SUNDAR getting close to field testing

I have a nearly complete prototype of the sensor at this point. The scanner will find and then track the sun as the car turns. If it losses the sun, it will open up its scan window to get it back. The gyro integrates at over 1kHz and provides clear prompts to the scanner as to how the car has turned so that it can adjust. The sun heading is output over a serial line at about 2Hz. It includes the azimuth and a figure of merit based on how strong the sun signature was found and if the scanner has the sun locked or not. The accuracy is pretty amazing as well. In a lab setting, the variation in angles in about 0.003 degrees. Thats right, much less than a single degree!

The last issue to resolve before I build a working unit for my AVC robot is to test the sensor against the real sun and not my 2 watt LED. I am a bit afraid that the near IR content of the sun may pass through my ND filters and saturate the sensor. But it has been to cold and overcast to get outside to test. This morning was 0 deg F and we expect 5 inches of snow. Possibly tomorrow we may see the sun.

SUNDAR may possibly have been a bad name to give this unit. I tried to setup a Google alert for the word, but was getting thousands of hits. SUNDAR appears to be a popular Indian name. Need to think of a better/different name.

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