interpreted by the
user from the data which is provided to the web-sever.

Input

GPS

Processing

Output

Microcontroller

Modem

Channel

User
Interface

GSM
Network

Web-Server

Functional Diagram 1: Functional overview of the design

Detailed Design

For the project, I was supplied with a Sierra Wireless Fastrax Extend GSM module from
Trinity. The module is a Sierra Wireless modem with an ARM processor which can run a
custom program on top of the Open AT firmware. This firmware communicates with AT
commands via TTL RS-232. This device was unfortunately too large for the intended purpose
of fitting onto the bicycle inconspicuously.
According to the project objective, the GPS tracker needs to interface with the Airvantage
platform on the SMART Trinity website. Because the Fastrax Extend modem did not meet the
requirements, an alternative solution had to be found.
My supervisor and I contacted Trinity and it was agreed that I could use a system which does
not have the Airvantage platform in the device firmware, as long as the GSM device
supported the following:

TCP stack
AT commands
GSM/GPRS
Frequency Band of 850/900/1800/1900
SIM interface: SIM socket(1.8v/3v)

I found GSM modules which met the necessary specifications needed to interface with
Trinitys platform. However, I found it difficult getting the necessary support from the Trinity
development team. I realized that it would become too time-consuming with unnecessary
difficulties with regard to implementing a cross interface between Trinity and Airvantage
platform. Instead, I opted for another Sierra Wireless product with the supported firmware to
connect to their platform.
The following design in chapter 5.1 was done as the main design. Since the design required a
lot of research, component acquisition and PCB design and manufacture, a lot of time went
into this design, not allowing spare time for software debugging or hardware problems. The
chosen module unfortunately got bricked during a firmware update just before application
design. I had to take the risk of either waiting for another module or start to work on a
backup-plan. A replacement part was ordered but it was decided to start working on the
backup plan, section 5.2, which meets the requirements stated in chapter 1.2. The backup
design worked well, but unfortunately time didnt allow for completion of the main design.

4.1

Main Design

I chose the Sierra Wireless AirPrime Q2686 wireless module as a single product design,
modem and microcontroller unit (MCU). The module supports quad-band 2G connectivity up
to EDGE and advanced software capabilities which are powered by an ARM946 processor.
The firmware on the processor supports the Open AT Application Framework, the worlds
most comprehensive cellular development environment which allows embedded standard
ANSI C applications to be natively executed directly on the embedded module [6].
The module provides the following interfacing capabilities:

Digital section running under 2.8V and 1.8V


3V/1V8 SIM interface
Complete Interfacing:
Power supply
Serial link
Analog audio
PCM digital audio
SIM card
Keyboard
USB 2.0 slave
Serial LCD (not available with AT commands)Modules

4.1.1 Operating System


The Operating System supports a real time clock (RTC), battery charger and full GSM or
GSM/GPRS operating system stack. The module offers three RF connection choices: UFL
connector; precidip; and a solder connection. For baseband signals an industrial grade 100-pin
board-to-board connector is used to connect to the customers design for access to the
provided interfaces.
4.1.2 Powering the module: on and off
The Q2686 module can be turned ON or OFF by providing a voltage 0.8 x VBATT for a
minimum of 1500ms. The signal can be left high until switched of but is not recommended
since if the battery runs below the minimum rated voltage the device cant automatically
power off and cause harm to the battery and/or device[6]. To switch off, the ON/~OFF signal
must be set low and AT+CPOF must be sent to the device. The device will respond with
OK and will then be turned off successfully.
4.1.3 Antenna specifications
The required antenna specification is shown in Table 1, although a VSWR of 1.5:1 for both
the RX and TX bands are required an antenna with a maximum VSWR of 2:1 will fulfil the
required specifications [6].

10

Table 1: Table 27. Antenna Specifications

Characteristic

E-GSM 900

TX Frequency

880
915 MHz
925
960 MHz
50

RX Frequency
Impedance
VSWR

RX max

1.5:1

TX max

1.5:1

Typical Radiated Gain

DCS 1800
to 1710 to 1785
MHz
to 1805
to 1880 MHz

GSM 850

PCS 1900

824
to 1850
to
849 MHz
1910 MHz
869
to 1930
to
894 MHz
1990 MHz

0dBi in one direction at least

4.1.4 Serial Communication


4.1.4.1 Objective
The objective of this section is to research and design a serial interface for communication
with the AirPrime embedded module, allowing for programming and debugging of the
module.
4.1.4.2 Research

The Q26 module allows for RS-232 or UBS serial communication to a PC for the
programming of custom applications and firmware upgrades. Advice from the Sierra Wireless
forums pointed out that, in the case of firmware upgrades, USB saves a lot of time when
uploading programs and especially when doing firmware upgrades [7]. The USB 2.0 interface
is 3.3V type, with up to 12 Mbits/s full-speed transfer rate. Since the refreshed embedded
module line (VPAD-USB) is 3.3V type, a voltage regulator is required for the 5V to 3.3V
conversion from the external 5V line of the USB.
As devices become faster and smaller, their sensitivity to electro static discharge (ESD)
increases. In order to ensure that electrical and electronic products are safe from possible ESD
damage, necessary ESD protection needs to be put in place to conform to IEC 61340-5-1
approval. The IEC sets the following standards: IEC61000-4-2 (ESD) 15kV for air and
8kV for contact discharge.
To protect devices against ESD, transient voltage suppressor diodes (TVS) must be used on
all signal lines that are connected to the external interfaces. TVS diodes with low capacitance
(less than 10pF) have to be connected on SIM-CLK and SIM-IO signals to avoid any
disturbance occurring on the rising and falling edge [6].

11

4.1.4.3 Design

The diode D1, STF202, is a combination EMI filter and line-termination-device with
integrated TVS diodes for use on upstream USB ports. The device provides termination,
filtering, and ESD protection for the USB port. The diode provides ESD protection for the
USB power (VBUS) and the data lines (D+ and D-). The USB data lines operate at high
speeds therefore a diode with low capacitance is required. This ensures that the signal
integrity is preserved since high capacitance can cause signal distortion [8].
The design can be seen in Figure 3 with the diode for line-termination and ESD protection on
the USB line and the voltage regulator needed for the 3.3V supply.

Figure 3: USB Implementation [6]

12

4.1.5 SIM Interface


4.1.5.1 Research

The SIM card socket has 3 data lines that are low-speed, and one low-voltage line. Given the
low speed of the signals, the capacitance is not of major concern. The low-voltage line is best
protected by a device with a low standoff voltage (VRM) [9].

4.1.5.2 Design

The diode D1: ESDA6V1SC6, from ST Components, provides ESD protection by clamping
unwanted overvoltage. The diode has a VRM of 5.25V and a very low capacitance of 190pF.
Diode D2: ALC208SC6, from ST Microelectronics, is used to protect the data lines of the
SIM against any overvoltage caused by the ESD. The diode provides no signal distortion due
to a low capacitance of less than 5pF. Both diodes provide ESD protection against air and
contact discharge.

Figure 4: Example of a Typical SIM Socket Implementation [6]

13

4.1.6 GPS
4.1.6.1 Objective

The Objective of this section is to research and implement a GPS system to interface with the
Q2686 module.
4.1.6.2 Research

During the research of the AirPrime Q series range, a location solution was identified. The
AirPrime XM0110 GPS module was specifically designed by Sierra Wireless to offer the
easiest and most optimized GPS feature integration with AirPrime Intelligent Embedded
Modules. Sierra Wireless provides a location library to be used with the developer studio.
This requires minimal setup for implementing location in the customers applications. The
firmware running on the XM0110 is downloaded from the host software (AirPrime Q series)
on every first power-up and is retained in the RAM until power-off or reset, since the GPS
does not have any non-volatile memory [10].
The GPS module requires no external hardware to operate with the AirPrime module since all
power supply lines and serial links are provided by the AirPrime model. The only optional
hardware choice is whether to use the internal linear noise amplifier (LNA) or an external
linear amplifier. I chose the internal LNA since the gain provided by the internal LNA was
more than sufficient for the required use, and the low gain mode operation is only supported
when using the internal LNA. The GPS module specifications can be seen in Table 2.

Table 2: AirPrime XM0110 GPS module specifications

GPS Features

Interfaces

GPS L1 frequency (1575.42 MHz)


48 tracking channels, 400,000 correlators
SBAS (WAAS/EGNOS) support.
-163 dBm tracking sensitivity
-161 dBm navigation sensitivity
-146 dBm autonomous acquisition sensitivity
Active In-Band jammer up to 80dB/Hz removers
1V8 to 5V25 power supply
ON/OFF control input (max VBATT voltage input)
2-wire serial link (UART or I2C) host interface
1V8 Digital I/Os (3V6 tolerant input)
Host interface Select input
Wake-Up input
Pulse-Per-Second output
External LNA or antenna supply Enable output
32.768kHz clock input

14

Size

Length:12.5 mm

Width: 10.0mm

Thickness:2.5mm Weight: < 0.6 g

4.1.6.3 Design

The GPS was connected to the AirPrime model via a 2-wire UART interface for serial
communication. The I/O type for the TX and RX signals is 1.8V, this allows the lines to be
directly connected to the UART2 line of the Q2686. The device is waked up when
communication is detected on the RX line by directly connecting the RX line to the
WAKE_UP pin. The GPS is turned on or off by driving the ON/~OFF pin by a 1.8V GPIO
pin from the AirPrime embedded module, GPIO21 was used. The internal LNA is used;
therefore the external enable pin (EXT_LNA_EN) can be left unconnected. A 100uF low ESR
decoupling capacitor was placed close to the VBATT input to minimize any ripple voltage, to
ensure that LDO output-level is within the GPS functional voltage range. The GPS interface
with the AirPrime module is shown in Figure 5.

Figure 5: GPS Implementation for 1V8 UART (UART2) with the Q2686 [10]

15

4.1.7 Charger
4.1.7.1 Objective

The Q2686 module supports a battery charging circuit using, two algorythms and one
hardware charging mode, pre-charging, for charging Nickel-Cadium (Ni-Cd), Nickel-Metal
Hydride (Ni-MH) and Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion). The battery charging circuit is composed of a
transistor switch which connects the CHG-IN signal to the VBATT signal. The switch is then
controlled by a charging algorithm. Algorithm 0 is used for Ni-Cd and Ni-MH type batteries,
while algorithm 1 is used for Li-Ion. For the battery charging functionality you need the
following:

Charger power supply A DC current power supply limited to 800mA and with a
voltage range corresponding to the maximum battery and Q2686 specifications.
Analog Temperature Sensor Only used for Li-Ion batteries to monitor their
temperature.

I chose a Li-Ion battery since they are compact and had one available for use. It was used in a
Nokia phone with the following battery specifications; 3.7V, 1500mAh, 5.6Wh. The battery
had a protection circuit module (PCM) required by the module for necessary protection
against overcharging, over-discharging and over-drain. This is to prevent the Li-Ion battery
pack from exploding, firing and damage. The temperature sensor interface is used with Li-Ion
battery charging to monitoring the battery temperature ensuring safe charging conditions.

16

Functional Diagram 3: Battery Charging Diagram [10]

4.1.7.2 Research

The Q2686 module uses temperature sensing during charging algorithm 1. This requires
additional hardware to provide an analog voltage to the AirPrime embedded module. The
temperature is measured with the use of negative temperature coefficient (NTC) thermistors.
The NTC thermistor is thermally sensitive resistor whose resistance decreases with increasing
temperature. The temperature resistance characteristic is defined by the relation between the
zero power resistance and the temperature. R (T) is the resistance at any temperature and R
(25C) is the resistance at room temperature. The calculation of the temperature is done for a
specific temperature range since the resistance change is not linear. The constant used is
called the sensitivity index (B), the calculation of the constant is done with the formula below
with T1 at room temperature and T2 at the desired end range in kelvin, and measuring the
resistance at each [11].
( )
(

4.1.7.3 Design

The VCC_2_8 voltage provided by die Q2686 is used to polarize the NTC thermistor.
Resistors R1 and R2 is used to adjust the maximum voltage of 2V needed by the ADC input
at the BAT-TEMP pin on the Q2686. The maximum temperature I want to the battery to get is
50C. The resistance for R1 was chosen first and R2 was then calculated to ensure a maximum
output of 2V.

17

Table 3: NTC Thermistor specifications and ADC circuit values

R (25C) 100 k
R (50C) 34.3 k
4120 K
R1
4.7 k
R2
17.87 k

Figure 6: Figure 43. Example of an ADC Application

( )
( )

( )
( )

)
)

( ()
)
( ()
)
(

4.1.7.4 Charging Algorithm

The Li-Ion charging algorithm makes use of temperature monitoring to prevent battery
damage during the charging phase. The algorithm is broken down in three phases:
1. Pulse charge (beginning) The charge consists of an alternating pulse, 1 second on
with a 100ms rest.
2. Constant current charge This is when the battery reaches a set voltage
(DedicatedVoltStart).
3. End of pulse charge This is when the rest period is longer because the voltage has
exceeded BattLevelMax during the rest period.
If the battery voltage is between 2.8V and 3.2V, a pre-charging period is applied to the battery
by supplying a constant current of 50mA. This prevents the battery from dropping below the
specified minimum battery level. If a lower voltage than 2.8V the PCM might disconnect the
cells from the terminal and the pre-charging might not unlock the battery [6]. When the

18

battery is able to power the module, it is automatically powered on and the algorithm is then
run to fully charge the battery.

Figure 7: Li-Ion Full Charging Waveform [6]

4.2

Backup Plan

4.2.1 Microcontroller
4.2.1.1 Research

I did not do a thorough search since this is my secondary attempt at the design. I however did
inspect the various aspects needed for my design to work according to Functional Diagram 1
with the components connected to it. The common features concerning microcontrollers are
tabulated in Table 4 below. For the second part of the design I chose the microcontroller last
since I already knew the communication interface the GPS and GSM modules require, Table
5.
Table 4: Important Microcontroller Properties

Microcontroller properties
Flash Size
Frequency
USB
PWM

Pin Count
I2C
RAM Size
FPU

UART
SPI
PWM
RTC

19

Table 5: Required Microcontroller Properties

Component

Protocol

GPS

UART

Modem

UART

Secondary Storage

SPI or I2C

The requirement that immediately caused concern to me was the two UART communication
protocols that were needed. I had previous experience with the open-source solution named
Arduino, and they offer a variety of powerful prototyping boards. I already owned the
Arduino UNO but it unfortunately only features one UART communication line. I researched
other Arduino prototype boards that support 2 UART lines, but found a software solution to
the problem. The software library SoftwareSerial allows UART communication to be
assigned to available pins on the controller. I therefore opted for the UNO since it now
supports all the necessary protocols needed for commutation with all the components.
The Arduino Uno is a microcontroller board based on the ATmega328. It has 14 digital
input/output pins (of which 6 can be used as PWM outputs), 6 analog inputs, a 16 MHz
ceramic resonator, a USB connection, a power jack, an ICSP header, and a reset button [12].

Table 6: Arduino UNO Specifications [12]

Microcontroller
Operating Voltage
Input Voltage (recommended)
Input Voltage (limits)
Digital I/O Pins
Analog Input Pins
DC Current per I/O Pin
DC Current for 3.3V Pin
Flash Memory
SRAM
EEPROM
Clock Speed

ATmega328
5V
7-12V
6-20V
14 (of which 6 provide PWM output)
6
40 mA
50 mA
32 KB (ATmega328) of which 0.5 KB used by bootloader
2 KB (ATmega328)
1 KB (ATmega328)
16 MHz

4.2.1.2 Design

The microcontroller will receive its power from a 6V NiMh battery pack.

20

4.2.2 GPS
4.2.2.1 Objective

The objectives are to implement a GPS subsystem need for tracking information. The GPS
device needs to be set up on start-up and then provide continuous data to the MCU, where it is
extracted to provide time, date, velocity, position and direction.
4.2.2.2 Research

The GPS used is an off the shelf product from Itead Studio, the Arduino GPS shield v1.1. The
shield is designed as a breakout board commonly used to attach to various Arduino boards. The
Ardiuno shield uses a standalone GPS receiver from Globesat, the EB-365 IC.

The EB-365 is a compact, high performance, and low power consumption GPS engine board.
It uses SiRF Star III chipset which can track up to 20 satellites at a time and perform fast
TTFF (Time To First Fix) in weak signal environments [13]. The EB-365 is suitable for the
following applications:

Automotive navigation
Personal positioning
Fleet management
Mobile phone navigation
Marine navigation

Product Features

SiRF star III high performance GPS Chipset


Very high sensitivity (Tracking Sensitivity: -159 dBm)
Extremely fast TTFF (Time To First Fix) at low signal level
Serial port
I2C interface
4Mb flash
Built-in LNA
Compact size (16mm * 12.2 mm * 2.4mm) suitable for space-sensitive application
One size component, easy to mount on another PCB board
Support NMEA 0183 V2.3 (Output: GGA, GSA, GSV, RMC, VTG, GLL, ZDA)
Support SiRF binary protocol

21

The serial communication used is a universal protocol developed by NMEA. The National
Marine Electronics Association (NMEA) has developed a specification that defines the
interface between various pieces of marine electronic equipment. The standard permits marine
electronics to send information to computers and to other marine equipment [14].
The hardware interface for GPS units is designed to meet the NMEA requirements. They are
also compatible with most computer serial ports using RS232 protocols, however strictly
speaking the NMEA standard is not RS232. They recommend conformance to EIA-422. The
interface speed can be adjusted on some models but the NMEA standard is represented in the
table x below. Baud rates can be set to 9600 or higher for NMEA output but this is only to be
done when you have determined that the standard 4800 works correctly, this improves the
responsiveness of program applications [14].
Table 7: GPS Protocol Parameters

Baud Rate
4800 bits/b

Data Bits
8 bits

Parity
None

Stop Bits
1 bit

Handshaking
None

4.2.2.3 Design

The GPS shield is connected directly to the microcontroller via the breakout board. The
microcontroller is seen as the DTE and the GPS as the DCE. The DCE is powered directly
from the DTE and communicates via TTL (Transistor-transistor logic) with standard UART
protocol. The functional Diagram x illustrates the physical connection.

22

Arduino UNO (DTE)


Interface: TTL UART
(SS)
Configuration:
Baud Rate: 9600
Data Bits: 8
Stop Bits: 1
Handshaking: None
Power:
Battery pack 6V
750mAh

TX
RX

5V
GND

GND

2V85

RF_IN

External Active Antenna


Output Impedance: 50 Ohm
Frequency: 1575.42 MHz
Amplifier Gain: 18-22 dB
Power: 2.85V

EB -365 (DCE)
Interface: TTL UART
(SS)
Configuration:
Baud Rate: 9600
Data Bits: 8
Stop Bits: 1
Handshaking: None
Power:
5V

Functional Diagram 4: MCU and GPS

The power supply to the GPS can unfortunately not be turned off as this will need me to cut a
track on the PCB of the shield, an efficient transistor could have been implemented to turn the
device on when needed.

4.2.3 Modem
4.2.3.1 Objectives

The modem needs to be set up and be used to receive data via available GSM networks. This
allows the design to have a two way link between web-server and microcontroller.
4.2.3.2 Research

The Sierra Wireless Fastrax Extend was given to us from Trinel to connect to their SMART
platform. The modem allows users to connect to a wireless network that was already set up
for use. It uses an external SIM and offers quad band 850/900/1800/1900 MHz with class 10
GPRS capability.

23

The modem is customizable with the Sierra Wireless Software Suite which enables one to set
up custom AT commands, custom application libraries and native execution of embedded
ANSI C (American National Standards Institute for the C programming language)
applications. The modem uses the RS-232 serial interface with customizable baud rates,
handshaking, data bits and stop bits options [15]

Figure 8: AirlinkFX Series Modem

4.2.3.3 Design

The modem is seen as the DCE and obtains power directly from the battery source. The DTE
communicates with the modem via RS-232. A custom circuit was assembled for RS232
conversion. This allows voltage levels to be converted between the DTE and DCE for twoway UART communication.

Arduino UNO
(DTE)
Interface: TTL
UART
Configuration:
Baud Rate: 9600
Data Bits: 8
Stop Bits: 1
Handshaking:
None
Power:
Battery pack 6V
750mAh

TX

TX
RX

5V
GND

MAX232N
Function:
Logic level
conversion between
TTL and RS-232 for
2-way
communication

RX

Fastrax Extend
Interface: RS-232
Configuration:
Baud Rate: 9600
Data Bits: 8
Stop Bits: 1
Handshaking:
None
Power:
Batttery Supply

GND

Functional Diagram 5: MCU and Modem

24

Hardware Interface

The MAX232 is a dual driver/receiver that includes a capacitive voltage generator to supply
TIA/EIA-232-F voltage levels from a single 5-V supply. Each receiver converts TIA/EIA232-F inputs to 5-V TTL/CMOS levels [16]. The UART is set up for no handshaking mode,
thus the RTS is connected back to CTS on the RS-232 side of the module.

Figure 9: MAX232 Circuit Design

Software Communication
The Fastrax Extend modem use AT commands to communicate with the microcontroller. The
AT commands set allows for wide range of settings and functions to be performed on the
modem. The modem was set up during a workshop with Trintel to establish a network
connection with their web-server. Table x show a list of frequent AT commands, responses
and descriptions.

No

Type

Command

Description

Solicited

OK

Is received for any successful command and


should be interpreted as a confirmation.

25

Unsolicited

+AWTDA: BOOT

Shows the modem is attempting to connect


to a network.

Unsolicited

+AWTDA: UP

Shows the modem as successfully


established a network connection.

Unsolicited

+AWTDA: DN

Unsolicited

Shows the modem as just lost network


connection.
+ AWTDA: TIMEOUT Indicates that an expected response took too
long and was aborted.

Unsolicited

+CME ERROR: #

Indicates an error has occurred, the error can


be looked up from the datasheet or AT
command manual.

Solicited

AT+AWTDA?

Solicited

AT+IFC=0,0

Requests the current status of the modem either


2,
3Disables
or 4 willthe
beflow
returned
as afunction
message.
control
of the modem

Solicited

AT+CFUN=1

Manually resets the modem.

10

Solicited

AT+AWTDA=e

Triggers a numbered event.

11

Solicited

AT+AWTDA=d

Send data to the web-server.

12

Solicited

AT+AWTDA=c

Send
a
command
status
acknowledgement to the web server

and

4.2.4 Charger
4.2.4.1 Objective

The objective of this section is to build a charger interface that is allows the user to simply
plug in the device when notified of a low battery of the device.
4.2.4.2 Research
The research Ive done in section 5.1.4 shows that Li-Ion batteries is difficult to charge
needing extensive monitoring and smart charging cycles. I rather opted for NiCd or NiMH
batteries since they are cheaper, more robust, and therefore easier to charge.
4.2.4.3 Design
I opted for Maxims, MAX713 fast-charge NiCd and NiMH battery charger that can charge
one to 16 series cells, up to 4C rating. Charging completion is determined with a voltageslope detecting analog-to-digital converter, timer, and temperature window comparator. The
MAX713 is powered by a DC source via an on-board +5V shunt regulator. It draws a
maximum of 5A from the battery when not charging. A low-side current-sense resistor
allows the battery charge current to be regulated while still supplying power to the batterys
26

load. The MAX713 uses a negative voltage-slope detection scheme. When using linear power
control the power dissipation in the pass transistor requires a large heat sink for heat
dissipation, for a more compact and power efficient charger a switch-mode configuration was
chosen [17]. The number of cells and charging time can be changed by setting up PGM0PGM3 connections.
Table 8: Charger Settings Setup

Function
Set 5 cells
Charging Timeout: 90 min
84 A/D sampling interval(s)(tA)
Voltage slope termination enabled

Programming PIN
PGM0
PGM1
PGM2 and PGM3

Connection
NC
V+
V_REF

The MAX713 enters fast-charge state when power is applied to the charger with the battery
already connected. The fast-charge current is set by selecting the RSENSE value. During the
fast charge cycle the voltage difference between the battery and ground pin is regulated to
250mV. DRV current increases its sink current if this voltage difference falls below 250mV,
and decreases its sink current if the voltage difference exceeds 250mV. A 750 mA fast charge
was decided, resulting in a one hour full charge [17].
(

( )

)
(
(

)
)

( )

The power source for the DC_IN input needed was done with a safe rule of thumb [17]. The
voltage is selected as: DC_IN(min) = 1.5V + (1.9V x the maximum number of cells to be
charged). A power source with a minimum voltage of 11V was needed, a 12V DC source was
selected with a 200mA current rating.

27

Figure 10: Switch-Mode Charger [17]

28

5
5.1

Detailed PCB Design and Manufacture


PCB Design

The PCB design was done in Altium Designer version 14.3. This was my first time doing a
complete PCB design and Ive previously only experimented on the designer. This made
progress slow in the beginning but got the hang of it pretty soon. Most of the footprint designs
had to be custom made since only two footprints were available.

5.2

PCB Manufacture

The PCB designed was composed of many small footprint designs with the 100 pin board-toboard connector the smallest. The spacing between the copper pads was too small to be done
with a milling machine. The board was therefore manufactured using a chemical etching
process. The two layer PCB was made from FR4 material with a copper thickness of 35m
and board thickness of 1.6mm. The soldermask was done on both sides because of the small
footprint design. This helps to prevent any solder bridges from forming. The copper surface
was treated with hot air levelling (HAL) - lead containing since this helps with solder flow
when working with surface mount components.
The PCB top and bottom soldermask, model, and final board design can be seen in Appendix
D.

6
6.1

Detailed Software Design


Objective

The objective of this chapter is to design a software solution to control the GPS tracker for
sending data up to the cloud. The Airvantage platform needs to be configured first and was
done during a workshop with Trinity. The Trinitys SMART platform must be linked to the
Airvantage database and a GUI must be created using Trintels dashboard designer to allow
the end-user to access the bicycle location.

6.2

Design

29

6.2.1 Main Software Design


The software design used for the main solution would have been done in Sierra Wirelesss
Developer Studio. The developer studio allows for easy application design since ready to use
libraries are supported for Sierra Wireless hardware. The developer studio creates all the
necessary structures only requiring the user to configure the Airvantage user account for
connection to their platform and writing ANSI C application using their libraries. The design
for the main solution in section was not done because of time constraints due tohardware
problems stated in Chapter 5.

6.2.2 Backup Software Design


The software design for the backup solution was done in Arduinos development
environment. The software code consist variable declarations, setup, functions and code
execution.

Table 9: Software function and description

Function
int PowerOff(void)
int PowerOn(void)
int sendCommand(String command)
String receiveCommand(void)
void serialEvent()
void runPCcommand(void)
void sendGPSdata(void)

Description
Powers the modem down
Powers the modem up
Sends AT command to the modem
Receives command from modem
Receives AT commands sent from PC
terminal and executes runPCcommand(void)
Runs AT command sent from PC on the
modem
Waits for GPS satellite track and sends the
desired GPS information with
sendCommand()

30

The setup below shows the Software serial pin allocations for the modem en GPS UART
communication, baudrate is set and started for the software serial and USB serial
communication. The modem is then tested for operation and shutdown. The main program is
then run updating the bicycle location every 30 minutes. Battery life is improved by the
device only switching the modem on when the location is updated. The information from the
GPS received is in a NMEA string format and was extracted using the TinyGPS library. The
software serial library used, allows for multiple UART connections. The only downfall was
that only one software serial communication can run at a time, but this was not of any concern
to my application communication. This is because the device does not require that the modem
and GPS communicate at the same time.
SoftwareSerial GPSss(2, 3); // RX, TX
SoftwareSerial GSMss(4,5); // RX, TX
void setup()
{
pinMode(ON_OFF, INPUT); // ON/OFF PIN ON GSM Modem physically open
GPSss.begin(9600);
GSMss.begin(9600);
Serial.begin(9600);
GSMss.listen();
GSMss.println("AT+IFC=0,0");
delay(1000);
PowerOff();
Serial.println("Restarted");
}

6.3

Trinity SMART Platform

The modem was set up to communicate with Trintel Telecoms SMART platform. The
platform allows users with no programming experience to create a GUI for viewing the
variable sent from the modem. The platform uses a dashboard for the design were variables
can manipulated using transform functions and then assigned to a metric. The metric can then
be linked to various gadgets to visually present the data. These gadgets can then be placed on
the dashboard which is the end-user interface. The flow diagram can be seen in Functional
Diagram 6. The dashboard design in Figure 15 shows the current location of the bicycle along
with the speed, altitude and direction.

31

Data

Metrics

Gadget

Dashboard

Functional Diagram 6: SMART Platform Builder

Figure 11: Transforms

Figure 13: Variable assigned to a Metric

Figure 12: Gadgets

Figure 14: Metric assigned to Gadget

32

Figure 15: Gadgets placed on Dashboard

33

Results

The Following data was received from the device connected to the PC terminal. This shows
that the GPS correctly acquired the data and uploaded it to the Trinity platform.
Restarted
Get GPS data
New GPS data
Speed=0.370400 LAT=-33.9217 LON=18.8636 SAT=0 PREC=0
Direction: N
Altitude: 132.7
Send
Command:
at+awtda=d,"trc.gps",6,"lat,float,33.9217","lng,float,18.8636","vel,float,0.3704","alt,float,132.7","dir,float,0.000","fix,float,7.0
000"
OK
Successful Transmission

Table 10: Data on trinity platform agreeing to that sent from the device

Conclusion and Recommendations

The bicycle tracker performed satisfactory according to the project objective. The
microcontroller was able to communicate successfully with both the GPS and the modem.
The GPS worked accordingly and all the necessary information extracted for use. The data
was successfully sent by the modem to the Trinity platform and displayed on the dashboard.
The main design was able to communicate with the development studio but did not allow for
design completion. The functionality of the backup plan was satisfactory..
The modem operation was stable most of the time but would sometimes stop functioning. I
recommend that a better modem error listening should be implemented in my application and
act accordingly. This can also be solved with getting a MCU that has UART ports for each
device.

34

References
[1] 4G Americas, GSM: Global System for Mobile Communications. [Online].
Available:
http://www.4gamericas.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=page&sectionid=242
[Accessed 27 September 2014].

[2] C.
Janssen,
techopedia,
Legacy
Network.
[Online].
Available:
http://www.techopedia.com/definition/25121/legacy-network
[Accessed
27
September 2014].

[3] M. Sauter, WirelessMoves, The GSM Logo: The Mystery of the 4 Dots Solved.
[Online]. Available: http://mobilesociety.typepad.com/mobile_life/2013/11/the-gsmlogo-the-mystery-of-the-4-dots-solved.html [Accessed 25 September 2014].

[4] GPS.GOV, The Global Positioning System, 11 February 2014. [Online]. Available:
http://www.gps.gov/systems/gps/ [Accessed 27 September 2014].

[5] 3G South Africa, SUBSCRIBER IDENTITY MODULE. [Online]. Available:


http://www.3g.co.za/index.php/technology/2g-mobile-technology/sim [Accessed 28
September 2014].

[6] Sierra Wireless, Datasheet: AirPrime Q2686 Refreshed Product Technical


Specification & Customer Design Guidelines, Sierra Wireless, 2014.

[7] davidc, Sierra Wireless: Sierra Wireless Developer Forum, Airprime Q2687 with
XM0110
GPS
module.
https://forum.sierrawireless.com/viewtopic.php?p=33186#p33186

[8] Semtec, Datasheet: STF202-22 and STF202-30 USB Upstream Port Filter and TVS
for EMI Filtering and ESD Protection, Semtech, 2004.

[9] Littelfuse, Datasheet: ESD Protection Design Guide: TVS Diode Arrays, Littelfuse,
2012.

[10]
Sierra Wireless, Datasheet: AirPrime XM0110 Product
Specification and Customer Design Guidelines, Sierra Wireless, 2012.

Technical

35

[11] AVX,
Datasheet:
NTC
Thermistors,
AVX.
http://www.avx.com/docs/masterpubs/ntctherm.pdf [Accessed 7 October 2014].

[12] Arduino,
Arduino
Uno.
[Online].
Available:
http://arduino.cc/en/Main/arduinoBoardUno [Accessed 25 September 2014].

[13] Globalsat Technology Corporation, Datasheet: GLOBALSAT GPS Engine


Board, Globalsat Technology Corporation, Hsien, Taiwan, 2010.

[14] G.
Baddeley,
NMEA
Data,.
[Online].
Available:
http://www.gpsinformation.org/dale/nmea.htm. [Accessed 30 August 2014].

[15] Sierra Wireless, Datasheet: AirLink FX Series User Guide, Sierra Wireless,
2014.

[16] Texas Instruments, Datasheet: MAX232, MAX2321/Dual


Drivers/Receivers, Texas Instruments, Dallas, Texas, 2004.

EIA-232

[17] Maxim Integrated Products, Datasheet: MAXIM NiCd/NiMH Battery FastCharge Controllers, Maxim Integrated Products, Sunnyvale, CA, 2002.

36

Appendix A: Project Planning


Table 11: Project Planning

Date
Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4
Week 5
Week 6
Week 7
Week 8
Week 9
Week 10
Week 11
Week 12
Week 13
Week 14

Research Design Optimise Manufacture Testing Report


X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X
X

37

Appendix B: Project Specification


The objective of this project is to design, manufacture and test a tracking device for a bicycle
that is non-intrusive and able to report on location and speed. The device should make use of
a GPRS modem connecting to the Sierra Wireless Airvantage API that Trinity SMART
platform uses. The SMART platform provides a web-based GUI (dashboard) which needs
only a compatible browser and the internet in order to access the data. The location of the
device should be obtained from a GPS. The non-intrusive bicycle tracker will be a viable
design if the following criteria are met:
Hardware:

Functional operation between the microconstroller, modem and GPS module.


Charging Functionality
Power Efficient Design
Accurate location, direction and speed measurements

Software:

Development of a web-based interface that allows the end-user to track the bicycle
GPRS Communication between the device and the Airvantage Platform
A working dashboard showing bicycle location and speed

38

Appendix C: Outcome Compliance


Outcome
1. Problem Solving (identify,
assess, formulate and solve
convergent
and
divergent
engineering problems).
2.
Application of Scientific
and Engineering Knowledge

3.
Engineering
Design
(procedural and nonprocedural
design and
synthesis
of
components,
works, products and processes)

Assessment Items
Identify problem and solution criteria;
Identify engineering info required for solution;
Formulate solution approaches;
Model/ analyse solutions;
Evaluate solutions;
Formulate / present the solution.
Use Engineering knowledge and methods
Formal analysis and modelling;
Communicate concepts, ideas and theories;
Reasoning and conceptualizing using components;
Dealing with uncertainty.
Use Physical laws as foundation
Formal analysis and modelling;
Reasoning and conceptualizing using physical principles.
Use techniques, principles and laws of engineering science
Identify and solve open-ended engineering problems;
Work across engineering disciplinary boundaries (shared fundamental knowledge).
Identify/formulate problem to satisfy user needs, applicable standards, code of practice
and legislation;
Plans and manages the design process;
Acquires and evaluates requisite knowledge;
Performs design tasks, quantitative modelling and optimization;
Evaluate alternatives (judgment, implement ability and techno economic
analysis);
Assesses impact and benefits;
Communicates design logic and information.

Section
1.1 1.4 and 4

4.1, 4.2 and 5

1.2 1.4, 2, 4,
Appendix A and
Appendix E

39

4.
Investigations,
experiments
and data analysis (design and
conduct
investigations and experiments)

5. Engineering Methods, Skills


and
Tools,
including
Information
Technology (methods, skills and
tools, including those based on
information technology)
6.
Professional
and
Technical
Communication
(effective
oral
and written communication)

9.
Independent
learning
ability
(independent
learning
through
well-developed learning skills)

Plan and conduct investigations/ data analysis;


Conducts critical literature search;
Performs analysis;
Select and use equipment/ software;
Analysis/ interprets information from data;
Draws conclusion (evidence);
Communicates purpose, process and outcomes in report.
Uses method, skill and tools by:
Selecting/ assessing the applicability/ limitations of the methods,
skills and tools;
Properly applying the method, skill or tool;
Critically testing and assessing the results produced.
Creates computer applications.
Written communication:
Uses appropriate structure, style and language for purpose/ audience;
Uses effective graphical support;
Applies engineering methods of providing information;
Meets the requirements of the intended audience.
Oral communication:
Uses appropriate structure, style and language;
Uses appropriate visual materials;
Delivers fluently;
Meets the requirements of the intended audience.
Reflects on own learning and determines requirements and strategies;
Sources and evaluates information;
Assesses comprehends and applies knowledge acquired outside
formal instruction;
Critically challenges assumptions and embraces new thinking.

2 , 4.1.5, 4.1.5, 4.1.7, 4.2.3, 7,


8

4, 5 and 6

1.4, 3 and Appendix E

2 , 4 and 5

40

Appendix D: PCB Design And Manufacture

Figure 16: PCB Solder Mask Top Layer

Figure 17: PCB Solder Mask Bottom Layer

41

Figure 18: Altium Designer 3D PCB Model Top View

Figure 19: Altium Designer 3D PCB Model Bottom View

42

Figure 20: Manufactured PCB top view without components

Figure 21: Manufactured PCB top view with components

43

Figure 22: Manufactured PCB bottom view without components

Figure 23: Manufactured PCB bottom view with components

44

Appendix E: Cost of Components Used


Designator

Item

Retailer

Qty

Unit Cost

Main Design:

C1
C2,C4
C5
C6,C7,C3,C1
C8
GPS
ON/~OFF
R_NTC
R1
R2
R3
R4
SIM
SIM-D1
SIM-D2
SMA-PLUG
USB
USB-D3
USB-U1
VBATT CON

Total Cost
R 2 285.78

Components:
CAP ELEC SMD 100uF 35V LIHT
Mantech
CAP CER SMD 0805 Y5V 2.2uF 16V
CAP CER SMD 0805 X7R 470pF 50
CAP CER SMD 0805 X7R 100nF 50V
CAP ELEC SMD 33uF 25V LIHT
SMA Connector
RS Components
SWITCH TACT SMD R/A 4.7x4.5
Mantech
THERMISTOR NTC SMD 100K 0805
Mantech
RES SMD 0805 5% OPEN 1M0
RES SMD 0805 1% OPEN 100K
RES SMD 0805 1% OPEN 4K7
RES SMD 0805 1% 5K/R 17K8
micro SIM socket
RS Components
ESD A6VISC6 D1
ESD DALC208SC6 D2
SMA plug RG174
OTTO Wireless
micro USB connector
RS Components
STF202-22T1G RoHS ESD/EMI USB Mantech
Protection
Regulator LP2985
RS Components
TERM BLK PCB 3W 5.00 STR BL SQ
Mantech

3
4
2
8
3
1
2
2
3
2
2
2
1
10
10
1
5
2

R 0.50
R 0.60
R 0.16
R 0.49
R 0.90
R 35.06
R 3.00
R 7.91
R 0.11
R 0.30
R 0.30
R 0.12
R 11.62
R 2.88
R 3.31
R 9.60
R 6.94
R 2.78

R 250.18
R 1.50
R 2.40
R 0.32
R 3.92
R 2.70
R 35.06
R 6.00
R 15.82
R 0.33
R 0.60
R 0.60
R 0.24
R 11.62
R 28.80
R 33.10
R 9.60
R 34.70
R 5.56

1
2

R 11.29
R 3.63

R 11.29
R 7.26

45

GSM CON

AXK500147BN1

Trinity

R 38.76

R 38.76

GPS

GPS Module:
XM0110

Trinity

R 672.60

R 672.60
R 672.60
R 1 308.76

GSM Module:
Modem
Modem

_RD GSM Module


Q2686_RD GSM Module

GPS-Antenna
GSM-Antenna

Antenna:
GPS antenna 3m cable no connector
Quad band antenna internal 100mm IPEX

RS Components

OTTO Wireless

1
1

Sample
R 1 270.00

R 0.00
R 1 270.00

1
1

R 67.00
R 26.00

R 93.00
R 67.00
R 26.00

Backup Design:

R 370.24
Charger:
IC BATTERY CHARGER NiCd/NiMH
HOUSING RECEP DIL 10W 43025-10
BAT PACK NiMH 6V 0A750 5xAAA
CAP ELEC RAD 1uF 50V HT
IND W/WOUND AXL 220uH 1.5A
CAP CER DISK 220pF 50V 2
CAP ELEC RAD 10uF 50V ST
CAP ELEC RAD 0.1uF 50V ST
DIODE SKY AXL 40V 3A
DIODE SMD CURRENT LIMITING
FET P-C TO251 60V 9A9 0E28
NS SOT23 80V 500mA 100 MMBTA06

Mantech

1
2
1
10
1
5
5
5
2
2
2
2

R 123.83
R 5.00
R 100.10
R 0.63
R 13.13
R 0.15
R 0.25
R 0.15
12.32

R 18.90
R 7.05
R 0.26

R 370.24
R 123.83
R 10.00
R 100.10
R 6.30
R 13.13
R 0.75
R 1.25
R 0.75
R 24.64
R 37.80
R 14.10
R 0.52

46

PS SOT23 60V O.6A MMBT2907A


RES 1/8W RND C/F 5% 5KTB 5K1
RES 1/4W RND C/F 5% 10/PKT 1K5
RES 1/2W RND C/F 5% 1/4W 470E
RES 1/4W RND C/F 5% 68K
RES 1/4W RND M/F 1% 25K
PLUG D-SUB SOL 15P
HEADER SIL STR 01W 2.54 TH=12
SOCK CRIMP 20-24AWG 43030 SERI

2
10
10
10
10
10
1
50
12

R 0.18
R 0.05
R 0.28
R 0.30
R 0.36
R 0.29
R 5.01
R 0.15
R 0.95

R 0.36
R 0.50
R 2.80
R 3.00
R 3.60
R 2.90
R 5.01
R 7.50
R 11.40

1
1

R 125.00
R 171.00

R 125.00
R 171.00

Shipping:
OTTO Wireless
Trinity

47

Appendix E: Design Figures

Figure 24: Backup Plan, RS-232 to TTL converter

Figure 25: Backup Plan, Complete Setup

48

Figure 26: Main Design Full Setup

49