My APRS Location – KC8GRQ
Live Scanner Audio
Clinton County Public Safety
Midland County Police and Fire
Saginaw County Fire Dispatch VHF Hosted by RadioReference.com
While looking for info on some ADS-B receivers (plane trackers) online, I came across a post on RadioReference.com about a website owner looking to increase coverage of aircraft receivers. He was offering a free receiver setup to people in select areas who can provide reliable 24/7 receive coverage. I sent my info to him requesting a receiver, since I could put it up on one of my WIFI tower sites. I was approved to receive a kit, and about 2 weeks later, I received it (from Finland).
The website is http://www.flightradar24.com/ and is really neat. Compared to the computer software that Ive seen for these receivers, his site goes way beyond the basic 1990′s looking map files. The website is one of the reasons why I wanted to help his site out. I could see that it was far superior than the other sites Ive been on too.
The receiver kit included the following items
The antenna included is very nice. It has a solid feel to it, includes a neat “notched” mount, which fits snug against a mast pipe and has a easy to use thumb-screw bracket. The ground radials are like mini rubber duck antennas that screw in. It is much better than any other 1090Mhz antennas Ive seen.
The Mode S Beast is the blue receiver box. It has a SMA antenna adapter and USB data. Power comes from the USB cable, so it is simple to setup.Usually you would connect this to your computer, and view maps locally on your PC or share them over the web. Since I dont plan to have the receiver at home, I dont need PC viewing.
To send the USB data to the webserver, they included an IOMEGA iConnect USB-Ethernet adapter. This can use wireless or wired connection to a network. I plan to use it wired to my network, at the tower site. I like the shielded cable they include, the extra small cost will help reduce interference. There is a USB memory stick included in the back, under a label that says “Do Not Remove”. Im assuming that the FlightRadar24.com webserver data is saved on this. My only dislike on this unit is the AC adapter. It needs a Europe to USA physical adapter, and it sticks out from the wall outlet a lot. I will replace this, since its a basic 12v 2amp wall wart.
Currently, I am waiting on the coax to arrive. Once it gets here, I will test it at home, until I can get to the tower site to install it. I plan to mount it all in a outdoor enclosure, at the top of Tower #1 at the 90′ level. I will take pics of it installed when it is done.