UVU Computer Engineering Capstone Project

Infinite Laser Tag (2019-2020)

Project Sponsor: NSF LEAP Program
Team Members: Ryan Nelson, and David Riggs

Faulty Advisor: Dr. Afsaneh Minaie

  • System diagram.
  • Digi XBee S2 ZigBee antenna.
  • XCTU interface connected to XBee antenna, showing the antenna settings.
  • Human Laser Tag Gun Design
  • Alien Laser Tag Gun Design
  • ESP8266 E12 NodeMCU microcontroller pinout
  • Gun test circuit.
  • Actual player signal received by another player shown by oscilloscope.
  • Complete player node circuit.
  • Implemented player vest circuit. See coiled wire used to attach the vest and gun allowing full range of movement.

Games in entertainment are an important part of society. Laser tag has been used for team building and exercise by schools, businesses and corporations. According to an IBISWorld [1] study, laser tag arenas in the US generated $461.3 million in 2019, with steady continuous growth projected over the next several years, leaving opportunity for innovation and expansion.

This laser tag system consists of at least three nodes on a Zigbee wireless mesh network: two player nodes which include a blaster gun and a vest and a master node which manages the game and keeps score. The blaster guns use infrared LEDs to shoot at other players, transmitting information about the shooter using Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) controlled by a microcontroller on the vest. Also, on the blaster gun is a rumble motor and speaker which provide physical feedback to the user who shot them. The vest uses infrared transistors to receive signals from other players, indicating with LEDs that the player was hit, and uses the microcontroller to decode the information sent by those other players’ blasters, and share that information with the master node via the Zigbee network. The master node primarily keeps score and manages other information important to the game. It is programmed to handle many different game types.

Zigbee technology is an improvement on the IEEE 802.15.4 standard which uses the 2.4 GHz band. Advantages of Zigbee technology over traditional Wi-Fi include self-reparation of the broken network, which is easily possible with fast moving nodes, a potentially limitless number of nodes allowed on the network, and portability of the network to different locations. 

Students' Presentation