Application ID: 00102
Name: Jon Caris
Department: Environmental Science and Policy
Office: Bass 110
Email: jcaris@smith.edu
Extension: 3042
Project Title: Trimble GPS - GeoXH

Summary: “The ultimate solution for high accuracy GIS data collection”

Background:
The Spatial Analysis Lab (SAL) and the Geology Department are seeking avenues to augment our fleet of mapping grade and survey grade global positioning system (GPS) units. CET generously awarded us a grant in 2002 to purchase 8 Trimble GeoXMs and 2 GeoXTs which are mapping grade GPS units (2-5 meter accuracy and sub 2 meter accuracy respectively). These GeoExplorer units are used extensively by faculty, students, and in our classes. The Geology department’s single survey grade (sub-meter) GPS unit is used primarily by faculty for research.

GPS is the de facto standard for obtaining position data in research and the classroom. Since GPS is the new positioning standard, we are seeing more and more situations in which we do not have enough GPS units available to meet the demand. This situation is particularly acute as it applies to users needing survey grade accuracy for research. With only one survey grade unit available, we often find ourselves juggling schedules and equipment to accommodate users. This situation will only get worse as the Engineering program sends more students to our facility in need of GPS support.

Trimble recently introduced an affordable survey grade unit that is similar in operation to our other GeoXMs (and XTs). The new GeoXH currently is the only handheld computer to offer subfoot GPS accuracy. Furthermore, the GeoXH offers Bluetooth and wireless LAN capabilities which open up new possibilities for integrating data right in the field. The XH also provides memory expansion capabilities (not available on our current units) which make the unit extremely versatile to researchers jetting off to far away places for long periods of time. In short, the GeoXH is the latest and most sophisticated technology in handheld GPS technology and will give our faculty and students unprecedented positioning capability as well as ease of use.

Type of Request: Upgrade
Impact: Almost every class that uses the SAL uses our GPS equipment. Students in the following classes make extensive use of the GPS units: Introduction to Geology Geomorphology Oceanography Summer Science Program Introduction to Archeology Our GPS units travel extensively (more places than I’ll ever see!) and our used by both faculty and students in their research. US States include: Alaska, California, Massachusetts, Montana, New Hampshire, New York, Tennessee, Vermont, and Virginia Countries include: Bahamas, Belize, Costa Rica, Croatia, Dominican Republic, Greece
Anticipated Support: The Geology department and the Spatial Analysis Lab provide support and maintenance for the entire fleet of GPS units. External support is not required.
Additional Funds Sought?: No

Proposed Budget:
Hardware:
1GeoXH gps system$4,495.00$4,495.00
1Zephyr Antenna Kit$1,975.00$1,975.00
12M Carbon Fiber Rangepole$211.00$211.00
1Rangepole bracket$121.00$121.00
1External Patch Antenna$40.00$40.00
 
  Total Hardware: $6,842.00
 
Other:
1Ball Cap for Patch Antenna$18.00$0.00
1Hard Carry Case$265.00$0.00
1Trimble GeoBeacon$1,195.00$0.00
1Shipping and Handling$100.00$100.00
 
  Total Other: $100.00
 

BUDGET TOTAL: $6,942.00

Justification for Major Budget Items: All prices include the academic discount. List price for same configuration would be: $9,115.00 or a savings of $795.00. The Trimble GeoBeacon ($1195.00) is optional, but it enhances our “in-field” or real time positioning significantly. We can achieve similar accuracies with the GeoBeacon with post processing back in the lab.

Recurring costs?: Yes

Description of Recurring Costs: We will need to upgrade our software associated with the GeoXH and both the SAL and Geology Departments are budgeting for the upgrade costs.