Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Navigational Technology Concept: "Portable Laser Mapper"

Hello All,

This concept at the onset can be utilized by caverneers be they on foot or as underwater divers within a submerged cavern. If not used by scuba divers to explore an elaborate shipwreck where an interior swim may be desired or needed. Of course this device could also be utilized by first responders. To locate victims that have been buried by falling debris such as earthquake victims. Or fire fighters to gain a floor by floor layout in a high rise building when any visual aid is nearly impossible.

For the last 70 or so years the only way cavern explorers have had a means of avoiding to get lost in a cavern system. Is by chalk, by writing markers on cave walls or other underground land marks. Strings of rope akin to a tag line mostly used by underwater cavern divers. And most recently in the last 20 plus years glow sticks which are snapped and thrown down to light a path.

My portable electronic navigational concept will hopefully be an inspiration for a plethora of similar devices yet to be devised. Be they in underground environments (Caverns, bunkers, labyrinth, Catacombs, Mazes), underwater (Caverns or Shipwrecks), debris piles from a natural disaster (earthquake, tornado, hurricane, etc...), or a multi-story building for an interior layout.

The example I'll focus on below will be that of a caverneer gaining foot access to an underground cavernous lair. Where at the entrance access point the caverneer lays the portable laser mapper electronic device on the ground or on a tripod stand. So as to commence its scanning protocol where at its front end are two circular lens sockets. The socket on the right end is the emitting red laser diode with 4 beams. The left end socket is a receiver blue lens diode to act as a completion for the mapping scan. Where the returning red laser emitter confirms its scan with the blue laser diode receptor like an electronic handshake.

At the inception of a scan the 4 beams of the red laser diode lens emitter will each scan in a up, down, left, right pathways. If an obstruction is encountered during any point of the scan. The portable laser mapper will recalculate much like a (GPS device) and redirect the red laser to a 90 degree bend. Be it in the 4 aforementioned pathways of: up, down, left, or right directions all are 90 degree angles. If a 90 degree angle fails than a greater swath of 180 degrees is recalculated into the scan. If the red laser diode emitter beams meets a wall after a complete 360 degree calculation is reached. It will back track and look for a side passageway to continue its scanning protocol.

During the scan all 4 beams will be scanning for floor to sheer chasm drops. Ceiling elevation or direct passage way width and if a constricted pathway is encountered where a person may not pass. It will mark the scan with an appropriate icon marker in the completed scan data points. Where the user can sift through the complete scan through the device flip top key board and top screen. During the scan the device can recognize "Points of No Return" set to ignore nearly straight pathway scans of more than 1, 3, or 10 kilometers. Where the red laser diode beam will recalculate and redirect its scans elsewhere during the mapping process. If the beam does happen upon a mineral with a bluish tint or that of a sapphire like gem in its scanning protocol. In order to avoid a false positive completion of its initial scan. It will demand the electronic handshake from the blue laser diode receptor lens. If it does not receive the right input or reception commands it will disregard the connection made and continue scanning.

If the "Portable Laser Mapper" is being utilized in a hand held capacity by an underwater cavern diver. The bluish reflection of the water will be disregarded as mentioned just above until the proper reception commands are confirmed. Also the refractive qualities of water will be utilized by the mapper as a means to amplify or boost the signal range of any scans.

Subsequent generations of any developed "Portable Laser Mappers" will have sensor packages built into the device. Such as to gauge temperature, noxious gases, radiation, chemical, mineral or gem deposits during a scan. So the user can avoid any hazards or utilize additional read out markers in planning out their route. The "Portable Laser Mapper" can include an emergency transponder beacon in case of a dire event occurs. Where the user pushes a panic button on the device that can be located on the flip top key pad / key board. When an emergency signal is initiated and if not canceled by a premature declaration. The "Portable Laser mapper" will seek out using its previous scan that the user is utilizing during their route. To find a surface access point where it can commence broadcasting like a satellite phone call to any nearby first responders. During the emergency signal protocol the device user if they haven't been separated from the device. Can check to see if a surface access point has been located and the broadcast signal stage has been reached. Perhaps a screen flash or tone alert from the device can be set to notify the user of its progress during an emergency signal protocol.

Any first responders with a proper "Portable Laser Mapper" of their own set to receiving emergency signal alerts. Will receive akin to a download the route scans of the distressed users device. Including any other pertinent information that the first responder may need in order to locate and rescue the distressed user. Perhaps even initiate a "person to person" voice conversation in order to gauge the nature of the emergency, much like a 911 telephone operator.

Aside from emergencies the device user will have a positional awareness when they are traveling the route of any completed scan. Much like a GPS device knows its position in relation to the tracking satellite. The "Portable Laser Mapper" will know where it is in relation to its completed scan. The user traveling the route can track his or her own progress. During the journey by zooming in or out on the scanned route using the top screen of the device. The device user can also broadcast his completed scan to any nearby users with either another portable laser mapper, smartphone, computer (laptop, tablet), etc... Of course such a feature can be turned off manually if the device user so desires it.

Hopefully depending on the scope of the area being scanned it can take anywhere from a few minutes up to an hour. Depending on how powerful or accurate the model of the device proves to be. However even if a scan is not complete but has only scanned 25% to a third of an area. The user can commence their journey along the route not needing to wait for a total completed scan. Eventually a secondary market of resold area map scans may appear for other users to purchase. Where a purchased map is downloaded via a USB flash media slot or some other internet connectivity. If a pre-purchased map is utilized a side by side scan can still be commenced. To prove how worthy your initial map purchase proves to be originally. And, to make any potential alterations in new changes to the map scan if it proves to be outdated depending on the access point used.

My sincere wishes is that this concept or anything like it to come out of other innovators. Proves a success for extreme sport enthusiasts, if not especially for First Responders in order to save human lives in life threatening circumstances.