Autosport Labs Race Capture Pro

Lot’s going on over at ‪#‎pavlotech‬! Been a long time since a blog post so here is an update on some new things.

Over the past few months, I have been working closely with Autosport Labs and their new ‪#‎RaceCapturePro2‬ data logger. This is not your standard logger though as it has an open source concept that allows some serious customization. There are extra features like cell connectivity, bluetooth connected dash systems, live telemetry, sync with Ustream broadcasts, and more.

The feature being showcased in this blog is the the ‪#‎telemetry‬component. There is a cell radio inside the module with a live data connection through a GSM SIM card. Once properly configured, you can then log into their website and view live data (see pics) with minimal delay!

One of the new things the RCP2 can do is interface with a CAN bus network that allows a whole new world of information to be logged (and viewed over telemetry). CAN bus is a standardized automotive computer network that allows sharing of data between control systems with just a pair of wires. This is heavily used in the OEM environment, and recently exploded in the aftermarket industry regarding motorsport dash support, connected systems, and OE vehicle integration. The CAN stream configuration is user definable via a custom script in the RCP2 application.

I recently had the chance to fully test this at New Jersey Motorsports Parkthis past weekend with the Ratchet Head Racing Team Emtron Australian powered car at a Go Trans Am Racing – America’s Road Racing Seriesevent. With on the spot support from ‪#‎autosportlabs‬, I was able to configure many CAN parameters to be broadcasted over live telemetry. To the best of my knowledge, this is the most comprehensive example of utilizing this feature to date (regarding a high number of channels).

There are only 4 wires connected to the ethernet port of RCP2 module, and I was able to pick up the following channels for this test. These in addition to the already included lap timing, GPS tracking, acceleration sensors, and more.

RPM

Speed

Coolant temp

Air fuel ratio

Intake air temp

Brake position

Fuel level

DTC error (diagnostic trouble codes)

Max RPM

Keep in mind, anything the ‪#‎Emtron‬ can broadcast over the network can be picked up. I chose these mostly for testing purposes.

The RCP2 supports some familiar “gauges” as you can see in the screenshots, but also allows you to create virtual channels if you are not interested in using the gauge. This is why in the screenshots you can see some parameters labeled “2”. These also display the raw values.

One interesting parameter I was viewing was a “Fuel used” channel that reports in gallons used (Fuellevel2). The #Emtron has ‪#‎motorsport‬ math calculations that can be configured. Once the fuel system is accurately characterized in the ECU, the system has the capability of calculating fuel used as accurately as 0.01L.

So what can this be used for? Imagine driving a race car (especially during an endurance race) with someone in the pits watching your back the whole time! Peace of mind that is invaluable, especially in a car full of data components like the ‪#‎ratchethead‬ cars. Just drive the car and not worry the whole time about every temperature, pressure, fault, electrical system, etc.

With engineering watching, they can get in touch with drivers to notify them about things before they become issues. They can even start planning diagnostics if something is wrong.

The fuel used calculation the Emtron reports allows the crew to adjust fueling strategies as well during endurance races. Imagine all the possibilities.

Currently on the Autosport labs wiki page there are some example scripts that work with the Emtron “standard” logging CAN output, however this can be fully customized on both ends. Imagine adding channels for Oil temp, trans temp, diff temp, pressures, etc.

Contact Pavlotech for more information regarding sales and support of the RCP2 unit!

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