Coin-sized Retrievor solar-powered GPS tracking device


October 23, 2013

If you've ever wondered where you left the laptop or how your dog came home smelling like a frog pond, then a GPS tracking device might seem like a good idea. The trick is to find one small enough to be practical and doesn't need its batteries replaced every day. The Retrievor RET-100 is a self-contained, solar-powered GPS tracker no wider than a US quarter that is looking to find a way to market via a crowdfunding campaign. Full story here: Retrievor

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Comment by Thomas J Coyle III on October 23, 2013 at 7:20am

Could this be used to help find a flyaway that went out of range of onboard telemetry?



Comment by Jordi Orlando on October 23, 2013 at 8:22am

It looks pretty great, but at $300 per device, and without any evidence of working prototypes, I'd be hesitant to back. Also, the video didn't give me the most confident feeling. That being said, the concept is cool, and I would totally buy one if it weren't smartphone-priced.

Comment by Arthur Benemann on October 23, 2013 at 8:47am

This is the module I would design around if I was going to build something like this.

Comment by Pieter on October 23, 2013 at 8:53am

there are already devices that can be used to track lost planes by GPS and SMS

This one:

is a bit larger than the retrievor but at a fraction of the cost.
It also hasn't got a solar panel, but that wouldn't be too hard to add for us DIYers

Comment by Sean Headrick on October 23, 2013 at 9:11am

Tileapp.comThis might be a good option. It was an ad on this thread page page

Comment by LanMark on October 23, 2013 at 9:33am

I guess I am confused.. the Tile thing looks like just a RFID tag that you need to be within 150 feet from.. must have a little battery in it so its a active RFID tag which is why you have to replace them every year.  So Tile wouldn't work at all for finding your plane unless you knew within a short distance where it was... This coin sided device seems like I need a data plan for the micro SIM to work.. that on top of the 2/month fee... correct?

Comment by Morli on October 23, 2013 at 9:47am

I am confused too. How will this device help in locating lost plane?  The device will be placed inside the plane that is lost, so  the device it self is lost along with plane.

Nope ,  this can't be solution to lost plane location help.

The best I saw was small UHF bug that helps in locating lost plane using  RDF method.

Comment by Phil Gordon on October 23, 2013 at 10:57am

If this tracker works like it say it does it will be a nice addition,especially as the price comes down a bit.

Comment by Mathew krawczun on October 23, 2013 at 11:27am

I'm more interested in the cullular module that can fit into that size package and use that little power. also the round Solar cell has to be custom made and where most of the money goes to.

honestly this seems more like vaporware from someone with some CAD skills and no knowedge in electronics. a better (and cheaper) way to do this would be to add a Cullular module to you're drone and have you're plane phone home tiself.

Comment by LanMark on October 23, 2013 at 12:00pm

@Mathew this isn't intended for the drone/UAV market.. obviously this is designed around general use and thus more potential customers.   For what we do a simple module that plugs in would be ideal.. but hard to get a actual manufacture to build something due to so little sales potential compared to something like this which everyone and their grandma can buy.


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