How to Win the DARPA Challenge

The DARPA challenge is to create an autonomous ground vehicle that can navigate an obstacle course. The problem with entries in the DARPA Challenge is accurate GPS positioning.

Steps

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    Mount 1 Directional Yagi GPS Antenna on a satellite dish in place of the feed horn on each of the 4 corners of the vehicle.
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    Position each antenna 45 degrees up from the horizon and face each antenna away from the vehicle collinear to the center of the vehicle. Effectively drawing an "x" through the center of the vehicle
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    Connect a GPS Receiver to each antenna.
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    It is important to fool each GPS into thinking that it is 100 feet (30.5 m) away from it's actual location
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    Drive the vehicle to a known GPS coordinate and calibrate each GPS receiver to that coordinate.
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    Connect all 4 GPS units to your laptop and subtract out the true error to effectively place the laptop in the center of the huge grid created by pointing the dishes away from the vehicle.
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    The data file from DARPA should now be able to run with greater precision since the vehicle can stay well within the limits.

Warnings

  • To prevent damage, serious injury, or even death, never install an antenna near high voltage power lines.

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