A Spanish company, specialising in bespoke onboard sensing and data acquisition systems for moving vehicles, was awarded a contract in December 2012 to develop the integration of the In-Car unit of the tracking system, which must be fitted to all participating cars, for the 2013 World Rally Championship season. The first event was the Monte Carlo Rally at the end of January. Vero Technologies played an important part in the development of the end device as it
supplied the extruded aluminium enclosures, modified and engraved end panels and IP65 gaskets that house the equipment.
The Spanish company designed and manufactured the radio component integration, supports, consoles, looms and ancillary electronic power feed conditioning and battery back-up, which are housed in several different units to make up the complete system. Its main functions are to provide a tracking system to geo-position all the racing cars every ten seconds, to provide stage split times, to provide a Yellow Flag warning to alert all drivers on the stage if there is a problem and to provide an SOS button in case of accident. It also provides movement alert and/or other position related alarms from internal sensors. The units are controlled from Race HQ and all the units can be programmed and set via GSM/GPRS and/or UHF radio link.
The units are attached to a carbon fibre support inside the cabin of the vehicle. The main unit is a GSM/GPRS/GPS multifunctional box, with several digital inputs, tri-axial accelerometers and movement sensors, a CAN interface and two serial interfaces. The unit has GPS and GSM antennas. A separate UHF/GPS box provides a secondary GPS signal plus a UHF uplink to a local repeater aircraft. The units both have internal power supply conditioning and a two-hour battery to ensure functionality after power off or in the event of an accident.