geffers
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Flight Monitoring

Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:42 pm

Folks,

I have recently become amazed at the popularity of the Raspberry Pi for ADS-B aircraft monitoring.

I've become interested in monitoring aircraft routes and flights, mainly because where I live planes approaching or leaving Heathrow fly over.

It seems one of the main route monitoring sites ( www.flightaware.com ) promote enthusiasts adding local data by using a Raspberry Pi and a USB tuner similar to the TV tuners.

I've currently got a Zero W doing this, use small supplied indoor aerial which records flights up to around 25 miles. Move same aerial outside with portable power for Zero and range goes up to 50+ miles.

Great project if there is aircraft activity close by.

Geffers

2badmice
Posts: 55
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Location: North West England

Re: Flight Monitoring

Sun Jun 04, 2017 8:15 pm

My partner's Dad has a tracker app on his smartphone and I've considered getting him a Pi for his birthday, but his app seems fairly accurate and costs nothing. This is all according to my partner, I've said he'd be really chuffed to have a Pi, as he's into tech and electrics, just want to know how accessible using his Pi on his smartphone is and if he'll be getting more info on this over the app he already uses.
Pi Noob, please be gentle

geffers
Posts: 350
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Re: Flight Monitoring

Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:04 am

2badmice wrote:My partner's Dad has a tracker app on his smartphone and I've considered getting him a Pi for his birthday, but his app seems fairly accurate and costs nothing. This is all according to my partner, I've said he'd be really chuffed to have a Pi, as he's into tech and electrics, just want to know how accessible using his Pi on his smartphone is and if he'll be getting more info on this over the app he already uses.
Badmice,

If your partner's dad has Flightradar24 then that is very accurate and gives great detail.

The Pi will not give any more info but is great fun. Viewing the Pi output on a phone is not great, needs a decent screen but the satisfaction of knowing it is your data (Disconnect the aerial and planes all disappear) and it is helping the site's accuracy is very satisfying.

Also you ** can ** submit data to adsbexchange.com which gives even MORE info plus again a live map.

If your partner's dad is techie he'll love it but Flightradar24 on a phone takes a lot of beating if it is merely the satisfaction of identifying the aircraft.

Geffers

Gergmchairy
Posts: 31
Joined: Thu Aug 30, 2012 3:22 pm

Re: Flight Monitoring

Mon Jun 05, 2017 3:09 pm

Hi Folks,
As geffers has pointed out from a techie 'because I can' aspect its really rewarding to see data coming in from a Pi connected to just an aerial. You can choose to then share that with companies such as FlightRadar24, FlightAware, 360Radar etc. etc.

One advantage you have of going DIY is that no-one can filter the RAW data (that you get from an aerial). All the major companies run filtering to stop sensitive (interesting) traffic from showing, not so if you're plucking the data out of the air!

Once you get the addiction, you are limited only by your imagination and how high you can get your aerial ! The higher it is, the more sky (and aircraft it can see!) My aerial is on top of my bungalow (above the TV aerial) and that gives me a 200 miles radius.. good, but you wonder - if I tweak this or that, will i get a better range ?

Money isn't that important either, my first outside aerial was made on my kitchen table from some satellite TV cable and a bit of 15mm plastic pipe one evening ! It worked well and gave me approx 90% of the data i now get after an upgrade to a commercial one.

If you're interested in Aviation and Raspberries - go for it, hours of fun for the inner geek!

2badmice
Posts: 55
Joined: Thu Nov 03, 2016 9:21 pm
Location: North West England

Re: Flight Monitoring

Mon Jun 05, 2017 7:43 pm

Fantastic replies folks, appreciate you taking the time to reply. May have to just go ahead and get him a Pi and build it for him, or maybe that's taking it too far and allow him to build it himself. :o
Pi Noob, please be gentle

geffers
Posts: 350
Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2012 6:25 am
Location: UK
Contact: Website

Re: Flight Monitoring

Wed Aug 08, 2018 3:43 pm

Took one to California on holiday, fascinating seeing different traffic.

Geffers

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DougieLawson
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Re: Flight Monitoring

Thu Aug 09, 2018 4:49 pm

I'm running PiAware. one day I'm hoping to catch a H47 Chinook from RAF Odiham (EGVO) flying too low over my house. I've already caught a couple of daft callsigns (AIRWOLF1 & AIRWOLF2) out of Odiham. Best aircraft yet was PA474 (BBMF Lancaster) flying over.

Might try taking it abroad next time I get a business trip.
Microprocessor, Raspberry Pi & Arduino Hacker
Mainframe database troubleshooter
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Twitter: @DougieLawson

2012-18: 1B*5, 2B*2, B+, A+, Z, ZW, 3Bs*3, 3B+

Any DMs sent on Twitter will be answered next month.

geffers
Posts: 350
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Re: Flight Monitoring

Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:21 pm

DougieLawson wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 4:49 pm
I'm running PiAware. one day I'm hoping to catch a H47 Chinook from RAF Odiham (EGVO) flying too low over my house. I've already caught a couple of daft callsigns (AIRWOLF1 & AIRWOLF2) out of Odiham. Best aircraft yet was PA474 (BBMF Lancaster) flying over.

Might try taking it abroad next time I get a business trip.
What do you use to view the aircraft, do you go via Flightaware, Flightradar24 , ADSBexchange or some other method?

Geffers

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DougieLawson
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Re: Flight Monitoring

Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:01 am

PiAware installs a bunch of lighttpd pieces. The data (with MLAT) is fed to Flightaware.
Microprocessor, Raspberry Pi & Arduino Hacker
Mainframe database troubleshooter
MQTT Evangelist
Twitter: @DougieLawson

2012-18: 1B*5, 2B*2, B+, A+, Z, ZW, 3Bs*3, 3B+

Any DMs sent on Twitter will be answered next month.

geffers
Posts: 350
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Re: Flight Monitoring

Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:01 am

DougieLawson wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:01 am
PiAware installs a bunch of lighttpd pieces. The data (with MLAT) is fed to Flightaware.
Dougie,

Have a look at Virtual Radar Server, runs on Windows, Mac or Linux. Uses your current set up to produce a much better web display, aircraft details configurable for what you want to see. Different display for mobile or desktop.

You are still keeping Flightaware set up and transferring data to them but VRS interface will give you a much more enjoyable experience. It is not instead of, it is as well as.

Geoff

zardoz99
Posts: 165
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2012 2:25 pm

Re: Flight Monitoring

Sat Aug 18, 2018 2:29 am

For reference, it's possible to run VRS on a RPI3 using "mono" over a PiAware image with all the other requisites installed.

I have a unit feeding Flightaware, FlightRadar24, Planefinder, Radarbox and ADSBExchange as well as running VRS locally.
This is all at sensible CPU and memory loads. It just takes a reasonable bit of work to set up, but it is doable.

geffers
Posts: 350
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Location: UK
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Re: Flight Monitoring

Sat Aug 18, 2018 9:01 am

zardoz99 wrote:
Sat Aug 18, 2018 2:29 am
For reference, it's possible to run VRS on a RPI3 using "mono" over a PiAware image with all the other requisites installed.

I have a unit feeding Flightaware, FlightRadar24, Planefinder, Radarbox and ADSBExchange as well as running VRS locally.
This is all at sensible CPU and memory loads. It just takes a reasonable bit of work to set up, but it is doable.
That is very interesting.

I have two PiAware units, both Zeros, second one is experimental and currently feeds Flightaware, FR24 and ADSBx, have thought about VRS and Mono but thought it might be too much for a Zero.

My Flightaware username is send2gl if you want to have a look at my data

Geoff

BlackKnight_UK
Posts: 64
Joined: Mon Jan 02, 2017 10:51 am

Re: Flight Monitoring

Sat Aug 18, 2018 10:18 am

I have dump1090 on one Pi with an RTL-SDR dongle and an antenna from a radio scanner store. Works as well on the Pi as on a desktop computer.

Like someone else said, its good to know you are receiving the data yourself not downloading it from the internet.

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