Yarome

UAV/UAS Tracker

4 posts in this topic

Just curious if any UAV/UAS folks use trackers, and if so, what is your preferred system.

I've been considering a Marco Polo system. The transmitter is only 12g, has about a 7-10 day capability and is not cellular dependent. In the best of circumstances it claims a 2mi range, but realistically I would imagine it's probably half that and maybe then some in real life. Any thoughts?

Opinions for or against even using one?

Anyone actually using a Marco Polo?

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I don't have a drone, but I have my ham radio license and I always thought it would be cool to put an APRS transmitter on one for tracking purproses. The nice thing is if there are digipeaters in the area, they would rebroadcast the signal so you would definitely have more than a 2 mile range or more even if it wasn't being picked up by a digipeater. Using a handheld radio with APRS built in or just an app on your cell phone, you could get the cordinates of the transmitter and be able to track your drone.

Of course this not nearly the off the shelf solution this company is selling, but another idea. 

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That sounds intriguing and had fun doing a bit of reading. Thanks! I found the tracksoar site (pretty darn cool they are all open source).That seems to be about the only APRS transmitter, at the moment, that might work in some UAV applications. As it sits, it probably wouldn't work too well for a drone... probably more so with a plane... but it will be interesting to see if anyone, or if they, do further development along those lines.

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Cool, I had not even heard about tracksoar myself. I've participated in some ham radio balloon lanches where we sent an APRS transmitter up in a balloon and then tracked it afterwords. That was always a blast. There probably isn't a huge amount of Ham Radio operators flying drones (they are probably broke from all their ham equipment, haha), but it is a need concept for sure to be able to track it. 

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