March 24, 2012, 7:18 AM — So there's this group of five high school teenagers from Marin County, California and San Francisco, and they want to build a full-on Battlestar Galactica Viper motion-flight simulator for the 2012 Bay Area Maker Faire. You can help them turn their (my) super-nerdy dream into a reality on Kickstarter.
So far, the group has put together the first part of its Viper fuselage cut from a Piper PA-28 airplane from the scrap yard. The students have also installed a racing seat with a six-point harness and some of the cockpit's interior panels. The whole thing is strapped onto a steel frame that they designed in Autodesk and a local fabricator professionally welded.
Now they need a little help raising enough money to turn it into a crazy 360-degree-motion Viper flight simulator. The cockpit will be set up on a motion control platform that will let it pitch up and down and roll--barrel rolls!
The cockpit will also be a fully immersive experience, with joysticks, throttle control, three front screens that will show flight footage, and a full instrument panel. Considering that this same team has already made a bunch of cool Maker Faire projects, I have no doubt they can pull off this off, too.
And in case this alone isn't awesome enough for you, the teens also used Lego and Arduino in their prototyping and testing, as seen in this video.
The group's Kickstarter project has already reached its $2,500 goal but the team could use more funding to meet their total $17,000 project costs. The Viper team says any extra pledge money will go to help the Young Makers program for future programs.