09/18/20 21:44:16 UTC
294.7 MHz
TAMPA, FL
MAFIA 55 and MAFIA 99 (T-38C Talons) both in the pattern at McDill. JIMBO 1 just landed. Not sure of aircraft type. Handoff was 239.3, 279.6, 294.7.
 
09/18/20 21:02:42 UTC
239.3 MHz
TAMPA, FL
MAFIA 69 (T-38C Talon) up wiith Tampa App. Just switched over to MacDill Tower for landing on 294.7 MHz.
 
09/18/20 18:36:55 UTC
257.8750 MHz
CAPE MAY, NJ
Devil 11 making the approach into Dover AFB
 
09/18/20 13:21:33 UTC
228.4 MHz
DAYTONA BEACH, FL
Townsend Ga bombing range is active. Weak signals.
 
09/16/20 15:55:47 UTC
281.4000 MHz
CAPE MAY, NJ
WILD 3 checking int ZDC 11 Calvert
 

09/18/20 17:10:09 UTC
31.575 MHz
"...that uh, buzzsaw...(unintelligible) friendly..." helo pilot. Weak/spotty rx. PL 151.4. 09/16/2020 1957h-AJ
 
09/16/20 16:11:37 UTC
259.850 MHz
"in the vicinity of that VORTAC" Jet pilot. Ok rx. 09/15/2020 0942h, prev noted on 07/15/20 -AJ
 
09/14/20 13:29:41 UTC
44.325 MHz
A2A comms of 3x H64's traversing Piedmont NC, E to W. Identified as "Helicopter85561 Flight" on KVUJ CTAF call approx 0850h. Discussing where to land and interestingly what the price of fuel was at various airports, as if they were shopping around. Mentioned KJQF, KHKY and KFQD at various points eventually deciding to get fuel and land at KFQD. 09/14/2020, 0850-0910h -AJ
 
09/13/20 16:41:08 UTC
34.800 MHz
Mentioned in A2A comms on 293.0 "Hey 2, this is lead, I'm getting a decent amount of feedback on Forty-Seventy (40.70 FM), so I'm gonna go up to Thirty-Four-Eighty (34.80 FM)" as inter-ship etc. Discussion of making it to KHFF before needing to "goggle up". 09/12/2020 1937h. ID'd as GUARD26278 flight of 3x H60's (KRUQ based) immed prior to KVUJ tower -AJ
 
09/13/20 16:39:59 UTC
293.000 MHz
A2A "Hey 2, this is lead, I'm getting a decent amount of feedback on Forty-Seventy (40.70 FM), so I'm gonna go up to Thirty-Four-Eighty (34.80 FM)" as inter-ship etc. Discussion of making it to KHFF before needing to "goggle up". 09/12/2020 1937h. ID'd as GUARD26278 flight of 3x H60's (KRUQ based) immed prior to KVUJ tower -AJ
 
09/12/20 16:00:45 UTC
122.725 MHz
CTAF/UNICOM for KRUQ, Mid-Carolina Regional Airport (formerly Rowan County Airport), Salisbury, North Carolina, USA. Changed 3-4 years ago. -AJ
 
09/12/20 15:57:03 UTC
122.725 MHz
KNCA NEW RIVER MCAS /H/ /MCCUTCHEON FLD/ NOTAM: M0129/20 - AERODROME EFFECTIVE 11 SEPT AT 1900L CLOSED FIELD COMMUNICATIONS WILL USE UNICOM FREQ 122.725. PILOT CONTROLLED LIGHTING WILL USE FREQ 120.0. 11 SEP 23:00 2020 UNTIL 08 DEC 23:00 2020. CREATED: 10 SEP 14:32 2020 -AJ
 


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Self-Contained Aircraft Radar System For Less Than $100.00

I have been using my $20 ADSB Dongle with a $35 Raspberry Pi computer in a standalone configuration to send military mode-s data to my Live Military Aircraft Mode-S Logger page. Not only does this provide the standard mode-s data as seen on other Mode-S sites, but also provides real-time altitude and signal strength graphs of military aircraft as they fly through my area. Check it out! This is Mode-S data sharing with more detailed info then other sharing sites.

This was my first project using the Raspberry Pi and the Dongle. I used the very same Dongle that I had use in my article Your Own $20 ADSB Aircraft Radar System.

If you don't have any experience using the Raspberry Pi computer you first need to see my article Raspberry Pi - Getting It Ready for Neat Scanner Projects. That article will guide you through installing an operating system, setting up the networking, and getting the Raspberry Pi computer and Dongle to talk to each other.

In this article I will guide you step by step, line by line, key stroke by key stroke on how you can build your own Mode-S Aircraft Transponder monitoring system on a single board computer. When completed it will be smaller than a TV Remote Control!

Picture of the Components Assembled into a Mode-S System
Click on Picture for larger image


A neat thing about the Pi computer is that you can connect to it via Ethernet, WiFi, or simply plug it into the HDMI connector on your TV or monitor. You can connect a mouse and keyboard directy to the Pi as well. We will be using an Ethernet cable as well as WiFi in this article. But below I have included a picture of the function system plugged into my TV just to show that it will work this way.

Below is a picture of the Raspberry Pi connected to a TV Dongle, HiDef TV, keyboard, and a crappy 5" antenna setting ontop of a DVD player. The reason only a few aircraft are being tracked in this picture is because the antenna is only 2 feet above ground level. But it shows that this is possible.

Click on Picture for larger image


This next picture is the Raspberry Pi and TV Dongle connected to my real Mode-S antenna. This is accessing the Raspberry Pi computer via WiFi. One useful project for this type of setup is that you could mount your Pi and Dongle in your attic or on your antenna tower close to the antenna there by getting improved performance since you're not going to have coax loss. Coax loss is a big deal on 1090 MHz! For more info on my real Mode-S antenna Click Here and you can build your own for about $7.00

Click on Picture for larger image


A great thing about the Mode-S software running on the Pi computer is that is it is "OpenSource" and written in the "C" programming language. I've spent nearly 30 years programming in "C" so when time permits I hope to make some modifications to the program and hopefully have it do more....but that is for a later time.

Below I've included step by step instructions so that even someone with limited computer experience can get up and running. This assumes you've already read and done the steps as outlined in Raspberry Pi - Getting It Ready for Neat Scanner Projects.

Download and Install the DUMP1090 Software

  • 1) This is a pretty easy step, simply type the following commands:
    • cd /home/pi/
    • git clone git://github.com/MalcolmRobb/dump1090.git Besure you use Capital Letters where shown!
    • cd dump1090
    • make
    • sudo apt-get install pkg-config
    • make


  • 2) See it work! Type ./dump1090 --interactive making sure you put the 2 dashes before interactive. You should now see a screen with hexcodes and other aircraft info.


I hope you've enjoyed this article.