Seabed mapping with an RC boat


I will build a seabed mapping RC boat at university. I have collected together the components, please share your thoughts if you think it can be made in an easier / cheaper way:

Everything will sit on a Breadboard 830. The main board will be the Arduino Pro Mini 328 - 5V/16MHz. The GPS will be the Adafruit Ultimate GPS Breakout Version 3. (NMEA 0183) The Sonar Sensor will be the Furuno Bronze235DHT-MSE. (NMEA 0183) For communication I would like to use the XBee Adapter kit with a Ciseco XRF wireless RF radio UART RS232.

The battery will be a 7,2V 1700mah (already have it) so I will need two regulators (7,2->5V and 7,2->12V). For programming the Arduino Pro a Sparkfun FTDI Basic Breakout 5V with an FTDI Cable 5V. And finally a Ciseco SRF USB Stick plugged into the laptop.

The boat will be a NQD PX-16 catamaran style RC boat with some mechanical adjusting to sink deeper and more "horizontal" for better sonar accuracy.

On the laptop I will need a mapping software which can use the raw NMEA 0183 packets and can make a seabed map out of it.

The whole project will be around 600 dollars as I have counted (I live in Europe so the prices are a little higher).

Please feel free to comment, I would appriciate any answers / comments!


A project that might be of interest.

You might need a compass to track the orientation of the boat, might help in reconstructing the data