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Update 9/31/06:  I know this may be obvious to many people, but the range in the air for transmitters of this class is almost limitless.  We've had reports of signals on hot air balloons at 80K feet AGL being copied from over 180 miles away.  GPS Data packets from the BeeLine GPS have been copied from over 20 miles line of site under test conditions, and over 10 miles on the 'real world'.  So what really matters is range on the ground, especially for the beacon.  Typically, on flat ground, with a handheld receiver and yagi antenna, it's possible to pickup a signal from over a mile away.  Your mileage may vary, and is highly dependant on terrain, and the quality of your receiver and antenna.

Update: 3/18/05:  A friend of mine suspended the transmitter about 20' in the air.  From more then 5 miles ways and was able to receive the signal with his HT and stock rubber duck antenna, NO YAGI.  From 20 miles out, using his mobile rig and larger car mounted antenna, he was clearly able to hear the signal !  Don't underestimate the importance of a quality receiver and a large antenna!


I'm in the early stages of getting some hard data on the range of this transmitter.  No launches recently, so I've been trying to get what data I can around my neighborhood.  For the first test, I set the transmitter on the railing on my deck.  Then I drove the top of Mt. Sylvania, and pulled out my VX-5R.  With only a rubber duck antenna, I was able to clearly hear the signal, and the meter deflected 1 'bar'. I'll have to try it with my yagi to see how much better the reception is!

Next, I used the yagi.  Signal was clearly detected over 3 miles away!

Click to enlarge


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