High Powered APRS tracker

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Nov 25, 2009
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Byonics has come out with a high powered (for rocketry) APRS tracking transmitter that could conceivably be used in a large, very high flying project.
Two watts output on a 9V power supply in the 2 meter Ham band would carry quite a long distance. The ground footprint of such a device would be
large in an open area: https://byonics.com/mt-2000

This would be a DIY situation too. One would have to get a GPS chipset (which isn't that hard to do), wire it in and program the device. A quarter wave antenna
on 2 meters would be attached to the SMA connector along with a sufficient power supply. Most modern GPS chipsets run on less than the 5V that are available
on the board of this device so another voltage regulator would have to be added to get it down to 3.3V. Could use a Ublox chipset like I have jury rigged into
a couple of early version EggFinders that have 3.3V available on the board. (Those two EFs had broken GPS receivers so I took a chance and sucessfully salvaged them with Ublox chipsets.)

The only other high powered drop in tracker I know of is the AP510 at 1.1 watt output on the 2m Ham Band. With the Sirf IV chipset, not good for altitude reporting with
a high dynamic rocket flight but very accurate with the terrestial positioning.

A lot of the modern deployment electronics for rocketry employ opto-isolation now that makes the devices resistant to high powered Rf fields which can make the use
of the more powerful trackers possible.

Just another "tool" that's out there for an extreme situation. Perhaps 2 to 5% of the fliers out there might find this interesting. Kurt

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