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COLLIDE-3 AVM Walter Castellon CpE & EE Mohammad Amori CpE Josh Steele CpE Tri Tran CpE Sponsored by: Dr. Josh Colwell


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COLLIDE-3 AVM. Walter Castellon CpE & EE Mohammad Amori CpE Josh Steele CpE Tri Tran CpE Sponsored by: Dr. Josh Colwell. Background. Planetesimal to Protoplanet to Planet is well understood Have gravitational forces Prior to this stage is still unclear - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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COLLIDE-3 AVMWalter Castellon CpE & EE

Mohammad Amori CpEJosh Steele CpE

Tri Tran CpE

Sponsored by:Dr. Josh Colwell


Planetesimal to Protoplanet to Planet is well understood Have gravitational forces

Prior to this stage is still unclear How do the particles stick together?

High velocity vs Low velocity impacts Do they hold the key?

The Experiment COLLIDE-3 will be

attached to a sub-orbital rocket

Upon entering micro-gravity LED’s and a Camera will be turned on to record the experiment

Next a spherical quartz object will be dropped onto dust/simulant

The camera will record the results of the quartz object and dust/simulant in micro-gravity

The Experiment

The Problem

COLLIDE-3 scheduled to fly on private, experimental suborbital rocket This rocket had an AVM module which would

control all of the functions of COLLIDE-3 The rocket had problems, and was no

longer available to us Dr. Colwell was left with an experiment, but no

way to run it Needed a new AVM if he wished to utilize his

experiment on a different rocket.

AVM (Avionics Module)

Brain of experiment Manages hardware/power Runs COLLIDE-3 Record results Store results


Connected to 28VDC source and 120VAC sources Low weight High vibration resistance Fully automated Capable of recording greater than 80fps at

640x480 at times ranging from 30s-2m User friendly External access to flight variables

Experiment must always update with these new variables

Cost efficient

Hardware Block Diagram








AVM Components

EPIA P820-12 embedded board Microcontroller Camera LEDs Solid State Drive Accelerometer Display Module Stepper Motor Micro-step driver Muscle wire Wireless Comm

Standard Components

LEDs: 2 LED arrays each array has 48 LEDs

Micro-step driver: requires 12v, 5v, PWM

Muscle wire: 1 amp of current at 5V


AVM will be able to support both industrial and consumer cameras

SVSI “Stream View-LR” and GoPro “HD Hero”

GoPro is a consumer camera used during initial experiments to reduce financial loss in case of rocket failure

SVSI is an industrial camera that will be used more often in the long run

SVSI vs GoPro


200 FPS 60 FPS

640 x 480 1280 x 720

Gigabit Ethernet None

$5950.00 $199.99

Display Module

Can use either serial or USB interface

User friendly software Will allow user to view current

experimental variables

Display Menu

Displays all experimental variables Delay after microgravity Delay to record Recording duration

Updates every 1 second

External Communication

Rocketfish micro-USB bluetooth adapter

Data transfer of 3 Mb/s

Range of 20 feet

No interference

Minimal weight and footprint

Wireless Access (via BT)

Supported by: Windows XP, Vista, 7 MAC OS 10.4 and later

Default shared folder is AtMega code Variables will be top 3 lines for ease of

access Copy file locally make changes copy

back to shared folder

Solid State Drive

Using SATA II connection write speed is 95 MB/s

Shock Resistance is 1,500 G Vibration Resistance 2.17G – 3.13G

(Operating – Non-Operating)


Series M4

Interface SATA III/II

Capacity 60 GB

Write Speed 95 MB/s

Price $79.99


Parallax H48C 3-axis readings Unfortunately, support is for

PBASIC language Need conversion for ATMega

Reads in voltage outputs from each axis and converts into a G-rating using the following forumula: G = ((axis – vRef) / 4095) x (3.3 / 0.3663)

Our code must do this conversion

Accelerometer – False Positives

Pins can sometimes falsely detect G-levels

Costly mistake that needs to be protected against Will have counter loop that continuously

checks flag every .4ms If pin consistently reads zero gravity for set

amount of time, it is not a false positive, and experiment can proceed

EPIA P80-12

Hosts the experimental code and the variables that can be changed externally.

Uploads procedure code to the microcontroller

Activates recording for the camera

Handles high speed image transfers from the camera

EPIA P80-12

Cost is $310 Windows board

Compatible to all cameras Flexible to experimental changes User friendly

Excellent hardware and software support Smaller form factor


Stores experimental variables and procedure

Reads in microgravity mode from accelerometer

Utilizes relays to activate COLLIDE-3 components

Communicates with EPIA P820-12 to power on camera


6 dedicated PWM lines Small footprint Meets basic requirements

I/O pins Memory (RAM, EEPROM) Serial/USB pins

Larger support base C language (all members familiar) Familiarity

FT232R Breakout Board

Allows communication between the Arduino program on the P820-12 and the ATMega328

Utilizes the ATMega’s Tx and Rx lines

Power Conversion

Rocket will only provide standard AC sources and a 28V DC power supply

Our components take 5,6, and 12 volts 12V: Microstep VCC, LEDs 6V: Microstep input, muscle wire 5V: ATMega328

Will utilize DC-DC converters and regulators to convert the 28V to usable levels


12V requirements will be handled by CINCON EC7A-24S12

Input voltage range of 18-36VDC Output voltage regulated at 12V with

output current of 835mA


6V requirements will be handled by POWER TRENDS PT78ST106H Takes input voltages from 9-38V Outputs a constant 6V voltage at a current of 1 amp Will utilize two of them, since we will use

more than 1 amp of current at 6V


Finally, 5V requirements will be handled by a standard LM7805 5V regulator Instead of regulating the 28V input source,

this will simply be taking in a 9V battery


Since the microcontroller cannot provide enough volts/amps to power COLLIDE-3’s components, it will instead activate a relay, which will have a load of the regulated voltages from the

sources previously mentioned We will implement the AXICOM IMB03C mechanical relay

Handles up to 2A of current Functions up to 300g of shock, survives up to 500g of

shock 100uV control voltage will switch relay, which can have

a load up to 220V

Circuit Board



Accelerometer (H48C)

Pin Label Definition

1 CLK Synchronous clock input

2 DIO Bi-directional data to and from the host

3 Vss Power supply ground which is 0v

4 Zero-G “Free-fall” detection output; active-high

5 CS\ Chip select input; active-low

6 Vdd +5 vdc

Software Flow Chart


Software Flow Chart

CostPart Cost Part Cost

P820 $310 SSD $79

ATmega328 $3.83 Accelerometer(H48C)


Serial to USB converter $15 DM $88

Voltage regulator $2 Relays $10

Button $1 Breadboard $12

Misc. Components $5 LEDs Included

Bluetooth $40 Micro-step Driver


Muscle Wire Included Cameras Included

Case Included

Total $646.71

Project Issues(Technical)

Communication protocol between EPIA P820-12 and ATmega328 (FT232R)

Camera compatibility

Changing variables externally

Project Issues(Nontechnical)

Mono Theft Crashes