Wireless tree-mounted solar powered remotely operated camera

Here is a computing hobby project I am considering putting together.  The objective is to clamp the device to the top of a tree somewhere with good exposure to sunlight, and to establish a line of sight network connection to the device to view and/or control its camera.  Think of it as a mini ground-mounted spy satellite.

 

Hardware Components:

  • A low-power laptop computer with the Screen disabled
  • 2x Directional WiFi antenna for both the device itself as well as the base station
  • Camera with remotely operated zoom capabilities
    • Considering 10 watt Toshiba PTZ camera which is $895,  Wouldn’t need the PC then, just a wifi to ethernet bridge
  • Some sort of weatherized housing for these components
    • Will need to survive 90+ MPH winds, Rain
    • Outdoor Housing for Toshiba Camera
  • Solar Panel to charge the laptop battery
  • A bracket / clamp to mount all of this to a treetop
Software Components:
  • Ability to suspend the machine when battery levels are low, or at night, and for it to automatically start when there is sufficient power
  • Remote camera streaming software to view video and control the camera remotely in real time
  • Kirash4

    Arduino ($30) + LiPo battery ($30-$80), solar panel to charge said battery ($10-$20), control unit to charge LiPo ($10-$20).  CMOS camera (sub $100).  Transmitter/Receiver (sub $150) and voila.  Build your own housing and bracket and you’re done.