Future project ideas!

Hello Internet!

Well, seems like it’s been an awful long time since I’ve posted anything on here. I admit, my life’s kind of been a whirlwind over the past few months, and now things are starting to finally calm down a little bit, so it’s back on to new projects!

I’m still working on a pong set with an arduino, but I’m kind of taking a break from that after having an idea for a new project!

I’m subscribed to a newsletter from the raspberry pi website (raspberrypi.com) where they send new project ideas every Friday. It’s one of my favorite weekly email newsletters since there are always sweet projects on there!

Anyways, here is a project that was posted by Nick Sypteras for integrating a raspberry pi with an Amazon Dot and an RTL-SDR USB dongle to pick up ADS-B broadcasts from commercial airplanes. With his project, he could ask Alexa what plane was flying nearby and the Dot would read off the type of plane, what flight number it was, and where it was coming from and going to!

I love his idea for plane spotting, but I want to try to add a little bit of automation to this sort of project, so that I could get notifications when a specific flight number is nearby, or a plane from a specific destination is close by! My whole project idea revolves around if, say, I (or my wife) was flying back home from a trip, and we were going to need a ride home from the airport. Using the data from the ADS-B broadcasts that the pi would pick up, you can receive broadcasts from planes that are several hundred miles away (depending on how powerful a receiver you pick up).

To drive from our house to the local airport is about 20 minutes (plus say an extra 10 minutes to get shoes on and get the car). If I could figure out roughly how far away a plane would be to be about 30 minutes out from the airport (for this example, let’s say 150 miles away), I could setup the raspberry pi to be searching the ADS-B broadcasts for a signal from the flight number of the plane one of us is on. Then, when it’s 150 miles away, the raspberry pi could automatically send either an email or SMS message to whoever is at home to get ready to head over to the airport!

Eventually, you could add even more automation to this project by connecting it to Uber’s API, so that if I’m getting an Uber ride back home, when I’m 20 minutes out the raspberry pi could automatically call for an Uber to pick me up at the airport and drop me off at the house! My own personal ride waiting for me at the airport!

I’m hoping to try to get this project done and submitted to a couple of contests on instructables.com (I love competing in their contests, they’re so much fun!), so I have to get moving on this project fast! I’ll post updates as I order parts and start putting this together!

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