Monitoring while capturing photos and data

caphab1

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Feb 22, 2013
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Mesa, AZ
Hey All.

First off, Admins if this isn't the right or best spot of this, apologies and if you can help me relocate this thread where it belongs.

Have an idea in mind, trying to mix two different hobbies, and it is this. I now live under the KPHX East Approach end, Base leg or south approaches in the heart of Mesa. I own my home so I was trying to see what I would need, if its even possible, to monitor, receive, capture/record, and photograph overhead Aircraft, commercial or private, autonomously, ie without my input, where I could go back and look at records.

Looking at hardware: do I need like an SDR? Yagi, helix, Discone, Small magnet mount for the 1090mhz? Open to everything from DIY to off the shelf.
Software concerns and programming is gonna be big I think. I'm outta my scope of knowledge on this aspect though.

Thanks!
Preston
 

Whiskey3JMC

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I bring my trusty Icom IC-R20 when I spot at PHL. You shouldn't need very much as far as antenna hardware goes if you live within a few miles of the airport. If you need the ATC frequencies I can't speak for the accuracy of the RRDB listing for PHX as there are numerous discrepancies from what's listed on AirNav (Approach, Departure & others) so I always consult the latter site when I visit a new (to me) airfield. Have your Smartphone on hand if you have one and navigate to ADS-B Exchange - track aircraft live so you have advance visual on inbound arrivals before they arrive at the airfield. They'll be advised to check in with tower when they're a few miles out
 
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rivardj

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Dec 19, 2009
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Michigan
Hey All.

First off, Admins if this isn't the right or best spot of this, apologies and if you can help me relocate this thread where it belongs.

Have an idea in mind, trying to mix two different hobbies, and it is this. I now live under the KPHX East Approach end, Base leg or south approaches in the heart of Mesa. I own my home so I was trying to see what I would need, if its even possible, to monitor, receive, capture/record, and photograph overhead Aircraft, commercial or private, autonomously, ie without my input, where I could go back and look at records.

Looking at hardware: do I need like an SDR? Yagi, helix, Discone, Small magnet mount for the 1090mhz? Open to everything from DIY to off the shelf.
Software concerns and programming is gonna be big I think. I'm outta my scope of knowledge on this aspect though.

Thanks!
Preston
Doing that autonomously is going to be a challenge, I have no suggestions.

If you do come up with a system please let us know how you pulled it off.

Good luck.
 

Whiskey3JMC

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Apparently I missed the "autonomously" part. You can certainly utilize flightradar24's playback function or arrivals & departures boards if you want record of past & future arrivals & departures. Autonomous photo taking will be a challenge I'm sure with birds, drones, anything else that flies. I much rather prefer being there, listening & taking the photos myself
 
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RaleighGuy

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Raleigh, NC
I was trying to see what I would need, if its even possible, to monitor, receive, capture/record, and photograph overhead Aircraft, commercial or private, autonomously, ie without my input, where I could go back and look at records.
First of all, you talk about a lot of things all at once, which is okay, but I want to break it down some. It really isn't too difficult to accomplish what you want, though I'm not sure from your post how deep you are trying to go.

A scanner with software like Proscan or a newer scanner like a WS1080/TRX-2 can monitor, receive, capture/record the traffic, obviously you will need an antenna (placement depends on how far you are from airport).

A decent camera and lens (recommend at least a 300mm) to photograph it. Of course, if good quality isn't an issue you could set up an outdoor camera pointed towards the flight path over your home.

And, an SDR and Raspberry Pi with a feed to Airports.Live, Flightaware, Flightradar24 etc will give you the ability to track and log aircraft seen throughout the day. This would also require a 1090 antenna for best results. One example of the setup is here.
 
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