In Boating World Magazine's May Gear Locker they showcase a nice gadget that allows you to detect above-normal operating temperatures of your equipment.
"Being proactive can help you avoid major problems, including those that may occur in your engine compartment. Telatemp�s pistol-grip IR (Infrared) Thermometer gives an early warning of potential equipment failures by detecting above-normal operating temperatures. Its built-in laser pointer allows you to pinpoint specific locations on machinery. Basic accuracy is +/- 2 percent of reading over a range of zero degrees to 600 degrees Fahrenheit or +/- 4 degrees Fahrenheit, whichever happens to be greater."
And for the second time this week, we have some 'wireless lighting' news. However, this time it is for real, since this solution uses solar power and therefore does not require any electrical wires.
"Just because the sun slips away each night doesn't mean that you can't still utilize it. When electrical wires aren't an option, you can trust solar energy to keep the lights on. Heath/Zenith motion-detecting solar lights can be placed near the dock to illuminate your boat at night and startle any suspicious strangers. Detecting motion up to 60 feet away and operating up to 14 days without recharging from direct sunlight, these lights are energy-efficient, saving an estimated 9 billion kilowatts of energy and minimizing energy pollution."
Following up on a previous story on Stealth's LittlePC, here is the wireless LittlePC... Not such a bad idea by the way, certainly not on a boat where cables are even more of a hassle than at home. And with all these marina Wi-Fi hotspots popping up everywhere, it is an even better idea.
"Stealth today has released their latest LittlePC with 802.11b wireless capability. The model LPC-401XW can run at a blazing 3.2GHz making it the smallest most powerful feature rich machine available on the market. The built-in wireless Ethernet capability opens doors for many applications where traditional network cables could not be run. Mobile medical carts, movable kiosks, digital signs, factory floor connectivity and remote data acquisition are a few of the applications well suited for Stealth�s new LittlePC."
In order to help you power all these great devices that are being presented on this weblog, Ocean Navigator has released a newsletter discussing the necessity of inverters and how to install them.
"Inverters have become a desirable piece of equipment to provide AC electricity (alternating current, just like household service) onboard. This is done by taking direct current from your batteries, changing the type of current (current is measured in amps) and increasing the voltage from 12 or 24 volts to 120 volts. Notice that the voltage in most applications is a 10-to-1 exchange � from 12 to 120. This is very helpful in realizing quickly that for the same power output, divide the watts output from an inverter by 12 to get the number of amps from your batteries. This can be staggering when you use a large AC appliance like a hair drier at 1,200 watts and that takes 100 amps DC from the batteries."
An LCD display with built-in PC, without being able to see it. Great for space restricted environments like a saloon or cabin. Guess it won't be long before we see a rugged version of this one.
"TrustedReviews gets a glimpse of Elonex's prototype 32-inch LCD Media Center PC at the Ideal Home Show in London. The Elonex Media Center, which has the depth of a typical flat-screen TV, features a full-sized motherboard, 3.5-inch hard drive, integrated Wi-Fi and Ethernet, and two built-in side speakers. The device can also be wall mounted for optimal Feng Shui living space and placement."
A different kind of marine electronic equipment than I normally write about, but nevertheless it will be relevant to some. I know what hassle it can be to be able to have a BBQ on board, but may be this is a solution...
"You won't need to faff around with matches or lighters as the Q features handy built-in igniters. There's even a built-in light, so you can see what you're cooking in the dark. The chic but sturdy Q utilises high grade gas jets, giving you uniform heat for perfect grilling every time. And, unlike rival grills, the Q BBQ boasts 105 square inches of non-stick, dishwasher safe cooking surface, more than enough for a flame-grilled feast."
Lots of weather news today... Boat Test highlights 'The Weather Channel Marine' which was co-developed with NASA and is designed to withstand harsh marine environments. The system consists of a small satellite receiver and antenna and is available for purchase through authorized marine electronic dealers.
"The Weather Channel Marine uses advanced satellite broadcast technology specifically designed to deliver critical information in real-time to professional and recreational boats. This is not a static download of outdated images or a blurry weather fax -- it's a full color overlay of marine weather that is continuously updated as new information is received."
A new solution from WeatherData for those of you who prefer to sail the coastal waters, since it won't work if you are to far away from land... Apparently they have some special marine features as well, but it was originally developed with land based applications in mind.
"Special features will be available for marine use including marine charts for the U.S. and surrounding coastal waters, and reports on wave height, buoy observations, high surf advisories and tide data tables. A future version of Storm Hawk will also offer predicted radar that includes the location of storms ten to 30 minutes into the future and will provide the location and prediction of cloud-to-ground lightning with up to 97 percent accuracy, a WeatherData exclusive service."
The people from MarineLED keep sending out these press releases through which they promote their new 'wireless lightning technology.' May be someone who reads this is able to explain what they mean by that, because I find it hard to figure out...
""Wireless" lighting technology now available for the marine market. MarineLED� LLC - a Seattle-based dealer of marine-specific LED lighting - is pleased to announce the opening of their e-commerce website. Founded in January, 2003 by a group of boating enthusiasts, MarineLED is passionate about exploring the dramatic potential for light emitting diode (LED) lighting for vessels of all types and sizes. MarineLED is committed to working with its suppliers and partners to bring this cutting-edge technology to their valued clients."
More and more private yachts are using real time tracking systems to locate their vessels via a web based interface, anywhere and anytime. PurpleFinder seems to be one of the most popular. It has two basic features, PurpleFinder Reporter and PurpleFinder Guard.
"PurpleFinder Reporter - enabling two-way location, monitoring and communication with your remote people and assets worldwide."
"PurpleFinder Guard - providing two-way data communication to enable you to locate, monitor and protect your vulnerable people and assets around the world. Providing the DSAS Ship Alert System for discreet ship to shore emergency notifications."
Looking at what you need in terms of technology, hardware and software, it can be deployed relatively easy. You can even embed your location on your boat's website in real-time... One other nice feature is called 'geofencing':
"Geofencing - send us your latitude-longitude boundary coordinates and we will preprogramme your D+ unit to automatically broadcast the yacht's position if this boundary is crossed. Perfect for bareboat charter! If the coordinates are set to the harbour or marina entrance then you will be notified as soon as the yacht is moved."