Flying searchlight

HugeOne

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Hello All,

I'm building a FPV plane* that I want to rig for night flying. So I built a head light out of 12 Cree XP-G and carclo lens (16deg.) see:

Light1.JPG


All leds are on 10mm PCB from cutter, I glued them with thermal epoxy to a 1mm aluminium plate and added ribs between the four leds strings. As you see it's is no major heatsink, but the that light is mounted on the front of the plane flying around 25mph. With that amount of forced cooling, what current do you think it will it be possible to drive the leds at?



camside.JPG


camtop.JPG


*FPV plane is a radio controlled planes flew via a camera mounted on board.
 

A380

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WOOWW!!
Really nice work.
You could give up to 1.4amps to each led, driving them hard (better 1amp).
But you should mount a heatsink with fins and turn the lights few secons before take off. Too much heat.
I also fly RC, not FPV (First person view) and don´t know if its going to be usefull if you fly very high.
Have you try flying FPV with other lightning?

Offtopic: Is that an easystar? 2 cameras? Why?

Better to put on a diferent place the cameras, they are going to fry!
 
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HugeOne

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Offtopic: Is that an easystar? 2 cameras? Why?

This is a twinstar II. The two cameras, along with goggle provide 3D vision.

Better to put on a diferent place the cameras, they are going to fry!

There's 1/4" space between the light and the cameras's pcb. I want the light to be there so it follow the pan/tilt action of the camera.

Do you think installing a temp probe and have the data downlink with the rest of the plane's telemetry is worth it?
 

AlexGT

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I guess 800-900ma, would be about 2000 lumens! please post video of the finished product! Must be a very expensive hobby you got there.
 

luckybucket

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Just a guess here, but I would start off small at 350ma then go up from there. I would hate to have to redo all that work. If you have a powerful enough fan you can always try to simulate the conditions on the ground. A large squirrel fan from a furnace or the ones you buy for $200 should work well for testing.
 

A380

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Its a good idea having a temp probe and somehow use a fail-safe so if temp goes to high, leds could turn to a low mode before frying the cams and get blind.
Don't know what sort of equipment you are going to use but would be great having a return-to-home sistem.
Also think about how many amps is going to consume and the runtime; that is going to be a huge li-po.
 

LukeA

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I would not worry about overheating those LEDs, let alone the cameras.

If I was to do anything to that setup, I would try to force some airflow in a direction tangent to the aluminum the LEDs sit on. Also, I'd paint that face black for emissivity. (Really! it makes a measurable difference)
 

HugeOne

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If you have a powerful enough fan you can always try to simulate the conditions on the ground.

You give me an idea there! I'm going to use the plane's motor and propeller, best fan out there :)

Don't know what sort of equipment you are going to use but would be great having a return-to-home system.

There's one, if radio-link is lost or it can be called manually. It also display an artificial horizon.

Also think about how many amps is going to consume and the runtime; that is going to be a huge li-po.

3S lipo, 4200mAh. Plane use around 6A to maintain flight.
That's actualy a very small lipo, my helicopter use a 12S 5000mAh :)

For night flying, wouldn't IR light be a better option?

The best option would be a low-lux camera, but it been done before and only available in black and white.

If I was to do anything to that setup, I would try to force some airflow in a direction tangent to the aluminum the LEDs sit on. Also, I'd paint that face black for emissivity. (Really! it makes a measurable difference)

I take good note of that, maybe something to catch airflow and direct it between the cam and light...
 

wechnivag

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OMG this is so AWESOME!!

Imagine if you could fly this stealthily somewhere in the dark and then turn on the lights suddenly. The local police would be flooded with UFO reports!!!
 

HugeOne

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Imagine if you could fly this stealthily somewhere in the dark and then turn on the lights suddenly. The local police would be flooded with UFO reports!!!

Now, that would be funny! However flying this over populated area is out of the question.

New pics:
The driver is in the front for cooling, I had to move the video Tx in the back as it was wrecking current regulation.
Light2.JPG
 

HugeOne

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The beast is almost done, all systems are check :)

tsii1.JPG


tsii2.JPG


tsii3.JPG


tsii4.JPG


tsii5.JPG


tsii6.JPG


tsii7.JPG


tsii8.JPG


tsii9.JPG
 
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HugeOne

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EVG920_1.JPG


I use EVG920 googles.

The mic if for earing on board noises, motor screaming, wind, unespected vibration....

The camera cannot see IR.

I'm already thinking of my next project :)
Building a light similar to this one, but instead of XP-G I'd use SST-90.

However, packing 12 SST-90 in a 4x3cm package will require an incredible and heavy heatsink. So, I'm think of soldering the center pads along a 5mm square copper tube in which coolant will circulate.

Packing optics so close in another challenge, the SST's dome won't fit the carclo 10mm, maybe by removing the domes...

All this, off course, will be in a bigger plane.
Ready for 25k+ lumens?
 

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