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2002/107/1 Personal locator beacon prototypes (4) and electronic components (5), developed for the 'Warrendi' Personal Locator Beacon', metal / wood / plastic / paper / elastic, designed and made by British Aerospace Australia / BAE Systems, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1997. Click to enlarge.

'Warrendi' Personal Locator Beacon prototypes and electronic components

Made
In the Australian context, personal locator beacons have traditionally operated as distress beacons at 243 MHz, with transceiver operation on either 243 MHz or 282.8 MHz. Personal locator beacons at these frequencies have now reached the limit of their operational life, and maintenance is considered to be counter-productive.

The 'Warrendi' PLB was the first generation of beam locator to be specified under design brief and investigation, and later contract, to the Royal Australian Air …

Summary

Object No.

2002/107/1

Object Statement

Personal locator beacon prototypes (4) and electronic components (5), developed for the 'Warrendi' Personal Locator Beacon', metal / wood / plastic / paper / elastic, designed and made by British Aerospace Australia / BAE Systems, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1997

Physical Description

This collection consists of four prototypes and five electronic components created during the development of the 'Warrendi Personal Locator Beacon (WPLB).

1. Personal Locator Beacon prototype. It has a rectangular wood and metal casing, mostly painted dark green, with black detailing. An elastic strap-handle is attached to the right-hand side and there is a black dial on one side. Plastic buttons on front are marked 'TALK', 'VOL', 'VOL', 'SQL', SQL', 'GPS OFF,' 'GPS ON'.

2. Personal Locator Beacon demonstration model. It has a rectangular wood and metal casing, mostly painted dark green, with black detailing. A black plastic strap-handle is attached to the right side of the object. It wraps around the right-hand side of the locator, and ends by joining the rear of the locator. Seven push buttons are located on the front face of the object, and they are designated 'TALK', 'VOL', 'VOL', 'SQL', 'SQL', 'GPS OFF', 'GPS ON'. A silver coloured, thin metal, folding antenna is attached to the left-hand side of the object. A yellow sticker attached to the back with writing reads 'Manuf: AUST 01/98 / S/No: DEMO 02 / C/S ID: 406MHz DISABLED / DEMO'.

3. Personal Locator Beacon demonstration model. It has a rectangular wood and metal casing, mostly painted dark green, with black detailing. A black plastic strap-handle is attached to the right side of the object. It wraps around the right-hand side of the locator, and ends by joining the rear of the locator. Seven push buttons are located on the front face of the object, and they are designated 'TALK', 'VOL', 'VOL', 'SQL', 'SQL', 'GPS OFF', 'GPS ON'. A silver coloured, thin metal, folding antenna is attached to the left-hand side of the object. A silver and black sticker attached to then back with writing reads 'Manuf: AUST 01/98 / S/No: 000027 / C/S ID: 3EFE000DBF81FED'. A small yellow tamper sticker is attached to the black dial on the side which reads 'BATT LIFE VOID IF SEAL BROKEN'.

4. Personal Locator Beacon first prototype. It has a rectangular wooden casing, with white text on the front. A small circular voice grille is located near the upper left-hand corner. There are for commands, in white text printed on the front 'OFF', 'COMMS', 'DF', 'BEACON'.

5. Base Band (Memory side). Green coloured plastic transistor card. Green label on one side has text 'FYGA / BO 13\ / TRAINING / PLB 403'.

6.Transmitter used in personal locator beacon. Green plastic transmitter card. A small square sticker to one side '11'.

7. Receiver used in personal locator beacon. Green coloured plastic receiver. Serial no. '21' inscribed in black pen along one side.

8. Global positioning system receiver. Green coloured plastic receiver. Small paper label to one side 'PWI 10 / P1 35'.

9. Base Band (Memory side). Green coloured plastic transistor card. White label on one side '630A / 00138 / FILE NAME / ISS 1'. Ser. No. '10089' inscribed on same side.

Production

Notes

The 'Warrendi' Personal Locator Beacon (PLB) was designed and developed by British Aerospace Australia (now operating as BAE Systems) and design consultants to the firm. There were a number of sub-categories of design, for example, design draughtsman (baseband), design draughtsman (receiver), design draftsman (transmitter), and design consultants.

It is assembled in a cast alloy case (with the models being timber and metal), with four printed circuit assemblies. The GPS (Global Positioning System) module is purchased direct from Rockwell. The transmitter, receiver, and baseband assemblies were produced by BAE Systems, Meadowbank, Sydney.

Each of the principal operating units is made from high density double sided surface mount techniques on a multi-layer circuit board.
'Warrendi' means 'to look for'.

Further information:
Warrendi Personal Locator Beam, British Aerospace, Australia (NSW) Pty Ltd, Submission to the Institution of Engineers, Australia, Sydney Division, 1998 Engineering Excellence Awards, pp.7-8 (see file 2002/107).

History

Notes

No previous use. These items were produced as 'show' units only.

They were produced as part of the British Aerospace Australia's submission to the Institution of Engineers, Australia, Sydney Division, 1998 Engineering Excellence Awards. As a result the Warrendi Personal Locator Beacon was awarded the 1998 Institution of Engineers Australia Engineering Award in the category of Information Technology and Communications.

The items were exhibited at the Powerhouse Museum from February 1999 until December, 2001.

Source

Credit Line

BAE Systems (formerly British Aerospace Australia [NSW] Pty Ltd)

Acquisition Date

11 September 2002

Cite this Object

Harvard

'Warrendi' Personal Locator Beacon prototypes and electronic components 2021, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 16 October 2021, <https://ma.as/11053>

Wikipedia

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