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Antenna Trackers

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Sarie, Jan 10, 2015.

  1. Sarie

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    HI, did anyone use any antenna trackers to follow up their birds. I have been thinking of buying one but I am not sure if they will work with Phantom birds, I have a V+ and Phantom 2 with lightbridge setup. The following are the two options I am considering:

    http://hobbyking.com/hobbyking/store/__ ... ystem.html

    The other one is:

    http://hobbyzone.com.au/antenna%20track ... MyFlyDream

    Of-course there are others in the market, but these seems to be comprehensive systems that works reasonable well. I have seen some videos on youtube where quadcopters multirotors are using these trackers but definitely not my combo setup of birds. Needless to say that I am more inclined to the first one from HobbyKing, but don't want to spend the money if not applicable and/or need to have another type of birds (i.e custom build multirotor) but surely no planes.

    Thanks in advance for reading and feedback.

    Regards,
    Sarie
     
  2. Scottintexas

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    What will you be using the tracker for? I looked at it and I don't get the use. It is awfully heavy (500g). That's going to cut down on flight time. You can get a GPS tracker that weighs about 58g if the purpose is to help you locate a runaway. Or is the antenna tracker to help you spot your aircraft while flying?
     
  3. Sarie

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    Hi Scottintexas, thank you for your response. I do agree with you in terms of tracking the device in case an unfortunate event to locate the bird. However, this is to continuously giving the pilot lock on the bird during flight without having manually to be targeted and aligned towards the bird in flight. Therefore, the trackers will have a transmitter and a receiver that will continuously have a lock on the bird while in flight irrespective of location. Needless to say that it will eliminate signal dropouts unless out of reach and that would be dependant on the antennas setup used in various forms, this will also eliminate the need to have multiple antennas format as one now can locate and revolve ensuring the highest signal towards the bird at all times.

    At least this is my understanding of it as seen on videos and some research.
     
  4. TimmyG94

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    I would love to have something like this for my long-distance P2 Vision+ flights (>1 mile) but I'm not really sure how it works?

    Does it continuously track GPS coordinates of your bird or the radio signal coming from your bird?

    Regardless, I don't think it will work with Vision+ because of two different frequencies being used for FPV and control (2.4 GHz and 5.8 GHz).
     
  5. Sarie

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    Hi TimmyG94, in all fairness I am not sure if it would work or not, however, I saw that it works with different quads on youtube, again the fact about 2.4GHz and 5.8GHz is an issue. However, is it possible to change the TX and RX to 2.4GHz instead the current? If possible then the it might be doable otherwise it might work with the Phantom 2. But I do agree with you that it will give a lot of benefit since it operates on FPV mode and yet be always pointed towards the bird through GPS and radio signal (this is my understanding, but I stand to be corrected as I am still researching it). If you find any more information that could help I appreciate if you could share it.
     
  6. TimmyG94

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    I don't know if these antenna trackers will ever work for me because of the dual frequencies of the Vision+. I have no idea how to change control signal to 2.4 GHz. You'd need a totally different radio, correct?

    I was brainstorming about this problem because I frequently hit my distance limit because of tall trees. In other words, my Vision+ can fly out to 2 miles with my amps + antennas, but I usually can't get this kind of range because of tall trees blocking my signal (unless I fly at really high altitude which I dont want to do). So I was thinking of buying a 2nd Phantom to carry two WiFi repeaters (one each for 2.4 GHz + 5.8 GHz) up above the trees and aim it in the direction of where my primary Vision+ will be flying long distance. I don't see why this couldnt work on a technical level, but the hard part is trying to operate two Phantoms at once, although the "WiFi Repeater" Phantom would just need to hover above the trees and stay aimed in the direction I intend to fly. This would be fairly easy to maintain in GPS mode on calm day with no wind.

    What do you think about this "Two Phantom" idea for long distance flights?
     
  7. varmint

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    Those trackers are designed to work with specific brands of 5.8 Ghz OSD's and VTXs , which would work as long as youre talking about a regular Phantom with a 2.4G controller and a compatible VTX. They send telemetry info over the audio signalencoded with a proprietary format that matches the OSD on board the aircraft. They are totally incompatible with Phantom visions at the most basic level. A tracker for a Phantom Vision would need to be designed for gathering telemetry from the SDK on the phone or tablet, and then shootting the telemetry to a device like an Arduino on the ground which in turn drives the servos.

    It would work, but it would have to be built. I agree it would be useful for getting helicals off the TX and and freeing you from having to worry about pointing. Again, the problem is you can't buy one off the shelf.
     
  8. wattage

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    What about buying an FC-40 (also 5.8GHz control) and hanging your range extender on it? Wacky idea but as long as it was still within range of your Phone/Tablet, you could have it hovering above the trees and pointing the extender towards your V+. On second thoughts, that would only help the FPV side of things.
     
  9. PhantomFanatic

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    My GPS tracker weighs 27 grams, very small, many features. RF-V16 on Ebay
     
  10. PhantomFanatic

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    My suggestion: You and your Phantom, plus transmitter, get into your car or on a bicycle, go two miles and fly from there. :)
     
  11. Sarie

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    During my research I found this video where someone used the NAZA with a tracker, this might be a solution not sure of the detailed setup but it is worth exploring. Below is the video link.

    http://vimeo.com/64390070
     
  12. PhantomFanatic

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    Okay, a serious answer: No.

    Your first Phantom will have to be linked to your transmitter's signal. Your FPV receiver has to be linked to your first phantoms video transmitter. If you used a second phantom to be a Wifi extender, for both 2.4Ghz and 5.8Ghz, then both signals, from the 1st transmitter's control signal and from the second phantom's WiFi extender will be received by the 1st phantom at different times, when in range of the first transmitter.

    Plus, you will have control signals going to the 2nd phantom and the WIFi extenderS will also be transmitting 2.4Ghz and 5.8Ghz, while receiving from both phantoms. How do you keep it from amplifying the strongest signals? Which for 2.4Ghz, will be the 2nd transmitter's signal signal since it will be closer.

    Also, both phantoms will take off from the same point. It will be a nightmare trying to amplify and re-transmit the 1st phantom's signals while the 2nd phantom's signal needs to be ignored. All other ground WiFi signals will have to be ignored by the Wifi amplifiers.

    Can it be done? Yes. But, the cost and custom engineering required would be extensive. Go with my first suggestion! Especially since the coast of gasoline has gone down.

    Now, who is going to compensate me for my migraine that this caused? Seriously, I do have a migraine!
     
  13. PhantomFanatic

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    Timmy, I just noticed that you are the one who asked the question! Now, I am really pissed.

    You called me an idiot and implied I don't have a brain, while I gave an in depth technical answer to YOUR question and, that is how you show your appreciation?? I did get and still have a migraine from trying to help you. You owe me an apology.

    Plus, you say that I ruined the thread. The thread was about trackers. YOU took the thread OT! But, I tried to help.

    A simple thanks would have sufficed.

    Edit: For those who think I've gone insane, there were two posts from Timmy that were not nice and that is what got me upset. His posts have been removed.
     
  14. Scottintexas

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    Thanks. After replying, then thinking about it some more, I realized that the Antenna tracker would not be mounted to the drone, but there at the feet of the operator. Oh well. It seems like a good device if you are going to fly so far out it would be hard to see with the naked eye.
     
  15. Dirby

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    marco polo.