Making the Smart Trampoline: High-Tech Elements
The High-Tech Elements
“Let’s be clear: no one has really done anything like this before. Can you think of a piece of consumer electronics that is designed to:
- Be left outside in the elements for years?
- Be able to be attacked by water blasters, sprinkler systems, soccer balls and keep going?
- Use a sensor attachment system that has to be able to support gross deformation of its cables, repetitive high impacts, endless bending and fatigue cycles?
- Can be left outside in the extremes of all local temperatures – ranging from Canada and Dubai?
“I actually can’t think of one – except tgoma. The system is built to IP67 waterproof spec. To do that in the application we had to use some German manufactured mechanical components made to military specs. It's expensive to make this thing work, keep working, all outside and in harm’s way!
“The sensors have to be waterproofed via plastic encasement, yet to work have to be manufactured with less than a degree of 'production shift' in tolerance. A tablet holder system had to be developed that could be mobile so it could be shifted around the trampoline enclosure to account for the changing positon of the sun and its impact on screen visibility. And once all the technical and functional design was done, you had to look at the human interface and figure out how to shape and install all the parts on a moving, dynamic system that represented no risk to the user.
“Our data cables have to be able to work next to lawnmowers, chainsaws, and all the various types of workshop equipment that lives in garages, and ensure the data integrity of the signals delivered by the sensors. EMI/RFI compliance was hard, but the guys did it.”
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