The ARK-io "Survivaldeck" Packs a Raspberry Pi, SDR, Environmental Sensors, and More
Pseudonymous maker "techno-recluse" has put together a "survivaldeck" cyberdeck design dubbed the Apocalypse Repository of Knowledge-Input/Output, or ARK-io — powered by a Raspberry Pi 3 Model B.
"This design came about while planning a mobile weather station, which developed into an emergency/survival deployment tool," techno-recluse explains of the project. "[It's] a device that can be deployed easily in an emergency scenario with readily available DC power sources (battery from car/motorcycle/tractor/lantern/cordless tools, etc.)"
The list of functionality built into the system, which is housed in a robust ammunition box and held in place using a custom 3D-printed frame, is impressively broad: A NESDR wideband software-defined radio, installed alongside a BN-220 global navigation satellite system (GNSS) receiver and BME-280 temperature/pressure/humidity sensor, gives it the ability to scan for active radio transmissions in emergency and amateur communications bands, collect meteorological data and NOAA satellite data, and monitor the local environmental conditions.
At the same time, a built-in five-port switch allows the device to act as a central server for a small local network — handy, given that it also includes a library of reference material on topics including survival, medical, and engineering. There's an integrated voltmeter and ammeter, a four-port USB hub, an amplifier and 3W speaker, and a small USB keyboard and 4" touchscreen display for input.
"I wanted the unit to be as flexible as practical in terms of power input sources, and also be configurable to optimize consumption," ARK-io's creator explains. "Input can range safely from 6V to 22V DC, with three means of providing power: External power provided via 5.5mm barrel jack; external power provided via terminal connections (e.g. jumper cables from a vehicle, or twisted wire leads); temporary internal power provided by three 18650 Li-Ion cells (in series).
"Power consumption can be monitored via the voltmeter/ammeter, and adjusted via hardware switches for the major components. The network switch, two ventilation fans, GPS module, and environment monitor display can each be toggled off individually. Power to the external speaker can also be disconnected via a dummy plug in the 1/4" switching audio jack."
More details on the project are available in techno-recluse's Reddit thread.