The installation of PilotAware will differ from aircraft to aircraft, depending on the design, class and licensing authority of the aircraft. In its simplest form, PilotAware has been designed as 'carry on equipment’. This is classified as a temporary installation and therefore does not need any installation approval. This is similar to the fitting and use of a hand-held radio in the aircraft but no need for a license as PilotASware does not transmit on an aviation frequency.
Positioning the PilotAware Unit;
The golden rule for a good installation of any EC device is that the antennas and the GPS must be able to 'see' out of the aircraft and the unit itself must be securely fastened within the aircraft. On conventional aircraft, the location of a carry on Rosetta will usually be in front of the Pilot and passenger(s), however, this will differ from aircraft to aircraft. Experimentation and sharing best practices through the PilotAware forum will identify the best location for each aircraft type.
Like all UHF radio signals, those used by PilotAware get attenuated (weakened) if they are affected by metal or water (the engine and possibly the skin of the aircraft is metal and you and your passenger are for practical purposes 70% water). Therefore, position the antennas such that they have the best chance of avoiding these negative influences. Remote internal or external antenna kits are available to further improve the PilotAware performance.
Using the computing power of the 230+ ATOM ground stations, it is now possible to see how good the performance of your PilotAware carry-on device installation is. This very innovative development will allow you to position and reposition your unit for maximum performance. Further information is available here
Some users will want to make the installation more permanent. A permanent installation will always look neater, be more efficient and work better than carry-on equipment. A permanent installation can be done by distributing the PilotAware hardware throughout your aircraft and then connecting the radio antennas, power, GPS and even the Wi-Fi via extension leads. Further information is available here
ADS-B Out. Connecting to a Mode-S transponder with Extended Squitter;
One of the useful features of PilotAware is the ability to share its GPS information with third-party equipment. This is particularly useful when you want to use the GPS in PilotAware as the uncertified GPS source to convert your Mode S transponder with extended squitter (ES) to transmit ADS-B-out. To do this you need to obtain a USB-RS232 converter cable to connect to your transponder. Further information is available here.
Connecting to Flarm Equipment;
Flarm Equipment is an excellent 860 band EC device for use when operating close to or often in the location of gliders, such as at a gliding club. Integrating a PilotAware unit with a Flarm device, so that you will get Flarm in and Flarm out, is very easy with the use of a single RS232 cable. Further information is available here