3. Installation Overview

Rosetta & Classic Instructions




Installation Instructions.

Preparing for Installation:

  • Gather all the components of the Rosetta-FX kit, including the FX device, antennas, and necessary power and interconnect cables.
  • Identify the two gold coloured radio SMA connectors on the FX box and the two different antennas. The smaller antenna is the (1090MHz) ADSB receiving antenna and the longer one is the (869.525MHz) PilotAware transmitting and receiving antenna.
  • Internal and external antennas differ and are described below.

Installing with a FLARM or without a FLARM connection.

PilotAware FX has been designed to extend the capabilities of an installed FLARM device so that it will then have full interoperability with PilotAware and also have access to the advanced facilities of the PilotAware infrastructure.

Alternatively, the FX can be used without a connection to a FLARM device but of course you will not then be transmitting a FLARM signal.

In this instance the FX includes the majority of the PilotAware Rosetta functionality but also adds additional benefits. These include; extended power supply range, lower power consumption, better ADSB reception, better GPS capture and improved user interfaces. FX does not however detect bearing less targets, or provide native audio alerts.

If you want to have a better understanding of the differences between Rosetta and Rosetta FX please click here.

If your installation does not include connecting it to an existing FLARM just ignore the RJ12 cable connection.

External Antenna Installation:

Location and Ground Plane:

  • Monopole antennas are supplied that need to be mounted on a conducting ground plane for correct operation. The skin of a metal aircraft is an ideal ground plane.
  • For antenna location, choose a non-load-bearing location under the fuselage, ensuring it provides a clear line of sight for the UHF transmissions.
  • If the fuselage material is non-conductive ie fabric or fibreglass, add a metallic plate at the mounting point to act as the ground plane (Minimum radius of ~20cm).
  • Avoid installing the antennas near metal obstructions such as wheel struts, exhaust pipes, and other objects that could cause signal obscuration (blocking).
  • Make sure that there is a good connection between the antenna and the ground plane by removing paint and aluminium oxide at the interface between the two.
  • Ensure that the supplied locking washer, nut and O-ring are used to secure the antenna and effect a corrosion-resistant electric connection.
  • The longer antenna (750mm) is the PilotAware transmitting and receiving antenna. The shorter antenna (550mm) is the 1090MHz ADSB receiving antenna.
  • When correctly installed, the PilotAware transmitter should give a VECTOR Diagram showing a near 360-degree radiation pattern.

Vertical Installation:

  • Mount the external antennas vertically for optimal performance. Vertical orientation is essential for optimum signal transmission and reception.

Safe Distance:

  • Install the antennas at least 50cm (20 inches) away from the the existing 1090MHz Mode-C/S transponder antenna.

Cable Management

  • Carefully route the RG142 coaxial cable, avoiding kinks or sharp bends. Securely lock the BNC connector to the antenna and device for a stable connection.

Securing Antennas:

  • Ensure that the antennas and cable are securely mounted to sustain the dynamic forces anticipated during operation and finally check the locking washer, nut and O-ring are secure.

Internal Antenna Installation:

The Internal antennas supplied are efficient centre-feed dipole antennas. Dipole antennas do not need a ground plane. The longer one (130mm) is the PilotAware transmitting and receiving antenna and the shorter one (105mm) is the 1090Mhz  receive-only antenna.

Choosing the Best Location Inside the Aircraft for the Antennas:

  • Select a location within the aircraft that minimises signal obscuration (blocking), such as away from large metal surfaces and bodies of water, including occupants fuel tanks (including plastic ones) and electronic equipment. The antennas need the best possible clear view, outside of the aircraft.


  • Securely mount the antennas vertically, initially ensuring they have ample clear space around them for signal transmission and reception. Initially, this can be done using the suction cups provided on each antenna.

Minimising Obstructions:

  • Place the antennas near windows or other non-metallic (or carbon fibre) areas to enhance signal transmission and reception.
  • In most metal or carbon fibre aircraft, the best location is the top left and right-hand corners of the windscreen to provide a predominantly forward-facing radiation and detection pattern.
  • In fibreglass and fabric aircraft, there are more location options as fibreglass and fabric do not obscure radio signals. 'Carbon fibre does block UHF signals'.
  • Check the radiation pattern of the PilotAware transmissions using PilotAware VECTOR. This should be as close to 360 degrees as possible.
  • When, after a few flights and experimentation you have found the optimum position, the antennas can be additionally secured with the 3M double-edged adhesive tape provided.
  • Finally, route the antenna cables to effect a neat installation with no cables showing.

Connecting Antennas to the Rosetta-FX Device

Identifying SMA Ports:

  • Locate the gold SMA ports on the rear side of the Rosetta-FX device. The ports are designated for each antenna connection.

Connecting the Coaxial Cable:

  • Connect the SMA end of the PilotAware antenna coaxial cable to SMA port 1 on the FX device. This is on the far left of the FX, identified by a ‘Transmission icon'.
  • Connect the SMA end of the ADS-B antenna coaxial cable to SMA port 3 on the FX device. This is on the far right of the FX, identified by a 'Jet icon'.

Rosetta FX Rear Socket Patch Panel

Connecting the Device:

Power Connection:

  • Choose a suitable power source for the FX device (USB-C, Molex-SL, RJ45 or RJ12) as described in the power section, and connect one power supply accordingly.

FLARM Connection:

  • If using the smaller RJ12 connector supplied, connect it from the FX device Data output port to the FLARM display. Connect the original FLARM cable from the FLARM to the FX Data input Port.

Connecting a remote GPS antenna.

  • FX has an inbuilt GPS and antenna. If the FX unit is to be installed hidden behind the dashboard or other parts of the cockpit or fuselage as recommended, then the remote GPS antenna should be used.
  • The remote GPS antenna should be mounted on the dashboard or other location with a clear, uninterrupted view of the satellite constellations.
  • The remote GPS cable is terminated in a male SMA connector that should be connected to the female SMA socket on the rear of the FX, second from the right, identified by a ‘Satellite ICON’. The FX will auto detect that the remote antenna has been connected.

Final Checks and Testing:

  • Double-check all connections are in the correct position and are secure.
  • Permanently install the FX box ensuring it is secure enough to withstand all anticipated vibration and G forces in operation.
  • Test the device and antennas to ensure everything is functioning correctly.
  • Check for interference with other aircraft systems and resolve any issues.

Safety Precautions:

  • Follow all safety guidelines as outlined in the Rosetta-FX manual.
  • Consult an experienced engineer, inspector or reach out to PilotAware Customer Support.

Regular Maintenance:

  • Periodically inspect the antennas and connections for signs of wear, water ingress or damage.

For a permit to fly aircraft, please ensure that the installation is recorded in the aircraft maintenance log.

Next Step. Have a look at Powering up your FX 



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