A preliminary investigation about modules helpful to our purpose was firstly run out. We identified possible candidates that allowed to test basically two different alternatives.

Both systems mount the same GPS device (GARMIN 12XL) and the same tripod head (MANFROTTO 329). The difference concerns the navigation gyro module. SYS I includes a magnetic gyroscope whose output is read by the PC; SYS II mounts the EFIS module and a PDA that can actually substitute the PC. Anyway, a 3DM gyroscope is also mounted on SYS II directly on the tripod head, to read the pointing angle of the camera with respect to the mounting frame.

Figure 1. Modules for SYS I

Figure 2. Modules for SYS II

In the link Modules a description of each module and how the modules are connected is given. Both the system ( 1 & 2 ) are caged in an aluminum framework. A GPS antenna is fixed with Velcro to one side of the frame, and can be detached to be placed outside the aircraft for optimal satellite reception. The gyro-modules work with +9 VDC batteries mounted onto the frames for easy exchange. The iPAQ have internal Lithium ion Batteries. The GPS uses 4 LR6 batteries. Both systems can be powered up using external +9 VDC. The iPAQ is charged by using the external power inlet (+9 VDC).


Figure 3. The first assembled system (SYS I)


Figure 4. The second assembled system (SYS II)