Electronic conspicuity article from the Feb edition of the L

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Re: Electronic conspicuity article from the Feb edition of t

Postby Gaznav » Sat Oct 06, 2018 11:30 am

I posted this a while back on the Flyer Forum and members may find this of interest?

On Thursday 6th September 2018 a development SkyEcho 2 arrived in the post. I was sent it by the company to test and give my thoughts - as both a keen commentator on low-power ADS-B and also as a current SkyEcho 1 user that I purchased just before Christmas 2017.

For the LAA team, I approve the use of any of the attached photos and the information contained within should you want to use any of it in your great magazine.

Firstly, as many will know, I was keen on the first SkyEcho 2 (SE2) that I saw and I was not disappointed with this one either. It is an excellent build quality, feels rugged, has a substantial mounting system and comes in it’s own bespoke carry case with everything you need - the mount, a USB cable and the device. Here it is on the wing of my Condor:

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I mounted it on the rear window so that it would be out of my main field of view - not that this is big, about the size of a packet of 20 cigarettes, with no cables (it has a battery that lasts up to 12 hours!) and a wifi link to my iPad and an old iPhone 5S that I am using as my traffic display velcro’d to the instrument panel. Garfield is an optional extra should the unit fail [joke!].

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There is no need to use an App with SE2 as there is a nifty web feature that you point to with an IP address via the SE2 wifi link. Don’t worry the instruction guide is easy to follow. Here are the configuration pages:

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Here is the flight performance that I saw today. I flew out of Hinton in the Hedges, past Upper Heyford, Bicester, Westcott (WCO), Princes Risborough and back. This is what I saw:

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Even before climb out I could see the instrument traffic at Oxford Airport. Also that there were some others in the Cotswolds.

The mount for the SE2 was as solid as a rock. No lick and stick needed, just one of those great mounts by RAM. Also, the SE2 comes with a standard camera screw mount so many other mounts can be used.

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The first aircraft to trigger on the Sky Demon traffic display was this one on approach into Oxford.

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Here is me turning away from that traffic and altering my course to the right. I never saw him/her even at 2 miles :shock: Must try harder!

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Next up as I was just south of Bicester avoiding the glider site I saw that I was starting to receive weather from the UAT at Wycombe Air Park - about 25nm and I was at 2,400ft QNH (just over 2,000ft AGL). However as I approached Westcot (WCO) I noticed a helicopter travelling towards me about 1,700ft below following the powerlines. This is VERY poignant as this is near to where the tragic events unfolded between a light aircraft and helicopter which collided killing all.

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It demonstrates to me that if both aircraft had the benefit of ADS-B In/Out then we may not have unnecessarily lost these people - many of whom on here were their friends.

The weather mozaic for the whole of the UK was downloaded in less than a couple of minutes. Here is the current coverage from the UAT stations on trial in the South of the UK.

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Not a lot of weather down south so I zoomed in on Anglesey (having been at RAF Valley in the past where it normally rains day or night every day!).

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I then called up RAF Halton to see if my SIL=1 ADS-B was being tracked on Flight Radar 24 - it was and the Airfield Manager took this screenshot and sent it to me later.

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I later checked my flight was tracked on FR24 throughout, it was:

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So, first impressions are that my expectations were exceeded with this device. I was worried that the internal antennae may have reduced the performance but that performance appears better, or if not as good as, the previous SkyEcho model. Here is a screen shot zoomed out and I appear to be seeing an airliner nort east of Liverpool that is only 3,400ft above. I know that seeing traffic that far away is not much use, but it proves that the internal antennae are pretty damn good...

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This proves that SkyEcho 2 is here and very soon to be marketed. I don’t have the FLARMbridge as I do not have a FLARM to connect anyway - I would need to borrow one for a while to do that. It also, does not yet have the FLARM tx/rx function that is under development. Further, the concurrent use of Mode S is still not allowed (but hopefully soon) but a Mode 3/A with C can. But what I do have is a SIL=1 ADS-B transceiver, a UAT reciever that gets me weather and all in a great little ‘no fuss’ package with its own battery without any wires or antennae to snag on.

Finally, I gave Turweston Radio A call to see whether they could see me on their PAW OGN-R - yes, they can. Which is good news for everyone involved.

Would I pay £419 for it - you bet. It is an excellent solution for those with no transponder or electrics - which is quite a few in the LAA fleet. I just hope they let me keep it, even at a reduced rate (one careful owner and all that!) :mrgreen:

https://uavionix.com/products/skyecho/

PS. I do not work for uAvionix or SkyDemon before anyone asks!!!
Gary Coleman
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Re: Electronic conspicuity article from the Feb edition of t

Postby Gerry Holland » Sat Oct 06, 2018 7:22 pm

Gary
Many thanks for the effort you have made to show SkyEcho 2 use. I have one arriving next week.
I already use PAW but want to have an ID beyond PAW users only. Not sure yet how I'm going to combine use of both when using ADS-B Tx. Luckily have 3 PAW installs in Hangar so something will transpire.
I too have no Electrical system so this suits very well.
Kind Regards
Gerry
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Re: Electronic conspicuity article from the Feb edition of t

Postby Gaznav » Sat Oct 06, 2018 7:46 pm

Hi Gerry

I hope you will be as pleased as I am with both the SkyEcho 1 and 2 (SE1 and SE2). The later model is a significant improvement. You will be able to use both the PAW and the SE2 - as a portable solution this is the best of both worlds really as you will be outputting ADS-B but getting the reception benefits of PAW. If you are running both then I would leave both on transmit and then hook up the PAW to a tablet/smartphone until the FLARM module comes out for the SE2 and then you could have everything in one package. Obviously if you use PAW you won’t get the benefits of the weather in South England for the trial unless you upgrade it.

Drop me a line if you have any difficulty setting up the SE2. I found it really straight forward.

Best, Gary
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