SkyBean – Low cost, high quality variometer for pilots

SkyBean is a variometer built to be strong, long lasting and affordable.

Martin Daricek and his friends are avid paragliders, but were discouraged that variometers were large and expensive. Variometers allow gliders to find elevating airflow to pull them up and provide a longer more enjoyable ride. The team developed SkyBean, a small inexpensive variometer that will allow all gliders to enjoy the sky.

The SkyBean was developed to be high quality and affordable, compact enough to fasten to a glider’s helmet or outfit. Ideally anyone could use the SkyBean, from a beginner level up to instructor.

Design, assembly and coding were the main functions of the development team. Prototype casings were constructed to meet the requirements of being small, solid and stylish.

Testing was done by paragliders wearing cameras to give a bird’s eye view of the validation process. The indiegogo campaign site also shows a few tests being done in an elevator to demonstrate both upward and downward tones.

SkyBean weighs in at 26g, and is only 6.2cm long. The digital barometer is said to be precise to within 10cm. A long life battery is expected to last one hundred fifty hours, and two batteries are included with the SkyBean.

Four levels of volume are available to make sure that the pilot can hear the SkyBean’s tones for maximum efficiency. The tones can also be customized to meet the user’s preference.

SkyBean is a great solution for a highly specialized group of people. Those who have recognized the fantastic utility for the device have already been singing its praises, and the campaign is around half funded with twenty two days to go in its campaign.

Units are expected to ship in August, just a few months after the campaign closes. Bare bones units that first adopters order through the funding period will ship in early June after the campaign closes. Shipping design, updated casing and a smartphone application are the next steps in the life of SkyBean.