Aircraft ADS-B Receiver: Northern Nevada

This website is dedicated to tracking and displaying data from every flight seen by my ADS-B receiver located in North Western NV.

Antenna

The antenna used for this setup is a homemade coaxial collinear design using RG6 coaxial cable and some 1" PVC pipe. It contains 3 full elements with a shorted half element at the top. I inserted the antenna into the PVC piping with a sealed cap at the top and bottom. The bottom cap has a hole cut out for the coaxial feed line and is sealed using a bung made of electrical tape, then sealed again with silicone.

I built the antenna based on examples, diagrams and instructions from the following websites/forums:

Receiver

A Raspberry Pi 2 running various scripts and software is the backbone of this whole setup. A FlightAware Pro Stick Plus is used to receive the data from the antenna and then decoded and sent to FlightAware, Flightradar24, Planefinder and ADSBExchange for use on their websites.

The data is also sent to a separate local server for use on this website

Software

The following ADS-B related softare is running 24/7 on the Raspberry Pi:

Virtual Radar Server (VRS) is a web based realtime aircraft tracking application. For my setup, VRS runs in Mono on the Raspberry Pi and receives ADS-B and MLAT data.

VRS then combines this data with online databases to display realtime tracking information about the aircraft the receiver is currently seeing. VRS also stores everything in a database, from which information is extracted and used to form this website.

Data Sources

All data displayed on this site (except for the logos and images) is extracted from Virtual Radar Server, either from a JSON file containing position details or an SQLite database file containing just about everything else. The database file is updated automatically from online sources.

The data from this file may not be 100% accurate - if things are missing in the flight log (such as Operator or Callsign) this is beyond my control. I have added a PHP script to make corrections as flights are imported but I can only add these corrections as I see the need.

Web Host

This website is hosted by a FreeBSD based 24/7 home server. It's not a dedicated web host so I can't claim anywhere near a 100% uptime, but it has proven itself to be fairly reliable!

Acknowledgements

Andy Hill - creator/owner of flights.hillhome.org. This was the first flight logging website that I came across and it's where I got the idea. Andy has provided a public repository of all the scripts, files and instructions needed to get started with collecting, organizing and displaying local data from an ADS-B receiver. His GitHub repository can be found HERE. The files from this repository were the basis for this site and the concept, layout and styling is more or less the same as Andy's site because it's simple and it works.

Rob Jones - creator/owner of flights.sonicgoose.com. Another very similar flight logging site which was acually the basis for Andy's website. The front page of Rob's site (sonicgoose.com) contains a blog with many tutorials and discussions regarding flight tracking and database management.

Mario Trunz - the creator of a now offline flight tracking/logging website that was instrumental in the development of Rob's site.

The performance graphs are generated using a setup created by Flightaware user wiedehopf. The GitHub repository for this system is HERE.