MEMS accelerometer tracks arrow flight

December 10, 2013 | 14:37
MEMS accelerometer tracks arrow flight
MEMS accelerometer tracks arrow flight

Full Flight Technology, a specialist in ballistic measurement, has developed an innovative arrow-mounted system to give archers detailed information about arrow speed, flight dynamics and bow performance. Designed for archery equipment manufacturers, sportsmen and competitive archers, the Velocitip Ballistic System consists of a field point (arrow tip), battery pack, docking station, USB cable and PC software.


The field point contains an electronics module built around an Analog Devices  ADXL346 3-axis digital MEMS accelerometer, which monitors arrow drag in flight to provide downrange performance data. The ability to measure arrow drag means that, unlike a ballistic chronograph, the system does not require downrange equipment to measure arrow performance at target impact. The archer simply threads the arrow tip to the arrow in a conventional manner and shoots at the target.


With modern archery equipment, an arrow experiences over 1,000 g of acceleration at launch and over 4,000 g at impact, for each shot. Each tip must be able to survive a minimum of 100 shots. During product development, the ADXL346 was housed in an arrow tip and successfully tested for 100 cycles at 5,000 g.


The ADXL346 MEMS accelerometer is housed in a 9-mm diameter aluminium arrow tip and weighs less than 6.5 grams. Coin cell batteries power the arrow tip for a minimum of 100 shots. Providing 13-bit resolution measurement at up to ±16 g, the ADXL346 also features an integrated memory-management system with a 32-level FIFO (first-in, first-out) buffer to store ballistics data.


Image: Full Flight Technology

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