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Updated 03-04-2021

Adaptive RC Sailer Project

Title: Adaptive RC Sailing Interface Controller
Introduction: Unfortunately some enthusiastic RC model sailboat skippers have suffered drastic physical injuries or disease which renders them quadriplegics. Adaptive devices serve numerous people with disabilities in a variety of ways. Such devices can be incorporated into RC radios so that afflicted sailors can once again enjoy the hobby and sport of model yachting. This project is an innovative but nevertheless simple modification to achieve such goals.
Description: The project was initially divided into three phases, with progressively more sophisticated approaches, but simpler methods of interfacing and for operating.
Click to Download a copy of the Requirements Document.

Phase One incorporates simple modifications to existing RC transmitters. Off-the-shelf hardware (Arduino UNO micro-controller and X9C102 digital potentiometers) and open source software form the basis for constructing a simple to build control box that easily interfaces to most radio transmitters used by RC skippers. Readily available adaptive devices (sip & puff switches), already familiar to physically disabled individuals, are used to bridge the gap between the skipper and his/her sailboat. Please Click On the "Images" link below for photos of the feasibility demonstration adaptive interface effort. Note: The first PCB board wiring color scheme and layout differ slightly from the updated Fritzing diagram, but is nevertheless functionally the same. The Arduino sketch source code and design notes are also available at GitHub Adaptive RC Sailing.

Documentation:
Download Adaptive RC Sailer Interface Phase One Design Notes including
Overview, Concept of Operation, Design Notes, List of Components, and Helpful Hints
Download Phase One Prototype Wiring Diagram with Notes
GitHub Adaptive RC Sailing to download the Arduino Phase One Source Code
Images: Phase One Images
Phase Two utilizes the FlySky i6X transmitter training / firmware update port. A synthesized PPM signal is generated by the Arduino and controlled by the adaptive switches. The PPM signal is injected directly into the training port via a connecting cable. This approach avoids having to remove the joystick potentiometer connections and thus eliminates any modifications to the RC transmitter.
Documentation:
Download Adaptive RC Sailer Interface Phase Two Design Notes including
Overview, Concept of Operation, Design Notes, List of Components, and Helpful Hints
Download Phase Two Wiring Diagram with Notes
GitHub Adaptive RC Sailing to download the Arduino Phase Two Source Code
Images: Phase Two Images
Phase Three expands the PPM technique developed in Phase Two and focuses on developing a system for controlling sailboats by using voice recognition commands. A secondary effort involves exploring alternate control switch inputs including head tilt and positional accelerometers, electroencephalographs, and electromyogram inputs. Your help is needed on this aspect of the project. Please visit GitHub Adaptive RC Sailing to share your engineering insights and software creativity in order to make Phase Three a reality.