Date   

Re: TrackSoar

Barry
 

Try leaving the tracker on longer. I’m going from memory, but I believe the GPS LED is simply tied to the 1 PPS output and it may blink regardless of whether the GPS has lock or not. The first time you power up the tracker I’m guessing the so called PTT LED may remain bright until the GPS gets a lock as the tracker processor will be constantly on (ie. not entering sleep mode to save power) until lock is achieved and if the GPS hasn’t been powered on for some time and doesn’t yet have a complete almanac saved this may take up to 10 to 15 minutes. After this the GPS will be able to get a lock much faster, like less than a minute.

 

Barry
VE6SBS

 

From: GPSL@groups.io [mailto:GPSL@groups.io] On Behalf Of L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
Sent: Sunday, March 31, 2019 3:04 PM
To: GPSL@groups.io
Subject: Re: [GPSL] TrackSoar

 

Dang speech to text. The LED was on constantly for the 30 seconds I watched it. I turned off the tracker after watching it for 30 seconds.

 

On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 2:53 PM L. Paul Verhage KD4STH via Groups.Io <nearsys=gmail.com@groups.io> wrote:

The LED was on constantly until I turned it off the only did was not blinking for 30 seconds.

 

On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 1:17 PM Barry <barry2@...> wrote:

If you mean the PTT LED is alternately on for 30 sec’s and then off for 30 sec’s you have definitely have a problem. And although it’s called a PTT LED it isn’t really a true PTT LED, but actually monitors the processor activity and is basically ON all the time.

 

From my web page at http://bear.sbszoo.com/construction/traker/Tracksoar/V1-1.htm -

The PTT LED, although it becomes bright around the time of each transmission, actually indicates when the processor is awake and busy processing instructions which is why it's dimly lit between transmissions when the processor is only awake very briefly to check if it's time for another transmission each time GPS data is received and then brightens when it's time to make a transmission and the processor remains awake for much longer. After adding the 4th new feature this LED also becomes bright every 10 sec's when the processor is kept awake while checking the altitude and for a burst which makes it hard to know when a transmission actually occurs so a configuration setting was added that allows the PTT LED to be used as either a processor activity indicator or as a real PTT indicator that's only on during a transmission.

 

My web page also has a link to my modified firmware that gives one the option to make the LED a true PTT indicator as well as to add a number of other useful features (at least I found them useful.)

 

I haven’t worked with the Tracksoar since I wrote that page in 2016 and can’t remember exactly how the so called PTT LED behaves under certain conditions so can’t help much more than above and what’s on my page.

 

Are you sure that you replaced the jumper, or jumpers, that you removed to program the unit after adding your callsign etc. to the config file?

 

The one thing I meant to check out after trying to locate a landed payload and never hearing any further transmissions after it landed was whether the Tracksoar would continue to transmit, or not, the last good data received from the gps if the gps lost lock and was unable to receive any further good data.

 

Barry
VE6SBS

 

From: GPSL@groups.io [mailto:GPSL@groups.io] On Behalf Of L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
Sent: Sunday, March 31, 2019 9:56 AM
To: GPSL@groups.io
Subject: Re: [GPSL] TrackSoar

 

I'll try testing that. My D72 doesn't even break squelch, so I was thinking the TrackSoar wasn't even trying to transmit.

 

I had one suggestion to remove the comment statements and then look at debug statements. That means learning more about C for the Arduino. I can at least edit a sketch and upload it. Today I guess I'm going to learn more.

 

On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 9:41 AM Mark Conner N9XTN <mconner1@...> wrote:

I have an older Kenwood TH-D7A that has trouble decoding packets that have a short TXD, especially when the squelch is turned on.  I don't know if the D72 has the same issues.  You can try running your D72 with open squelch and see if that helps.  If not, can the TXD for the TrackSoar be increased?

 

73 de Mark N9XTN

 

 

On Sat, Mar 30, 2019 at 7:38 PM L. Paul Verhage KD4STH <nearsys@...> wrote:

I'm testing a TrackSoar APRS tracker before near space season begins in earnest. If you haven't seen one of these, it's a small board with GPS, GPS antenna, transmitter, Arduino, and two meter antenna. It runs from 2 'AA'  cells. You program it's Audrino with your callsign and it's ready to go.

 

Anyhow, I wonder if anyone is using one as I'm having a problem with mine. I see that it has a GPS lock (the GPS LED illuminates once per second) and that it's trying to transmit ( the PTT LED illuminates for 30 seconds on and off). However, my Kenwood D72 doesn't hear anything. My D72 does decode packets from my other trackers, including a Strato Track.

 

So if you have any experience with the TrackSoar, could you let me know?

 

Thanks


Re: TrackSoar

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
 

Dang speech to text. The LED was on constantly for the 30 seconds I watched it. I turned off the tracker after watching it for 30 seconds.


On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 2:53 PM L. Paul Verhage KD4STH via Groups.Io <nearsys=gmail.com@groups.io> wrote:
The LED was on constantly until I turned it off the only did was not blinking for 30 seconds.

On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 1:17 PM Barry <barry2@...> wrote:

If you mean the PTT LED is alternately on for 30 sec’s and then off for 30 sec’s you have definitely have a problem. And although it’s called a PTT LED it isn’t really a true PTT LED, but actually monitors the processor activity and is basically ON all the time.

 

From my web page at http://bear.sbszoo.com/construction/traker/Tracksoar/V1-1.htm -

The PTT LED, although it becomes bright around the time of each transmission, actually indicates when the processor is awake and busy processing instructions which is why it's dimly lit between transmissions when the processor is only awake very briefly to check if it's time for another transmission each time GPS data is received and then brightens when it's time to make a transmission and the processor remains awake for much longer. After adding the 4th new feature this LED also becomes bright every 10 sec's when the processor is kept awake while checking the altitude and for a burst which makes it hard to know when a transmission actually occurs so a configuration setting was added that allows the PTT LED to be used as either a processor activity indicator or as a real PTT indicator that's only on during a transmission.

 

My web page also has a link to my modified firmware that gives one the option to make the LED a true PTT indicator as well as to add a number of other useful features (at least I found them useful.)

 

I haven’t worked with the Tracksoar since I wrote that page in 2016 and can’t remember exactly how the so called PTT LED behaves under certain conditions so can’t help much more than above and what’s on my page.

 

Are you sure that you replaced the jumper, or jumpers, that you removed to program the unit after adding your callsign etc. to the config file?

 

The one thing I meant to check out after trying to locate a landed payload and never hearing any further transmissions after it landed was whether the Tracksoar would continue to transmit, or not, the last good data received from the gps if the gps lost lock and was unable to receive any further good data.

 

Barry
VE6SBS

 

From: GPSL@groups.io [mailto:GPSL@groups.io] On Behalf Of L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
Sent: Sunday, March 31, 2019 9:56 AM
To: GPSL@groups.io
Subject: Re: [GPSL] TrackSoar

 

I'll try testing that. My D72 doesn't even break squelch, so I was thinking the TrackSoar wasn't even trying to transmit.

 

I had one suggestion to remove the comment statements and then look at debug statements. That means learning more about C for the Arduino. I can at least edit a sketch and upload it. Today I guess I'm going to learn more.

 

On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 9:41 AM Mark Conner N9XTN <mconner1@...> wrote:

I have an older Kenwood TH-D7A that has trouble decoding packets that have a short TXD, especially when the squelch is turned on.  I don't know if the D72 has the same issues.  You can try running your D72 with open squelch and see if that helps.  If not, can the TXD for the TrackSoar be increased?

 

73 de Mark N9XTN

 

 

On Sat, Mar 30, 2019 at 7:38 PM L. Paul Verhage KD4STH <nearsys@...> wrote:

I'm testing a TrackSoar APRS tracker before near space season begins in earnest. If you haven't seen one of these, it's a small board with GPS, GPS antenna, transmitter, Arduino, and two meter antenna. It runs from 2 'AA'  cells. You program it's Audrino with your callsign and it's ready to go.

 

Anyhow, I wonder if anyone is using one as I'm having a problem with mine. I see that it has a GPS lock (the GPS LED illuminates once per second) and that it's trying to transmit ( the PTT LED illuminates for 30 seconds on and off). However, my Kenwood D72 doesn't hear anything. My D72 does decode packets from my other trackers, including a Strato Track.

 

So if you have any experience with the TrackSoar, could you let me know?

 

Thanks


Re: TrackSoar

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
 

The LED was on constantly until I turned it off the only did was not blinking for 30 seconds.


On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 1:17 PM Barry <barry2@...> wrote:

If you mean the PTT LED is alternately on for 30 sec’s and then off for 30 sec’s you have definitely have a problem. And although it’s called a PTT LED it isn’t really a true PTT LED, but actually monitors the processor activity and is basically ON all the time.

 

From my web page at http://bear.sbszoo.com/construction/traker/Tracksoar/V1-1.htm -

The PTT LED, although it becomes bright around the time of each transmission, actually indicates when the processor is awake and busy processing instructions which is why it's dimly lit between transmissions when the processor is only awake very briefly to check if it's time for another transmission each time GPS data is received and then brightens when it's time to make a transmission and the processor remains awake for much longer. After adding the 4th new feature this LED also becomes bright every 10 sec's when the processor is kept awake while checking the altitude and for a burst which makes it hard to know when a transmission actually occurs so a configuration setting was added that allows the PTT LED to be used as either a processor activity indicator or as a real PTT indicator that's only on during a transmission.

 

My web page also has a link to my modified firmware that gives one the option to make the LED a true PTT indicator as well as to add a number of other useful features (at least I found them useful.)

 

I haven’t worked with the Tracksoar since I wrote that page in 2016 and can’t remember exactly how the so called PTT LED behaves under certain conditions so can’t help much more than above and what’s on my page.

 

Are you sure that you replaced the jumper, or jumpers, that you removed to program the unit after adding your callsign etc. to the config file?

 

The one thing I meant to check out after trying to locate a landed payload and never hearing any further transmissions after it landed was whether the Tracksoar would continue to transmit, or not, the last good data received from the gps if the gps lost lock and was unable to receive any further good data.

 

Barry
VE6SBS

 

From: GPSL@groups.io [mailto:GPSL@groups.io] On Behalf Of L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
Sent: Sunday, March 31, 2019 9:56 AM
To: GPSL@groups.io
Subject: Re: [GPSL] TrackSoar

 

I'll try testing that. My D72 doesn't even break squelch, so I was thinking the TrackSoar wasn't even trying to transmit.

 

I had one suggestion to remove the comment statements and then look at debug statements. That means learning more about C for the Arduino. I can at least edit a sketch and upload it. Today I guess I'm going to learn more.

 

On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 9:41 AM Mark Conner N9XTN <mconner1@...> wrote:

I have an older Kenwood TH-D7A that has trouble decoding packets that have a short TXD, especially when the squelch is turned on.  I don't know if the D72 has the same issues.  You can try running your D72 with open squelch and see if that helps.  If not, can the TXD for the TrackSoar be increased?

 

73 de Mark N9XTN

 

 

On Sat, Mar 30, 2019 at 7:38 PM L. Paul Verhage KD4STH <nearsys@...> wrote:

I'm testing a TrackSoar APRS tracker before near space season begins in earnest. If you haven't seen one of these, it's a small board with GPS, GPS antenna, transmitter, Arduino, and two meter antenna. It runs from 2 'AA'  cells. You program it's Audrino with your callsign and it's ready to go.

 

Anyhow, I wonder if anyone is using one as I'm having a problem with mine. I see that it has a GPS lock (the GPS LED illuminates once per second) and that it's trying to transmit ( the PTT LED illuminates for 30 seconds on and off). However, my Kenwood D72 doesn't hear anything. My D72 does decode packets from my other trackers, including a Strato Track.

 

So if you have any experience with the TrackSoar, could you let me know?

 

Thanks


Re: TrackSoar

Barry
 

If you mean the PTT LED is alternately on for 30 sec’s and then off for 30 sec’s you have definitely have a problem. And although it’s called a PTT LED it isn’t really a true PTT LED, but actually monitors the processor activity and is basically ON all the time.

 

From my web page at http://bear.sbszoo.com/construction/traker/Tracksoar/V1-1.htm -

The PTT LED, although it becomes bright around the time of each transmission, actually indicates when the processor is awake and busy processing instructions which is why it's dimly lit between transmissions when the processor is only awake very briefly to check if it's time for another transmission each time GPS data is received and then brightens when it's time to make a transmission and the processor remains awake for much longer. After adding the 4th new feature this LED also becomes bright every 10 sec's when the processor is kept awake while checking the altitude and for a burst which makes it hard to know when a transmission actually occurs so a configuration setting was added that allows the PTT LED to be used as either a processor activity indicator or as a real PTT indicator that's only on during a transmission.

 

My web page also has a link to my modified firmware that gives one the option to make the LED a true PTT indicator as well as to add a number of other useful features (at least I found them useful.)

 

I haven’t worked with the Tracksoar since I wrote that page in 2016 and can’t remember exactly how the so called PTT LED behaves under certain conditions so can’t help much more than above and what’s on my page.

 

Are you sure that you replaced the jumper, or jumpers, that you removed to program the unit after adding your callsign etc. to the config file?

 

The one thing I meant to check out after trying to locate a landed payload and never hearing any further transmissions after it landed was whether the Tracksoar would continue to transmit, or not, the last good data received from the gps if the gps lost lock and was unable to receive any further good data.

 

Barry
VE6SBS

 

From: GPSL@groups.io [mailto:GPSL@groups.io] On Behalf Of L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
Sent: Sunday, March 31, 2019 9:56 AM
To: GPSL@groups.io
Subject: Re: [GPSL] TrackSoar

 

I'll try testing that. My D72 doesn't even break squelch, so I was thinking the TrackSoar wasn't even trying to transmit.

 

I had one suggestion to remove the comment statements and then look at debug statements. That means learning more about C for the Arduino. I can at least edit a sketch and upload it. Today I guess I'm going to learn more.

 

On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 9:41 AM Mark Conner N9XTN <mconner1@...> wrote:

I have an older Kenwood TH-D7A that has trouble decoding packets that have a short TXD, especially when the squelch is turned on.  I don't know if the D72 has the same issues.  You can try running your D72 with open squelch and see if that helps.  If not, can the TXD for the TrackSoar be increased?

 

73 de Mark N9XTN

 

 

On Sat, Mar 30, 2019 at 7:38 PM L. Paul Verhage KD4STH <nearsys@...> wrote:

I'm testing a TrackSoar APRS tracker before near space season begins in earnest. If you haven't seen one of these, it's a small board with GPS, GPS antenna, transmitter, Arduino, and two meter antenna. It runs from 2 'AA'  cells. You program it's Audrino with your callsign and it's ready to go.

 

Anyhow, I wonder if anyone is using one as I'm having a problem with mine. I see that it has a GPS lock (the GPS LED illuminates once per second) and that it's trying to transmit ( the PTT LED illuminates for 30 seconds on and off). However, my Kenwood D72 doesn't hear anything. My D72 does decode packets from my other trackers, including a Strato Track.

 

So if you have any experience with the TrackSoar, could you let me know?

 

Thanks


Re: TrackSoar

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
 

I'll try testing that. My D72 doesn't even break squelch, so I was thinking the TrackSoar wasn't even trying to transmit.

I had one suggestion to remove the comment statements and then look at debug statements. That means learning more about C for the Arduino. I can at least edit a sketch and upload it. Today I guess I'm going to learn more.

On Sun, Mar 31, 2019, 9:41 AM Mark Conner N9XTN <mconner1@...> wrote:
I have an older Kenwood TH-D7A that has trouble decoding packets that have a short TXD, especially when the squelch is turned on.  I don't know if the D72 has the same issues.  You can try running your D72 with open squelch and see if that helps.  If not, can the TXD for the TrackSoar be increased?

73 de Mark N9XTN


On Sat, Mar 30, 2019 at 7:38 PM L. Paul Verhage KD4STH <nearsys@...> wrote:
I'm testing a TrackSoar APRS tracker before near space season begins in earnest. If you haven't seen one of these, it's a small board with GPS, GPS antenna, transmitter, Arduino, and two meter antenna. It runs from 2 'AA'  cells. You program it's Audrino with your callsign and it's ready to go.

Anyhow, I wonder if anyone is using one as I'm having a problem with mine. I see that it has a GPS lock (the GPS LED illuminates once per second) and that it's trying to transmit ( the PTT LED illuminates for 30 seconds on and off). However, my Kenwood D72 doesn't hear anything. My D72 does decode packets from my other trackers, including a Strato Track.

So if you have any experience with the TrackSoar, could you let me know?

Thanks


Re: TrackSoar

Mark Conner N9XTN
 

I have an older Kenwood TH-D7A that has trouble decoding packets that have a short TXD, especially when the squelch is turned on.  I don't know if the D72 has the same issues.  You can try running your D72 with open squelch and see if that helps.  If not, can the TXD for the TrackSoar be increased?

73 de Mark N9XTN


On Sat, Mar 30, 2019 at 7:38 PM L. Paul Verhage KD4STH <nearsys@...> wrote:
I'm testing a TrackSoar APRS tracker before near space season begins in earnest. If you haven't seen one of these, it's a small board with GPS, GPS antenna, transmitter, Arduino, and two meter antenna. It runs from 2 'AA'  cells. You program it's Audrino with your callsign and it's ready to go.

Anyhow, I wonder if anyone is using one as I'm having a problem with mine. I see that it has a GPS lock (the GPS LED illuminates once per second) and that it's trying to transmit ( the PTT LED illuminates for 30 seconds on and off). However, my Kenwood D72 doesn't hear anything. My D72 does decode packets from my other trackers, including a Strato Track.

So if you have any experience with the TrackSoar, could you let me know?

Thanks


TrackSoar

L. Paul Verhage KD4STH
 

I'm testing a TrackSoar APRS tracker before near space season begins in earnest. If you haven't seen one of these, it's a small board with GPS, GPS antenna, transmitter, Arduino, and two meter antenna. It runs from 2 'AA'  cells. You program it's Audrino with your callsign and it's ready to go.

Anyhow, I wonder if anyone is using one as I'm having a problem with mine. I see that it has a GPS lock (the GPS LED illuminates once per second) and that it's trying to transmit ( the PTT LED illuminates for 30 seconds on and off). However, my Kenwood D72 doesn't hear anything. My D72 does decode packets from my other trackers, including a Strato Track.

So if you have any experience with the TrackSoar, could you let me know?

Thanks


Re: MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Leo Bodnar <leo@...>
 

You don't need RFI interference in GPS L1 band to disable GPS.

Ublox MAX-8Q and all other MAX series modules do not have *any* antenna input preselector filtering - just an impedance match.  Their antenna input is attached to on-chip LNA followed by a mixer.  Imagine bypassing all the bandpass filters in your HAM rig and trying to listen to DX station close to a powerful nearby broadband transmitter.

For complex payloads I would suggest using either module with internal filter - like NEO - or simply placing a GPS band SAW filter between the antenna and the module.  Having only a few dB insertion loss It would not hurt the sensitivity but can help with nearby out of band EMI.  If you really need these few extra dB back take it out and bypass it with a short piece of wire.

Cheers
Leo

On 24 Mar 2019, at 02:55, Bill Brown via Groups.Io wrote:

Hi Zack,

  Digital cameras are a huge source of EMI to desense GPS receivers. I always try to keep about 6 to 10 feet of isolation between GPS trackers and camera payloads. Aluminum shielding on the top or bottom of the camera payload is also a good idea.

  By identical sister do you mean the other board also uses the MAX-8Q or does it use some other version of the MAX series?  In the case of the MAX-8Q if you don't send it the command to only use the US GPS constellation, it will also use the Chinese and Russian GPS sytems and will access more satellites. That might help.

- Bill WB8ELK

I use the MAX-7Q and MAX-8Q almost exclusively now. However, for extreme EMI environments such as coexisting next to an ATV transmitter with digital cameras, then I use the Trimble Copernicus module as it is a lot more impervious to EMI effects. I still offer them every once in awhile for folks using ATV on gliders or RC aircraft as well as ATV payload on balloons.


-----Original Message-----
From: Michael <mw@...>
To: GPSL <GPSL@groups.io>
Sent: Sat, Mar 23, 2019 11:58 am
Subject: Re: [GPSL] MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Looks like you have an EMI issue, try wrapping the cameras with aluminum foil with just a small hole for the lens as small as you can get it without interfering with the view. Most likely your cameras are using a frequency that has a harmonic on the GPS frequency and with a GPS having say 165db of sensitivity, you pretty much can not get far enough away on a flight string to realize some impact, but more shielding and space will likely help. 

--Michael Willett
K5NOT

On Mar 23, 2019, at 11:08 AM, Zack Clobes W0ZC <zclobes@...> wrote:

I'm looking for some ideas on troubleshooting some lock problems on a new board/capsule/camera design.  The board has worked well during testing up until I started integration testing with the actual capsule with the cameras under it.  

The capsule is about 6cm thick and is mostly two layers of foam.  There are two cameras sandwiched in the middle and there is an aluminum bar holding them in place.  The GPS antenna is as far away from that as I can get.  Lid open or lid closed doesn't seem to make any difference.

During testing I noticed that this board would take a lot longer to get a lock than it's identical sister.  Initially I thought it was a bad GPS or antenna, and eventually replaced both.  Then I noticed if I unplug an external (optics) sensor, the GPS would lock up almost immediately.

So I nixed the sensor at the 11th hour and went flying.  The GPS never locked on a single time during the whole flight.  There's about 2m of separation to the next capsule.


This morning I plugged everything back in just like it flew, and it immediately got a lock.  The only thing I noticed was that after powering up the cameras, the altitude was reading about 100 meters high.  But I still had 5-9 sats.


I'm running low on ideas on what to try to isolate this problem. 


Zack
<IMG_20190319_163333.jpg>
<IMG_20190319_163351.jpg>


Re: MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Bill Brown
 

Hi Zack,

  Digital cameras are a huge source of EMI to desense GPS receivers. I always try to keep about 6 to 10 feet of isolation between GPS trackers and camera payloads. Aluminum shielding on the top or bottom of the camera payload is also a good idea.

  By identical sister do you mean the other board also uses the MAX-8Q or does it use some other version of the MAX series?  In the case of the MAX-8Q if you don't send it the command to only use the US GPS constellation, it will also use the Chinese and Russian GPS sytems and will access more satellites. That might help.

- Bill WB8ELK

I use the MAX-7Q and MAX-8Q almost exclusively now. However, for extreme EMI environments such as coexisting next to an ATV transmitter with digital cameras, then I use the Trimble Copernicus module as it is a lot more impervious to EMI effects. I still offer them every once in awhile for folks using ATV on gliders or RC aircraft as well as ATV payload on balloons.


-----Original Message-----
From: Michael <mw@...>
To: GPSL <GPSL@groups.io>
Sent: Sat, Mar 23, 2019 11:58 am
Subject: Re: [GPSL] MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Looks like you have an EMI issue, try wrapping the cameras with aluminum foil with just a small hole for the lens as small as you can get it without interfering with the view. Most likely your cameras are using a frequency that has a harmonic on the GPS frequency and with a GPS having say 165db of sensitivity, you pretty much can not get far enough away on a flight string to realize some impact, but more shielding and space will likely help. 

--Michael Willett
K5NOT

On Mar 23, 2019, at 11:08 AM, Zack Clobes W0ZC <zclobes@...> wrote:

I'm looking for some ideas on troubleshooting some lock problems on a new board/capsule/camera design.  The board has worked well during testing up until I started integration testing with the actual capsule with the cameras under it.  

The capsule is about 6cm thick and is mostly two layers of foam.  There are two cameras sandwiched in the middle and there is an aluminum bar holding them in place.  The GPS antenna is as far away from that as I can get.  Lid open or lid closed doesn't seem to make any difference.

During testing I noticed that this board would take a lot longer to get a lock than it's identical sister.  Initially I thought it was a bad GPS or antenna, and eventually replaced both.  Then I noticed if I unplug an external (optics) sensor, the GPS would lock up almost immediately.

So I nixed the sensor at the 11th hour and went flying.  The GPS never locked on a single time during the whole flight.  There's about 2m of separation to the next capsule.


This morning I plugged everything back in just like it flew, and it immediately got a lock.  The only thing I noticed was that after powering up the cameras, the altitude was reading about 100 meters high.  But I still had 5-9 sats.


I'm running low on ideas on what to try to isolate this problem. 


Zack
<IMG_20190319_163333.jpg>
<IMG_20190319_163351.jpg>


Re: MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Michael
 

Troubleshooting EMI can be fun... try doing this while at an FCC lab where the clock is ticking $$$ and you are calculating beat frequencies on almost unrelated things in a system to get a clue why/who is causing issues, and when you get the thing to pass it is not pretty but you have a clue and go back to the lab and implement changes that production can also implement and go back to the FCC lab with fingers crossed that you solved the issue. That is why they invented anti-anxiety drugs. :)

--Michael Willett

On Mar 23, 2019, at 12:36 PM, Zack Clobes W0ZC <zclobes@...> wrote:

Most of my testing that I did was with the cameras powered down.  

That's what is throwing me on this one - sensor seems to cause problems so I yank that, then it seems like the cameras are doing it, but I remind myself that I didn't have them turned in through most of the testing.  

I do have E/H probes on their way for the spectrum analyzer.  


I need to recharge the battery then I'll try the foil to see if it changes anything...

Zack

On Sat, Mar 23, 2019, 12:31 PM Jeff Ducklow <jeffducklow@...> wrote:
I second Micheal's advice. I once had an EMI issue with a GoPro camera not allowing a GPS lock. My solution involved the cover from an Altoids tin. Once I had enough metal between the GPS unit the GoPro I was back in business.

Jeff Ducklow
N0NQN

On March 23, 2019 at 11:58 AM Michael <mw@...> wrote:

Looks like you have an EMI issue, try wrapping the cameras with aluminum foil with just a small hole for the lens as small as you can get it without interfering with the view. Most likely your cameras are using a frequency that has a harmonic on the GPS frequency and with a GPS having say 165db of sensitivity, you pretty much can not get far enough away on a flight string to realize some impact, but more shielding and space will likely help. 

--Michael Willett
K5NOT

On Mar 23, 2019, at 11:08 AM, Zack Clobes W0ZC < zclobes@...> wrote:

I'm looking for some ideas on troubleshooting some lock problems on a new board/capsule/camera design.  The board has worked well during testing up until I started integration testing with the actual capsule with the cameras under it.  

The capsule is about 6cm thick and is mostly two layers of foam.  There are two cameras sandwiched in the middle and there is an aluminum bar holding them in place.  The GPS antenna is as far away from that as I can get.  Lid open or lid closed doesn't seem to make any difference.

During testing I noticed that this board would take a lot longer to get a lock than it's identical sister.  Initially I thought it was a bad GPS or antenna, and eventually replaced both.  Then I noticed if I unplug an external (optics) sensor, the GPS would lock up almost immediately.

So I nixed the sensor at the 11th hour and went flying.  The GPS never locked on a single time during the whole flight.  There's about 2m of separation to the next capsule.


This morning I plugged everything back in just like it flew, and it immediately got a lock.  The only thing I noticed was that after powering up the cameras, the altitude was reading about 100 meters high.  But I still had 5-9 sats.


I'm running low on ideas on what to try to isolate this problem. 


Zack
<IMG_20190319_163333.jpg>
<IMG_20190319_163351.jpg>

 

 


Re: MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Zack Clobes W0ZC
 

Most of my testing that I did was with the cameras powered down.  

That's what is throwing me on this one - sensor seems to cause problems so I yank that, then it seems like the cameras are doing it, but I remind myself that I didn't have them turned in through most of the testing.  

I do have E/H probes on their way for the spectrum analyzer.  


I need to recharge the battery then I'll try the foil to see if it changes anything...

Zack


On Sat, Mar 23, 2019, 12:31 PM Jeff Ducklow <jeffducklow@...> wrote:
I second Micheal's advice. I once had an EMI issue with a GoPro camera not allowing a GPS lock. My solution involved the cover from an Altoids tin. Once I had enough metal between the GPS unit the GoPro I was back in business.

Jeff Ducklow
N0NQN

On March 23, 2019 at 11:58 AM Michael <mw@...> wrote:

Looks like you have an EMI issue, try wrapping the cameras with aluminum foil with just a small hole for the lens as small as you can get it without interfering with the view. Most likely your cameras are using a frequency that has a harmonic on the GPS frequency and with a GPS having say 165db of sensitivity, you pretty much can not get far enough away on a flight string to realize some impact, but more shielding and space will likely help. 

--Michael Willett
K5NOT

On Mar 23, 2019, at 11:08 AM, Zack Clobes W0ZC < zclobes@...> wrote:

I'm looking for some ideas on troubleshooting some lock problems on a new board/capsule/camera design.  The board has worked well during testing up until I started integration testing with the actual capsule with the cameras under it.  

The capsule is about 6cm thick and is mostly two layers of foam.  There are two cameras sandwiched in the middle and there is an aluminum bar holding them in place.  The GPS antenna is as far away from that as I can get.  Lid open or lid closed doesn't seem to make any difference.

During testing I noticed that this board would take a lot longer to get a lock than it's identical sister.  Initially I thought it was a bad GPS or antenna, and eventually replaced both.  Then I noticed if I unplug an external (optics) sensor, the GPS would lock up almost immediately.

So I nixed the sensor at the 11th hour and went flying.  The GPS never locked on a single time during the whole flight.  There's about 2m of separation to the next capsule.


This morning I plugged everything back in just like it flew, and it immediately got a lock.  The only thing I noticed was that after powering up the cameras, the altitude was reading about 100 meters high.  But I still had 5-9 sats.


I'm running low on ideas on what to try to isolate this problem. 


Zack
<IMG_20190319_163333.jpg>
<IMG_20190319_163351.jpg>

 

 


Re: MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Jeff Ducklow
 

I second Micheal's advice. I once had an EMI issue with a GoPro camera not allowing a GPS lock. My solution involved the cover from an Altoids tin. Once I had enough metal between the GPS unit the GoPro I was back in business.

Jeff Ducklow
N0NQN

On March 23, 2019 at 11:58 AM Michael <mw@...> wrote:

Looks like you have an EMI issue, try wrapping the cameras with aluminum foil with just a small hole for the lens as small as you can get it without interfering with the view. Most likely your cameras are using a frequency that has a harmonic on the GPS frequency and with a GPS having say 165db of sensitivity, you pretty much can not get far enough away on a flight string to realize some impact, but more shielding and space will likely help. 

--Michael Willett
K5NOT

On Mar 23, 2019, at 11:08 AM, Zack Clobes W0ZC < zclobes@...> wrote:

I'm looking for some ideas on troubleshooting some lock problems on a new board/capsule/camera design.  The board has worked well during testing up until I started integration testing with the actual capsule with the cameras under it.  

The capsule is about 6cm thick and is mostly two layers of foam.  There are two cameras sandwiched in the middle and there is an aluminum bar holding them in place.  The GPS antenna is as far away from that as I can get.  Lid open or lid closed doesn't seem to make any difference.

During testing I noticed that this board would take a lot longer to get a lock than it's identical sister.  Initially I thought it was a bad GPS or antenna, and eventually replaced both.  Then I noticed if I unplug an external (optics) sensor, the GPS would lock up almost immediately.

So I nixed the sensor at the 11th hour and went flying.  The GPS never locked on a single time during the whole flight.  There's about 2m of separation to the next capsule.


This morning I plugged everything back in just like it flew, and it immediately got a lock.  The only thing I noticed was that after powering up the cameras, the altitude was reading about 100 meters high.  But I still had 5-9 sats.


I'm running low on ideas on what to try to isolate this problem. 


Zack
<IMG_20190319_163333.jpg>
<IMG_20190319_163351.jpg>

 

 


Re: MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Michael
 

Looks like you have an EMI issue, try wrapping the cameras with aluminum foil with just a small hole for the lens as small as you can get it without interfering with the view. Most likely your cameras are using a frequency that has a harmonic on the GPS frequency and with a GPS having say 165db of sensitivity, you pretty much can not get far enough away on a flight string to realize some impact, but more shielding and space will likely help. 

--Michael Willett
K5NOT

On Mar 23, 2019, at 11:08 AM, Zack Clobes W0ZC <zclobes@...> wrote:

I'm looking for some ideas on troubleshooting some lock problems on a new board/capsule/camera design.  The board has worked well during testing up until I started integration testing with the actual capsule with the cameras under it.  

The capsule is about 6cm thick and is mostly two layers of foam.  There are two cameras sandwiched in the middle and there is an aluminum bar holding them in place.  The GPS antenna is as far away from that as I can get.  Lid open or lid closed doesn't seem to make any difference.

During testing I noticed that this board would take a lot longer to get a lock than it's identical sister.  Initially I thought it was a bad GPS or antenna, and eventually replaced both.  Then I noticed if I unplug an external (optics) sensor, the GPS would lock up almost immediately.

So I nixed the sensor at the 11th hour and went flying.  The GPS never locked on a single time during the whole flight.  There's about 2m of separation to the next capsule.


This morning I plugged everything back in just like it flew, and it immediately got a lock.  The only thing I noticed was that after powering up the cameras, the altitude was reading about 100 meters high.  But I still had 5-9 sats.


I'm running low on ideas on what to try to isolate this problem. 


Zack
<IMG_20190319_163333.jpg>
<IMG_20190319_163351.jpg>


MAX-M8Q GPS lock problem

Zack Clobes W0ZC
 

I'm looking for some ideas on troubleshooting some lock problems on a new board/capsule/camera design.  The board has worked well during testing up until I started integration testing with the actual capsule with the cameras under it.  

The capsule is about 6cm thick and is mostly two layers of foam.  There are two cameras sandwiched in the middle and there is an aluminum bar holding them in place.  The GPS antenna is as far away from that as I can get.  Lid open or lid closed doesn't seem to make any difference.

During testing I noticed that this board would take a lot longer to get a lock than it's identical sister.  Initially I thought it was a bad GPS or antenna, and eventually replaced both.  Then I noticed if I unplug an external (optics) sensor, the GPS would lock up almost immediately.

So I nixed the sensor at the 11th hour and went flying.  The GPS never locked on a single time during the whole flight.  There's about 2m of separation to the next capsule.


This morning I plugged everything back in just like it flew, and it immediately got a lock.  The only thing I noticed was that after powering up the cameras, the altitude was reading about 100 meters high.  But I still had 5-9 sats.


I'm running low on ideas on what to try to isolate this problem. 


Zack


Re: GPSL Registration

Bruce Coates
 

Hi Mike

Leigh (VE5LEE) and I (VE5BNC) had hoped to attend but, in a fit of wander lust, ended up booking a trip around Europe in June.  GPSL is a ton of fun but Amsterdam, Prague, Vienna, Venice and Paris won out this time. 

Have fun everyone!

Bruce - SABRE

------ Original message------
From: Mike, n0mpm
Date: Thu, Mar 21, 2019 4:26 PM
Cc:
Subject:[GPSL] GPSL Registration

GPSL 2019 registration is now open and available.    Please go to “superlaunch.org” for details on hotels, registration fees, and group dinners.  Hope to see you all in Pella, IA on June 13, 14 and 15 !!!!

Mike, n0mpm


GPSL Registration

Mike, n0mpm
 

GPSL 2019 registration is now open and available.    Please go to “superlaunch.org” for details on hotels, registration fees, and group dinners.  Hope to see you all in Pella, IA on June 13, 14 and 15 !!!!

Mike, n0mpm


GPS Rollover

Harry M
 


LightAPRS Tracker

Mustafa Tan
 

Hi,

Three years ago I was googling about high altitude balloons and I ended up with pico (floater) balloon projects. I was really impressed with some amateur radio operators efforts to circumnavigate around the world with party balloons and track them.

Six months later I got my amateur radio license and started flights with heavy APRS trackers. Since payload is very heavy, balloons maximum altitude never exceeded 9.000 meters and modules I used was not frequency agile.

So we (TA2MUN and TA9OHC) decided to develop a lightweight, extendable, affordable and open source APRS tracker. Since our tracker is very light and frequency agile, it's very convenient for pico (floater) balloon and HAB (High Altitude Balloon) projects. LightAPRS Tracker has been developed for nearly two years now and has been proven on many flights.

You can check out our tracker using following links:

Github page : https://github.com/lightaprs/LightAPRS-1.0
Shop : http://www.qrp-labs.com/lightaprs.html

Please do not hesitate to share if you have questions or comments about our tracker 

TA2MUN


Re: Frequency selection for airborne cross band repeaters

Carlton Corbitt
 

One thing i think works well, if you are part of a ham club that has a working repeater.   Is to put your balloon repeater output frequency the same as your clubs repeater output frequency.  That way everyone has the output frequency already programmed into the mobile radios to listen while tracking.
And you should be able to know if your own clubs repeater is planning to be in use or not.

Carlton
KI4NHK


Re: Frequency selection for airborne crossband repeaters

Joe WB9SBD
 

Also since you are running ATV, if you are flying a GPS unit, try to separate it as far as possible from the ATV system, I have had both the transmitters and even just the video cameras desence the GPS so much it was useless.

Joe WB9SBD

The Original Rolling Ball Clock
Idle Tyme
Idle-Tyme.com
http://www.idle-tyme.com

On 2/27/2019 12:52 PM, Bill Brown via Groups.Io wrote:
I would go with the 500 mW setting since it will likely have a high duty cycle and could overheat, even at 500 mW it could still overheat so try to mount the module on a good heatsink. Since you are running ATV on 70cm, you will want to transmit the crossband repeater on 70cm as well otherwise the receiver will be desensed by ATV EMI hash. But be aware to keep good separation between the ATV payload and the crossband repeater since you could see interference from the ATV transmitter getting into the 2m receiver as well. Perhaps a low-pass filter or bandpass filter in front of the receiver module would be a good idea. Also be aware that the ATV transmitter and camera could desense GPS receivers so also keep separation between the ATV payload and your balloon trackers.

- Bill WB8ELK

I would agree with other posts on this topic that it is best to stay with simplex frequencies. That's why I always fly with 446.025 out and 144.340 input or vice versa. The 446.025 frequency is not used a lot as compared to 446.000...although 445.975 and 446.300 are good alternates. Same for 144.340. It is primarily used nation-wide as an ATV talk frequency and occasionally for APRS links for balloon flights. The ATV folks don't mind and love to follow balloon flights and particularly appropriate in this case since you are flying an ATV transmitter. Even if someone is using 144.340 and not following your balloon, it won't matter since you won't interfere with them. I did fly a crossband repeater years ago from 73 Magazine headquarters in NH with 446.000 as the input and a 25 milliwatt 10m FM transmitter as the output during the VHF/UHF contest. It was a blast hearing all the mountaintop rover stations from well beyond typical line-of-sight ranges. Yes, that's right I used 10m as the output. It is legal to do so in the FM portion of 10m.








-----Original Message-----
From: Michael Hojnowski <kd2eat@...>
To: GPSL <GPSL@groups.io>
Sent: Wed, Feb 27, 2019 12:12 pm
Subject: Re: [GPSL] Frequency selection for airborne crossband repeaters

Well, I pulled the spreadsheet kept by the Upstate New York Repeater coordinators, and found a few frequencies that seem clear - 144.580 input, 447.025 output. 

I'm going to try a few NiceRF SA828 Walkie Talkie modules.  Not sure if I'll run them at 500mW or 1W.   Since it'll be transmitting on 70cm, I'm inclined to use the lower power, since it'll have lower free space path loss.  That would also reduce battery drain.

This is going to be an ambitious flight, including analog TV video on 70cm, the repeater, a payload drop initiated via DTMF tones, and with luck, the entire thing livestreamed onto youtube.  We hope to have a ground station with a high gain beam tracking based on APRS beacons, and feeding into the youtube stream.  

Bill / WB8ELK has me on the agenda to talk about the successes (or spectacular "lessons learned") at the Balloon Sat session at Dayton.

As the flight draws near, and we're confident we can livestream, I'll post URLs for those who would like to watch at home.  Tentative flight date is Sunday, April 28 with a rain date on May 5.

Mike / KD2EAT
Advisor, Amateur Radio Club at Cornell


On 2/27/2019 12:23 PM, Joe wrote:
I agree with Bill on that Pairing.

FORGET repeater co-coordinators. We used them on the very first repeater flight ever.Way back in like 1989 or so. And They just do not understand the coverages we can get with these flights. And one of the UHF freqs we were suggested to use as being safe, ended up being a UHF link from a repeater system, satellite receivers. So in the middle of our flight, suddenly on the balloon was a swapnet happening.

But if you want quiet great freq the pair Bill stated below we have used probably a dozen times and have worked great every time.

Now if you really want to have FUN! Many will make me now to put on my Flame suit. But we have done it probably 4 times? But the biggest fun was this pair
 146.52/446.000  Yup! It was crazy easily worked well over 300+ stations!

Mike what do you plan on usi9ng for equipment?

Will the repeater go both ways, think HT in crossband repeat but both directions.

Joe WB9SBD
KB9KHO
Near Space Sciences

The Original Rolling Ball Clock
Idle Tyme
Idle-Tyme.com
http://www.idle-tyme.com

On 2/27/2019 9:59 AM, Bill Brown via Groups.Io wrote:
I typically use 446.025 and 144.340. Both are simplex. For a simplex repeater i use 144.340. 
-Bill WB8ELK
On Feb 27, 2019, at 8:39 AM, Michael Hojnowski <kd2eat@...> wrote:

Hey Gang,

I'm intending to fly a cross-band repeater with a HAB in April.  It occurs to me that I don't have a good idea of how to select frequencies.  Should I be using one from the repeater input range on one band, and output on another?  Should I be selecting simplex frequencies for this short term use?  Should I attempt any kind of coordination with our regional frequency coordination groups?

What have people done?

Thanks for any advice,
Mike / KD2EAT