Since adding a new station requires us to disclose the location and elevation of the antenna. Would it be useless to setup a sensor in my car? I’m thinking I have extra Pi’s and an extra ProStick Plus, I can easily set it up to feed from my car while I drive but since my location is changing at an average of 60mph clearly I can’t feed back that I am at location X, elevation Y. So would this be (as I expect) 100% useless to the FA feed?
for ads-b data no site location is needed. if you want do mlat a gps is needed to auto update position
Well then I guess I’ll build myself a Pi for the car that ties to my hotspot.
Note to self - measure the bits being uploaded by my current station to make sure I’m not going over my data limit.
and don’t watch your flightairmap screen while driving
PiAware can automatically use your current position if you connect an external GPS source. This is not officially supported for PiAware but should work. I believe we have users who have tried this successfully if you look in the forum.
Here is where I realize what a colossal idiot I am.
I know how to make antennas. It isn’t rocket science, I learned it as a child.
I bought the $50 FA 26 inch antenna thinking it would be far better than anything I could cobble together.
So I repaired my busted ProStick Pro. I didn’t have an antenna handy but I did have an SMA Male to N Male adapter and thought to myself “Well hell just cobble together a makeshift antenna to test this”. So I did. I made a simple 69mm antenna based off the connector.
The first shot is my cobbled up antenna 1/4 wave length.
The second shot is the Flight Aware 26 inch 1/2 wave length or so.
Similar performance at a tiny fraction of the price. I think I paid $2 for the connector. the copper I used for the antenna and the 4 pole ground plane was scrap copper I had.
Edit - FYI I do not have MLAT enabled on the makeshift antenna.
I used Paper clips and a 15cm/6in pigtail SMA-male to F-female from China through ebay for $2 + free shipping
…and in this one I saved even $2. No pigtail, no connector. 1/4 wavelength ground plane (spider) built right over the input connector of Blue Pro Stick using paper clips
Note: Pro Stick plugged into Laptop using a Right angle bend, USB female to USB male.
But how many planes are you guys picking up?
I did not bother about plane count, as these were experimental setup to test feasibility of running Raspbian pixel x86 + dump1090-fa + piaware on windows laptop and windows desktop
However if you see the laptop’s screen, the plane table at right is full, even more if scroll down, means lot of planes.
Dont get misguided. I have compared 1/4 ground plane with Flightaware 26 inch antenna both at same location, and Flightaware antenna outperformed 1/4 wavelength ground plane with about 180% message rate, 130% plane count and 120% maximum range.
I’m comparing them side by side right now. Once I enabled MLAT on the 1/4 wave clobbered home gamer version, I’m still getting better performance than the FA26".
You probably need an external filter.
This has happened with me also. My 1/4 wave out performed FA 26 in, till I added a FA filter. After filter addition situation reversed and FA 26in out performed 1/4 ground plane.
The ProStick Plus has a built in filter.
1/4 wave home made on the left. 1/2 wave FA26" on the right.
Yes, but the filter is located between RF pre amplifier and tuner chips. With strong Cell phone and other communication signals, the rf preamp gets overloaded, resulting in poor performance. An external filter removes the cell phone signals BEFORE it reaches preamp.
If the built-in filter was located between antenna connector and rf preamp, external rf filter will not be needed.
It still means the signal is equally amplified for this side by side comparison. The only difference in this setup is the antenna.
Please see the test results.below.
I’m not saying that a filter wouldn’t change things. What I am saying is that the comparison is apples to apples here. The setup is identical from the antenna connector down the only difference being the antenna itself.
Yes, the FA antenna being high gain (5 to 6 dbi), picks much more Cell phone signal than the low gain (1.5 to 2 dbi) 1/4 wave groundplane. That is why the low gain antenna works ok without external filter, while high gain antenna requires external filter