Need advise on an project....

I am considering using the Arduino platform for a project, and would like some suggestions as to recommendations of the structure and modules needed for it. I am looking for the most cost effective way to produce this system, keeping it simple. Below is a description of the project, your input is appreciated.

PC control of up to 12 remote modules using addressable communications that will allow control of 3 outputs on each module, and an Audio playback shield containing 1gb of audio files that can be selected from the PC, or dedicated controler. The outputs will be relays, rated 10A at 120vac. The RF transcievers need to be multi-band programmable and have a range in open space of 1000m. All modules should have a rechargeable battery.

Please let me know what Arduino components you would recommend. I have played with Arduino before, but not up to date with the newest innovations and the project is somewhat time critical.

and the project is somewhat time critical.

Sounds to me like you should have started sooner, then.

The RF transcievers need to be multi-band programmable

What bands? None of the RF transceivers I'm aware of are programmable.

and have a range in open space of 1000m.

That's a pretty significant range, and will require a fair amount of power. It will also significantly reduce your choices.

You've said nothing about how much data is to be sent, how often, how critical that data is, or whether the end devices need to talk to each other, or only to the PC.

an Audio playback shield containing 1gb of audio files

Audio shields typically have SD cards where the audio data is stored, as .wav files. One gig should be no problem. Choosing which file to play, if the files are not all in the root directory can be a challenge.

The outputs will be relays, rated 10A at 120vac....All modules should have a rechargeable battery.

So, presumably, there is AC power available. Why do you need a battery in such an environment?

A range of 1000m is long. Too long for hobby electronics I think.

If you use a shortwave radio, you probably need a permit/diploma or so.

You might look at these: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PMR446 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Family_Radio_Service http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/General_Mobile_Radio_Service And use a (semi-)professional devices. But I don't know if you are allowed to send digital information.

It is possible to use normal 100mW wifi or an other 2.4GHz device with a dedicated antenna to reach 1km. But those antenna's are illegal in some countries. There are routers that can output even up to 2W, but those are also illegal in many countries.

Perhaps an Arduino with Ethernet shield and routers with directional antenna's is the best solution. But since you have many remote modules, you cannot use just two directional antenna's to communicate over 1km. But if the 'master' antenna can be placed high and is more than 100mW, and all the remote modules have directional antenna's, it might be possible. The Ethernet shield has a SD card slot, so you would need some sound/voice shield. Perhaps both the ethernet and voice shield can be used, but perhaps they share some signals, so you might have to alter something. If you choose this, it is all standard working hardware, only the range is a problem. For a good range, you better choose a lower frequency.

What about using a mobile phone ? You could perhaps use sms text messages for the commands. Or this: http://littlebirdelectronics.com/products/Cellular-Shield-with-SM5100B.html

Take a look at something like DTN24P from www.rfm.com, might satisfy your radio needs.

CrossRoads: Take a look at something like DTN24P from www.rfm.com, might satisfy your radio needs.

I was looking at the SRW1042 5000m Wireless Transmission Module

http://emartee.com/product/42092/SRW1042%205000m%20Wireless%20Transmission%20Module

which claims a 5000m range, but will believe that when I see it, anyone use this module before? comments?

PaulS:

and the project is somewhat time critical.

Sounds to me like you should have started sooner, then.

The RF transcievers need to be multi-band programmable

What bands? None of the RF transceivers I'm aware of are programmable.

and have a range in open space of 1000m.

That's a pretty significant range, and will require a fair amount of power. It will also significantly reduce your choices.

You've said nothing about how much data is to be sent, how often, how critical that data is, or whether the end devices need to talk to each other, or only to the PC.

an Audio playback shield containing 1gb of audio files

Audio shields typically have SD cards where the audio data is stored, as .wav files. One gig should be no problem. Choosing which file to play, if the files are not all in the root directory can be a challenge.

The outputs will be relays, rated 10A at 120vac....All modules should have a rechargeable battery.

So, presumably, there is AC power available. Why do you need a battery in such an environment?

Paul, the contact rating of the relays need to be 10A at 120vac, and 5 amps 48vdc. These will control other battery OR line powered accessories. As for the frequency, anything from 315mhz through the 2.4ghz spectrum. several modules I have seen are selectable As for the data, Will not be much at all, just to trigger the module, no real bidirectional flow.