FlightAware Discussions

8dBi 978MHz-1090MHz Antenna

We are thinking of adding in a batch of 8dBi UAT + ADSB antennas in our next shipment. These are wideband antennas that are tuned for both UAT and ADSB. They are about 50 inch long, which is about double the size of the FlightAware ADSB antenna.

These will be approximately $60 on Amazon, about $15 more than the FlightAware ADSB Antenna.

So is bigger really better? Put in your vote.

2 Likes

The old antenna is 6dBi so these are 2dB more, which means ~20% more range.

Looks to me to be a good deal.

By my numbers, you could run an extra 30 ft of rg6 cable and have the same signal strength as the standard FF antenna.
Power level would be up something like 60 percent with the same cable lengths.
I’m guessing it would eliminate the need for an amplifier and associated power injector- a much cleaner and lower maintenance system.

Yes! My 1090mhz DPD Productions antenna was $150. (UAT is also $150). If I can get a UAT for $60 - Fantastic!

I like the idea. :smiley:

Well, if N456TS gets one I guess I’d be in for one. Can’t let him get too far ahead. :laughing:

I don’t know much about UAT. What would it take to add to my existing setup?

Probably not buy. Already have 2 FA 1090 ant- 1 for the house, 1 for the RV. UAT results when tested were low, like the vitamin by the same name, one-a-day. :wink:

I was thinking after I voted for the new antenna…

Correct me if I am wrong but the FlightAware filter passes a range of 980MHz - 1150MHz.
Would not UAT signals at 978MHz be filtered out or made extremely weak meaning the filter will need to be removed in order to receive UAT?

That being said my new FlightAware filter, which has proven to be a positive addition, would become a hindrance and will need to be removed from the mix in order to receive what appears to be a fairly small amount of UAT transmissions on 978MHz due to the fact it is not nearly as widely used as 1090MHz.

If in fact this is the case I would rather see a FlightAware amplifier added to the list of products before this antenna unless a filter is made available to accommodate 978MHz as well.

Folks, keep in mind – Amps already exist for very, very little money (less then $20 total). There is no point in spending energy on something which already exists.
This would be an antenna for both 1090 and 978 @ 8dBi. You can use it for 1090 or 978, or both.
It’s a win, win with higher gain. (first rev FA branded antenna is 5dBi).

If you don’t want to receive UAT, then that’s ok. This antenna is still an improvement over most antennas currently available (This includes the current revision of the FA branded antenna).

According to the posted scope screenshots, the low end is 940mhz, so you should be good to go with the filter + UAT + 1090ES.

That’s good to hear!
Then I am all for the antenna but guess the only other question I would have is if PiAware in it’s current state or in the near future will be able to decode UAT transmissions or would an application such as dump978 have to be manually installed and configured in order to report to FlightAware. (Not that this is a huge deal as far as I’m concerned as long as its documented.)

You can get Satellite LNB type amplifiers that can be used for mastheads for under $20 - but you can’t be sure just how low noise they are,
people who upgrade to the HABamp ( dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/637 … 1090V5.pdf ) but that is about $50 and not ideal for mast-head use.

You can get LNA from ebay ( ebay.com/itm/181628625954 ) for under $20 - but this has separate power so is not idesl for masthead use since it doesn’t use power up the line.

What we need - from somewhere - is is MiniCircuits PSA4-5043+ based amplifier sealed for masthead use that will run off 3.3 - 5v passed up the wire, and a USB adaptor style power injector.

This could be used
antenna - filter - amplifier - downlead - power injector - pi
or
antenna - amplifier - downlead - power injector - filter - pi
or
without the filter
and of course the Pi could be another sort of reciever

The UAT (Universal Access Transceiver) antenna is a vertically polarized UHF antenna intended for installation in aircraft & helicopters. Each UAT installation uses one or two signalling antennas; at the bottom and/or top of fuselage.

While it’d certainly be nice to have options for antennas, the 5.5dBi antenna works perfectly well for me and so I’d much rather spend money on a tested, purpose-built, weatherproof masthead amplifier and power inserter that is specifically designed to work with FA antennas and filters.

Sure, one can get a satellite amplifier and power inserter in some shops (though I haven’t found any power inserters here in Switzerland; evidently the satellite receivers send power up the line, so the inserters aren’t needed, so nobody sells them) but it’d be much easier to have an amplifier run on 5V on the line, which is sourced by a USB device plugged into the Pi. Maybe integrate a filter into the amplifier and a lightning suppressor into the power inserter? That’d be a lot more elegant that various hackery that I’d otherwise need to do.

i would buy one - but only with these specs:

  • 7.5 dbi
  • 37,5" long
  • builtin filter for uat + adsb
  • color black (not white as they look like broken legs from a cheap garden table)
  • better weather sealed connector
  • below 100$ incl. next day delivery in europe

best
tom

Isn’t UAT limited to North America?

Sounds awesome. Does this mean you’ll be supporting UAT & ES on the same raspberry pi box soon? I’ve been struggling to get dump978 to work on my dump1090 box with dual receiver cards.

you are probably right - i didn’t notice that uat and flarm are on different frequencies.
so - my antenna should start with 868mhz :slight_smile:

I would second this! Trying to build UAT tuned antenna with better then 2dBi gain (i.e. not a ground-plane “spider” antenna) proved troublesome for me and there is no other UAT antennas in the close price range.