Author Topic: Known Good Hardware  (Read 40987 times)


Known Good Hardware
« on: October 02, 2015, 11:00:57 am »
Build Your Own PilotAware Using The Known Good Hardware List

Purchasing and Building Your Own PilotAware Hardware From individual components.

If you don’t want to purchase a warrantied PilotAware unit that has been fully built and tested, then you can build your own PilotAware Hardware by sourcing the individual components from the internet. If you do this, it is very important that you only use the correct parts for the PilotAware unit to work successfully.

Here is a list of components that have been used successfully. PilotAware Limited gives no recommendation or guarantee as to the fidelity of these components nor the viability or vendors quoted, but supplies the list as a guide. Help will be available from the forum as to how to build this. Caveat emptor.
1.   Raspberry Pi 2B Do not use Raspberry pi 3 it will not work.
Raspberry Pi 2 Model B Desktop (Quad Core CPU 900 MHz, 1 GB RAM, Linux).
2.   Case
3.   ADSB Receiver Dongle
Mini USB DVB-T RTL-SDR Realtek RTL2832U & R820T Tuner Receiver Dongle MCX Input.
4.   Wifi dongle:

Updated August 2021

5.   GPS dongle:
6.   USB -> Micro USB power cable:®-Charger-Android-Tablets-Premium/dp/B00S2WQDO0/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1468588337&sr=8-5&keywords=juicebitz
7.   4Gb Micro SD card:
8.   869.5 MHz PilotAware Radio Bridge and licence
9.   869.5 MHz Antenna

When you have all of the parts.

•   Connect the PilotAware Bridge item 8 onto the Raspberry Pi (Item 1) ensuring that you do not bend any of the pins on the PIO Pin matrix
•   Line up the combined Pi and Bridge with the case (Item 2) and drill a hole so that the antenna male connector protrudes through the end plate of the bridge.
•   Screw together the case. (Item2)
•   Insert the Wi-Fi dongle (Item 4) into the bottom right hand USB socket
•   Insert the GPS dongle and thin antenna (Item 5) into the upper right hand USB socket
•   Insert the ADSB Receiver Dongle (Item 3) into the lower left hand USB socket
•   Insert the USB Cable (Item6) into the micro USB socket in the raspberry Pi
•   Screw the 869.6MHz Antenna onto the Bridge stub.
•   Format the SD Card (Item 7)
•   Manually Download the Software onto your PC from,540.0.htmland
•   Transfer this to the formatted Micro SD Card
•   Manual software download described in the PilotAware Operating instructions
•   Download the licence key as described in the documentation provided with the PilotAware Bridge item 8.

Or buy a ready built ready tested built with 12 months warranty for virtually the same price from and save yourself the time and effort of procuring and assembling the box of bits.

« Last Edit: August 13, 2021, 12:32:28 am by exfirepro »


Re: Known Good Hardware
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2018, 10:18:29 am »
I have been using this particular SDR in our Eurostar aircraft for about a year. It’s cable tied to a crossmember behind the panel and connects to the Pi via a 0.5m USB extension cable. It’s performed faultlessly but I’m not aware whether it gets particularly hot. Just placed it there when I “permanently installed” (cable tied) the PAW behind the panel. Seems nicely made.


Re: Known Good Hardware
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2018, 08:52:00 am »
I've just ordered a replacement ADSB antenna.

The original broke at the elbow - probably because when I unscrew from the box, I'm holding the antenna itself rather than the metal screw fastener at the end. This puts a strain on the joint and eventually it came apart and the wire inside broke.

Something for others to beware of!


Re: Known Good Hardware
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2018, 07:59:54 pm »
 Sounds like you are referring to the P3i antenna not the ADSB.  The ADSB antenna is the smaller one which attaches to the SDR dongle.



Re: Known Good Hardware
« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2018, 06:10:02 pm »
I seem to recall that there is a short USB charger cable that has a right angle on the mini bit (and perhaps also the USB end?). Does any have a good link?


Re: Known Good Hardware
« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2018, 10:55:27 pm »
Loads of them on eBay. I use them for demos. Make sure that you get as thick as possible and not tinsel. If the length is about 4 inches it doesn't need to be 20AWG but the thicker the better. No guarantees though.


Re: Known Good Hardware
« Reply #7 on: July 28, 2018, 07:40:18 am »
Juicebitz do one too..

Right angle on the Micro end.. I thinks it's 50cm .. nice purple too (and it's 20AWG)

I coiled the excess up inside the case of the test unit and widened one of the slots in the side to enable the Micro end to poke through … keeps cable clutter to a minimum

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