Thursday, June 16, 2011

About OpenPyro project

In 2004 while working on the order from a professional fireworks company we faced pyrotechnics world for the first time. After seeing the system we designed for fireworks shooting in work we got a new hobby shared by all the members of our team. Fireworks.
We made a research and were really surprised at the fact for how the amateur and professional world of fireworks fall so far behind the high tech progress.
Watching the Open Source hardware progress we decided to design an open source system for fireworks shooting with professional features available for the amateur budget. Thus the OpenPyro project appeared.

Our core objectives:
  • Designing an open source hardware system for pyromusical fireworks shooting available for amateur budget.
  • Popularization of modern technologies in the field of amateur and professional fireworks.
  • Raising security level of amateur fireworks.
  • Popularization of Open Sources Software and Open Sources Hardware development, initiating social network for the development of open digital systems for fireworks shooting and trick effects.

Core vision:

OpenPyro system takes transient place between massive professional systems for pyromusical shows and the various low-cost amateur fireworks systems. Thus, it gives the opportunity to get highly professional level of trick effects with music synchronization and in accordance to the firmly scheduled plan at a lower cost.
The most important thing is that the OpenPyro system is going to be compatible with technologies used by amateurs:
  • Matrix principle of electrical fuses initialization increases shooting channels under significant cost savings (less cable veins, PCB is smaller in size and thus cheaper in cost). Besides, this principle is widely described at pyrotechnics forums and widely being used in practice.
  • Usage of a low cost unilateral ISM radio channel (433 MHz for Europe and 315 MHz for USA) does not require registration. Depending on firmware the device can either be compatible with Chinese consoles controlled by PT2262 encoder or control Chinese channel receivers emulating PT 2262 encoder. In that case there is a chance to use proprietary protocol in order to increase controlling speed and safety. (applying checksums, encryption etc.)
  • Trigger Sequencer input for compatibility with old shooting systems. Sequencer is a sequential shooting of all the channels with a specified interval, for instance, 1 second. The advantage of this technology is that the input can be connected to any shooting system increasing channels capacity.
  • Compatibility to existing software for PyroIgnitionControl, ActionBase control.

We believe the device compatibility with the existing technologies will stir up interest of a global pyrotechnic community as it is going to facilitate device implementation.

Thus, we believe:
  • the amateurs would be able to design any of Open Pyro elements independently
  • as it is an open system anyone can modify it in accordance with his own needs thus assisting OpenPyro project development
  • OpenPyro project may lead to the development of a social network interested in fireworks solutions.

Main tasks for the nearest future:

Designing and development of the current prototype device and publishing the electronic circuit licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0
Designing the source code firmware device licensed under GNU GPL.v3

For more details you can find us at openpyro.com , openpyro.googlecode.com and in twitter @openpyrofx

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