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Real-time position tracking and finish-entry detection with LoRa

For outdoor events, it is often necessary to determine the position of participants or equipment within a defined spatial area in real time. GPS enables high accuracy position detection. The LoRa radio technology allows sending data over long distances (up to 40 km under optimal conditions).

The system developed here captures the position of up to 255 objects in a spatially extended area. It consists of several tracking devices and a central base station. The tracking devices determine their position using GPS and send it immediately by LoRa. The base station receives the data and stores it locally. It is available in real time for visualization and evaluation. The system can automatically perform position-based evaluations such as finish-entry detection. The criteria (for example, the target line) can also be defined by means of tracking devices. The LoRa communication is bidirectional. The Base station can send commands to every tracker device. It can configure or control each tracker on the fly.

The tracking devices are designed for very low power consumption. Thus they are ready to be powered by energy harvesting.