This study proposes and implements city marathon timing technology using Bluetooth Low-Energy (BLE) communication technology. This study also performs a prevalidation of the athletes’ physiological sensory data that is sent out by the same timing system—the BLE active communication technology. In order to verify the timing and positioning technology, 621 K records of static measurement of the Received Signal Strength Indicator (RSSI) were first collected. The trend of the RSSI between the location and the BLE Receiver when the runners carried a BLE Tag was analyzed. Then, the difference between the runners’ passing timestamp and the runners’ actual passing time when the runners carried a BLE Tag and ran past the BLE Receivers was dynamically recorded and analyzed. Additionally, the timing sensing rate when multiple runners ran past the BLE Receivers was verified. In order to confirm the accuracy of the time synchronization in the remote timing device, the timing error, synced by the Network Time Protocol (NTP), was analyzed. A global positioning system (GPS) signal was used to enhance the time synchronization’s accuracy. Additionally, the timing devices were separated by 15 km, and it was verified that they remained within the timing error range of 1 ms. The BLE communication technology has at least one more battery requirement than traditional passive radio frequency identification (RFID) timing devices. Therefore, the experiment also verified that the BLE Tag of this system can continue to operate for at least 48 h under normal conditions. Based on the above experimental results, it is estimated that the system can provide a timing error of under ±156 ms for each athlete. The system can also meet the scale of the biggest international city marathon event.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited