Designing and realizing a Car Datalogger built around a microprocessor based development platform

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Kardos Gergely
Department of Automation and Applied Informatics

On April 19, 1965, Intel co-founder Gordon E. Moore published an article in Electronics Magazine and predicted a phenomenon about the complexity of electronic circuits:

“The complexity for minimum component costs has increased at a rate of roughly a factor of two per year. Certainly over the short term this rate can be expected to continue, if not to increase.”

In 1946 the first programmable computer was made. It contained 18.000 electron tubes, was 2,5 meters tall, 40 meters long and its weight was about 30 tons. The appearance of the integrated circuits decreased the sizes with several orders of magnitudes, increased the reliability and the performance. The 50 years after Moore's statement has proved the correlation known as Moore's law.

Nowadays credit card sized minicomputers were introduced, which although can fit in one's palm, yet capable of solving such complex tasks as home automation, process and system control, web server functions or can be used for hobby purposes for example as a home entertainment system or a video game emulator. Microprocessor based development boards are becoming more and more popular among development engineers and hobby users thanks to it's several IO ports and the low price.

The goal of my Thesis is to get familiar with microprocessor based development cards and to develop additional circuits (capes) so they will be capable to serve as a car data logger. With this equipment there's a possibility to store the position and speed in a standard file format, download it wireless and to visualize the data on a map. The device is also capable of communicating via GSM and has a simple alarm function. It has a development potential with the current bases. My aim was not only to realize the hardware but to provide the embedded and PC software so at the and of the work I can verify the functions of the device not only in the laboratory but on the field.


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