(19) United States
(12) Patent Application Publication (io) Pub. No.: US 2002/0027524 Al
Pippin (43) Pub. Date: Mar. 7,2002
(54) HYBRID SYSTEM AND METHOD FOR
GOLF COURSE DISTANCE
DETERMINATION USING GPS NAVIGATION
(76) Inventor: John Festus Pippin, Alpharetta, GA (US)
Correspondence Address: MORRIS MANNING & MARTIN LLP 1600 ATLANTA FINANCIAL CENTER 3343 PEACHTREE ROAD, NE ATLANTA, GA 30326-1044 (US)
(21) Appl. No.: 09/880,418
(22) Filed: Jun. 13, 2001
Related U.S. Application Data
(63) Continuation of application No. 09/406,894, filed on Sep. 28, 1999, now Pat. No. 6,278,402, which is a non-provisional of provisional application No. 60/102,060, filed on Sep. 28, 1998.
(51) Int. CI.7 G01S 5/14; A63B 57/00
(52) U.S. CI 342/357.08; 473/407
A system using GPS navigation signals to aid in distance determination on a golf course includes a cart-based unit, a hand-held distance determining unit that can be interconnected with the cart-based unit, and a central base station. The central base station includes an RF transceiver for wireless communications and a controller. The hand-held distance determining unit includes a GPS receiver, a display, memory for storing golf course location data, and a controller. The cart-based unit includes an RE transceiver, a display, and a connector cradle into which the hand-held unit can be inserted in order to share information with the cart-based unit. With the hybrid system of the invention, the benefits of the full features, large display screen and rich functionality of a cart-mounted GPS-based distance determining system are provided along with the benefits of a small, inexpensive, portable hand-held unit that a golfer can use away from the golf cart, such as in "cart path only" situations. The system provides improved accuracy either through use of differential GPS techniques or through use of WAAS satellite GPS correction signals. The invention also provides a method of determining distances on a golf course including the steps of inserting a hand-held distance determining unit in a connector cradle in a cart-based unit and relaying information between the hand-held unit and the cart-based unit. The method further includes the step of transmitting GPS correction data from a central base station to golfers on the golf course.