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Communication on a High Powered Rocket

Discussion in 'Radio and Communications' started by AndrewJ, Feb 13, 2018.

  1. AndrewJ

    AndrewJ New Member

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    Hello,

    I am building a high power rocket (estimate altitude between 15-16 thousand ft) and I need to have communication to a hand held receiver so I can get a GPS location of the rocket and live event updates (when parachutes deploy, what altitude I got, etc). I got the Eggfinger TRS and LCD display (http://www.eggtimerrocketry.com/page47.php - TRS) (http://www.eggtimerrocketry.com/page46.php - LCD). I have the GPS module for the LCD. There will be threaded rods that span the length of the electronics bay (short section of the rocket that houses the electronics) so having the antenna in there would compromise the range (to about 7000 ft) so I need to have the antenna outside of the electronics bay.

    My first choice would be to have some kind of wire antenna that I could zip tie and duct tape to the shock cord (nylon strap that attaches the rocket to the parachute) so that I don't have to worry about the rocket landing on and breaking the antenna, but it would need to be very flexible to allow for the packing of the shock cord and parachute in the rocket. I haven't been able to find anything that would allow me to do this so my backup plan right now is to have a rubber duckie antenna from the bulkhead (lid to the electronics bay), but the issues I see with this are the rocket landing on the antenna causing it to break and the shock cord snapping the antenna off at separation.

    Edit: The antenna needs to be RP-SMA and 900 MHz. The rubber duckie antenna I got for the LCD is 3 dBi.

    Thanks for the help,
    Andrew
     
  2. MikeMl

    MikeMl Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    Is the body of the rocket made of something that doesn't block RF, or is it metallic?
     
  3. AndrewJ

    AndrewJ New Member

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    It is made from thin-walled fiberglass so signal is not blocked.
     
  4. dave miyares

    Dave New Member

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  5. unclejed613

    unclejed613 Well-Known Member

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    how about using copper foil tape on the outside of the rocket for an antenna?
     
  6. gophert

    gophert Active Member

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    I would ziptie a 28-gauge copper wire to several places along the shock cord (length of copper slightly more than fully extended shock cord so it doesnt break).
     

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