A new version of the Airball Sensor BoardIn Oopsie – but it's alive! back in January, I described the process of producing the Airball Sensor Board v3 (and the "oopsie" in the short-lived v2), which made a number of improvements from Ihab's initial design (retroactively named v1).
While Ihab has been busy testing the v3 boards, I've now produced Airball Sensor Board v4, which made a handful of important improvements and made the boards a LOT better:
- Integrated all necessary components from the Sparkfun Fio v3 which we were carrying on the previous boards in a socket. This allows us to reduce the size of the overall board stackup quite a bit and allows us to fix a number of issues with the Fio, and gives us more flexibility in laying out the board as well.
- Relocated the pressure sensors and re-arranged them.
- Replaced the (very tiny) TI TMP102 outside air temperature sensor with a bigger and more manageable TI TMP275.
- Integrated all battery charging and voltage regulation on the board (instead of the Fio) and added a new battery monitor chip to provide accurate voltage and charge/discharge rate from the LiPo battery, which I wrote about recently in Validating air data probe battery life – with data.
This is what the new boards look like when populated:
It takes a number of parts to assemble one:
When assembled with the new mechanical parts, it looks pretty nice! I hope you'll agree:
The internal plumbing is quite clean with the new design:
Flying my DA40 with my new Airball probe!
I took my DA40 up for a short flight to validate the probe (and the probe mount) that I built, to test radio reception, and to see if I couldn't collect some data to add to our growing data set and provide some new insights through analysis.
Here's a close up mounted to the plane:
And a glamor shot of the first Airball-equipped DA40 (at Carson City Airport):
Onwards and upwards!