Version 1.2.0 – Mesh networking!

Meshing has come to GliderLink! I just published version 1.2.0 to Google Play. This version will broadcast not only your own location, but the locations of up to three other nearby gliders. This increases the range and robustness of the system. This version is backward compatible with older versions, but the older versions will not benefit from or contribute to the mesh network.

Example of extended range: You are glider A. Glider C is far away, out of range. However, glider B is between you and C, and in range of both of you. When C broadcasts its location, B will see it and re-broadcast it, which you can then receive. In effect, you will be able to see gliders that would normally be out of range.

Example of increased robustness: You, glider B, and glider C are all within range of each other. Glider C is thermalling, and when it broadcasts its location, the fuselage happens to be blocking transmission to you, but not to glider B. Glider B sees glider C and re-broadcasts C’s location. This time, you are able to receive C’s location since your line-of-sight is not blocked to glider B. There is more than one path for C’s location to get to you, so the system is more robust. The more gliders there are in range, the most robust the system is. One caveat is that C’s location may get to you a bit later, since you have to wait for glider B to broadcast on its usual 20 second cadence.

Some friends and I tested it for three days last weekend, and it worked well. One pilot was able to see me from 70 nautical miles away, thanks to meshing.

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