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I would like to work with some laser marker systems like these: Steradian Technologies - Laser Tag Equipment
But I need some technical knowledge first. Does anyone know some litterature or sites about marker electronics?
Do marker and sensor kits exist?
You're right. Why didn't it occur to me to simply mail them and ask for the schematics for their products? Silly me
I'll go ahead and do that right away. In the mean time, if anyone has any additional info, I might learn from, feel free to contribute.
It's probably a modulated IR laser and a simple photo detector, they're not excessively complicated. The only thing that sucks about IR is you can't SEE if it's actually working =) Although Radioshack (bleck) used to sell a special card that would turn darker if it was exposed to IR light. Would be fun to play with. Seems more of a novelty than a serious sport though, if you're gonna go to all that effort to play with guns go play paintball =) Much more invigorating (but expensive)
Mind you that's not 'true' IR. It's near IR, I have a friend that has a modified camera (removed the IR filter) and uses heavy visible light filters to take some pretty interesting photographs. Do a google image search for IR photograph. Nature/sky scenes are particularly dramatic.
Hmm, I was hoping to find modules where that was already determined, so I didn't have to find a way to measure it myself.
If I'm in doubt, can't I just swap the IR-laser for a red one, and all other things being equal, get the same result?
I'm looking for a detectable range of 50-70 meters...
If you want that Pax, buy the guns from that site you mentioned =) Otherwise you're going to have to do some dirty work yourself. The focus is determined by the frequency of the light, not sure how far apart RED led's are from near IR but it's going to produce different focus conditions all things being equal.
Oh well, since you present it like that, I select option number 2. I'm not made of money, so I have to do the dirty work myself
I did also count on that from the beginning, but I thought it'd be foolish not to ask people on the forum if they knew any good resources first. Its better than re-inventing the wheel completely.
The hard part I think about the whole deal with a laser gun is it's area of effect. A well focused laser has an incredibly small point even at a good distance, you have to soft focus the beam without turning it into a flashlight, which requires some knowledge of optics, and some way to test it.
Any pre-made modules you buy are likely going to be focused already so it's a batter of putting two lenses in front of it, one to widen the beam and then another in front of it to focus it back into a beam just larger. You could practice with a red laser pointer for visability with a smoke generator or something so you could see the beam spread but you'll have to refocus with an IR laser to some degree. I'm going to guess an IR laser is going to be visable in smoke through a digital cameras viewfinder just like a red one is visably, but you may need to be in a relativly dark room to see it. I'm going to guess you want a spread of about 1-2 feet at your max range, and then you just use a debounce circuit on your detector so that 'flashes' don't count as hits.
Well, I gotta admit that you were thinking ahead of me there, but nonetheless those were some good points. I see that using IR-laser may cause me some trouble, so perhaps starting out with visible laser would be a hit
Thanks for the comments.