GPS Automatic tracking system

GPS AUTOMATIC TRACKING PEDESTALS

 

The OS-PT family of GPS Automatic tracking systems have been designed to provide GPS based positioning of high-gain antenna systems to support real time airborne video and telemetry transmission requirements. The automatic tracking pedestal systems are based on heavy duty ruggedized Pan and Tilt pedestal that provides large output torque on each axis. Heavy duty ball bearings supporting the output shaft allow it to accommodate heavy payloads under wind and heavy gust conditions. Each axis includes a DC brushless stepper motor coupled to very low backlash harmonic gearing. It is designed to allow stalling of the output shafts without damage to the gears, the motors, or control electronics. The tracker units are air-filled and were original designed for under water operations. The units are excellent for above water applications where rain, humidity and dust are main issues

The OS-PT-10/25/100 series utilizes a RS-485 communications protocol which provides several advantages over RS-232. RS-485 allows communication over longer lengths of cable (1000 feet) and enables the ability for networking multiple nodes. Multiple trackers can be controlled over the same cable. One cable assembly with a total of four wires (two for power; two for communication ) is required to operate the RS-485 / RS-232 tracking system.

All OS-PT systems have been fully integrated with Silvus Technology’ MIMO radios, including the 2X2 SC4200 and 4X4 SC4400; Piccolo flight control system from Cloud Cap Technology (CCT) and Fligh-TEK from L3 Communication Geneva Aerospace. The tracking system operates directly from Piccolo Command Center ,Mission-TEK as well as OS standalone antenna tracker software.

The system is delivered as a turn-key solution, complete with cable assembly, specific antennas, power supply, Hercules heavy duty tripod, shipping cases  and RS-232 to RS-485 to USB converter.

OS-PT-10

The OS-PT-10 is the smaller tracker of the series; it provides 10 lb-ft (13.56 N-m) of output torque on each of its two axis. Up to 24 inches RHCP dishes, high-gain omni for diversity receive, and Yagi or Patch antennas for data comms, can easily be mounted.

Power:
-Operating Range: 24 – 28 VDC, 1.7 amps (max) per axis @ 24 VDC
-Braking Mode: 24 VDC, adjustable, 0 mA to 1.2 amps per axis
-At Rest (not braking): < 100 mA per axis
-Rotation Speed (160:1 gears): Variable, 0.5 to 10 degrees/second
-Scan Range (Azimuth): 0 to 360 degrees
-Scan Range (Elevation): -10 to 130 degrees
-Resolution: +/- 0.5 degrees (30 arc minutes)
Housing:
-Material: Anodized 6061-T6 Aluminum
-Height: 236 mm (9.30 in)
-Width: 179 mm (7.05 in)
-Main Body Diameter: 74.9 mm (2.95 in)
-Output Shaft Diameter: 25.4 mm (1.00 in)
Weight :
-Air-filled: 3.7 kg (8.2 lbs)
-Standard Connectors: LPMBH-4-MP
-Housing Mounting: Four 1/4-20 threaded holes in output pan shaft
-Antenna Mounting: Mounting plate, yoke and optional YAGI brackets

Environmental:
-Operating Temperature: -10C to +50C(-14F to 122F)
-Storage Temperature: -20C to +60C (-4F to 140F)

The OS-PT family of GPS Automatic tracking systems have been designed to provide GPS based positioning of high-gain antenna systems to support real time airborne video and telemetry transmission requirements. The automatic tracking pedestal systems are based on heavy duty ruggedized Pan and Tilt pedestal that provides large output torque on each axis. Heavy duty ball bearings supporting the output shaft allow it to accommodate heavy payloads under wind and heavy gust conditions. Each axis includes a DC brushless stepper motor coupled to very low backlash harmonic gearing. It is designed to allow stalling of the output shafts without damage to the gears, the motors, or control electronics. The tracker units are air-filled and were original designed for under water operations. The units are excellent for above water applications where rain, humidity and dust are main issues

The OS-PT-10/25/100 series utilizes a RS-485 communications protocol which provides several advantages over RS-232. RS-485 allows communication over longer lengths of cable (1000 feet) and enables the ability for networking multiple nodes. Multiple trackers can be controlled over the same cable. One cable assembly with a total of four wires (two for power; two for communication ) is required to operate the RS-485 / RS-232 tracking system.

All OS-PT systems have been fully integrated with Silvus Technology’ MIMO radios, including the 2X2 SC4200 and 4X4 SC4400; Piccolo flight control system from Cloud Cap Technology (CCT) and Fligh-TEK from L3 Communication Geneva Aerospace. The tracking system operates directly from Piccolo Command Center ,Mission-TEK as well as OS standalone antenna tracker software.

The system is delivered as a turn-key solution, complete with cable assembly, specific antennas, power supply, Hercules heavy duty tripod, shipping cases  and RS-232 to RS-485 to USB converter.

OS-PT-25

The OS-PT-25 provides 45 lb-ft (61 N-m) of output torque on each of its two axis. It may be fitted with a variety of antennas depending on the frequency of operation, polarity, and gain requirements of the system. Up to 48 inches large RHCP dishes, high-gain omni for diversity receive, and up two Yagi antennas for data comms, can easily be utilized.

Power:
-Operating Range: 24 – 28 VDC, 1.7 amps (max) per axis @ 24 VDC
-Braking Mode: 24 VDC, adjustable, 0 mA to 1.2 amps per axis
-At Rest (not braking): < 100 mA per axis
-Rotation Speed (160:1 gears): Variable, 0.5 to 10 degrees/second
-Scan Range (Azimuth): 0 to 360 degrees
-Scan Range (Elevation): -10 to 130 degrees
-Resolution: +/- 0.5 degrees (30 arc minutes)
Housing:
-Material: Anodized 6061-T6 Aluminum
-Height: 286 mm (11.25 in)
-Width: 199 mm (7.85 in)
-Main Body Diameter: 107 mm (4.20 in)
-Output Shaft Diameter: 38.1 mm (1.50 in)
Weight :
-Air-filled: 8.7 kg (19.2 lbs)
-Standard Connectors: LPMBH-4-MP
-Housing Mounting: Four 1/4-20 threaded holes in output pan shaft
-Antenna Mounting: Mounting plate, yoke and optional YAGI brackets

Environmental:
-Operating Temperature: -10C to +50C(-14F to 122F)
-Storage Temperature: -20C to +60C (-4F to 140F)

OS-PT-25 with a 30 inches directional dish and Yagi antenna
OS-PT-25 with a 30 inches directional dish and dual Yagi antennas and Omni
OS-PT-25 complete system
The OS-PT-25 system is fully customizable, consequently it can accomodate an array of different directional antennas, from 14 inches to 48 inches dishes, to horn, Omni and patch antennas
OS-PT-25 with a 48 inches directional dish plus Patch antenna
OS-PT-25 integrated with Silvus SC4200 2X2 MIMO radio
OS-PT-25 with a 30 inches directional dish plus Patch antenna

A brief video showing the OS-PT-25 system in operation can be downloaded from here

OS-PT-100 with 2 side by side 30″ dishes

OS-PT-100

The OS-PT-100 is the latest and the most powerful tracker of the OS-PT family.It has been designed specifically to accommodate SILVUS 4×4 MIMO radios with or without bidirectional power amplifiers.Up two side by side 30” dishes with Left-Right or Horizontal-Vertical feeds can be mounted

The OS-PT-100 system can also be used as a single tracking system integrated with two different radios at different frequencies to increase redundancy, for example two Silvus 2X2 MIMO SC4200 radios plus two dual bidirectional power amplifiers.This configuration allow for long ranges (more than 150km LOS) primary link and secondary backup link .

It can also be used as a dual tracking system, i.e. two trackers, one ground control station tracking one aircraft. Each tracker can be integrated with a Silvus 4X4 MIMO SC4400 plus two dual bidirectional power amplifiers. This configuration can reach ranges over 250km LOS on a dual frequency (primary plus backup) setup.

OS-PT-100 integrated with Silvus 4X4 MIMO SC4400 radios and two dual bidirectional power amplifiers
OS-PT-100 complete system

OS-PT-200 complete system

OS-PT-200

The OS-PT-200 pan and tilt tracker is air-filled and completely sealed. Heavy-duty ball bearings supporting both output shaft allow it to accommodate heavy antenna arrays. Each axis includes a DC brushless stepper motor coupled with zero backlash rigid worm. The unit has been designed to operate under harsh environment where rain, humidity, and dust are issues. It features continuous rotation of the pan axis and a self-locking mechanism, so when power loss occurs it stays in position.
The OS-PT-200 utilizes Ethernet 10/100 Base-T communication protocol which provides several advantages over serial.
Multiple slip-ring options are available, including a 2×5 A or 2×10 A power lines, Ethernet 10/100 Base-T and one or two RF ports, 1.7-5.5 Ghz for payload.
The OS-PT-200 may be fitted with a variety of antennas depending on the frequency of operation, polarity, and gain requirements of the system.Large RHCP dishes, high-gain omni for diversity receive, and up two Yagi antennas for data comms, can easily be mounted.

OS-PT-200 tracker and shipping containers

OS-PT-250 complete system

OS-PT-250

The OS-PT-250 pan and tilt tracker is air-filled and completely sealed. Heavy-duty ball bearings supporting both output shaft allow it to accommodate heavy antenna arrays. Each axis includes a DC brushless stepper motor coupled with zero backlash rigid worm. The unit has been designed to operate under harsh environment where rain, humidity, and dust are issues. It features continuous rotation of the pan axis and a self-locking mechanism, so when power loss occurs it stays in position.

The OS-PT-250 has been designed specifically to accomodate SILVUS 4×4 MIMO radios with or without bidirectional power amplifiers. Up two side by side 30” dishes with Left-Right or Horizontal-Vertical feeds can be mounted.
The OS-PT-250 utilizes Ethernet 10/100 Base-T communication protocol which provides several advantages over serial.
Multiple slip-ring options are available, including a 2×5 A or 2×10 A power lines, Ethernet 10/100 Base-T and one or two RF ports, 1.7-5.5 Ghz for payload.
The OS-PT-250 may be fitted with a variety of antennas depending on the frequency of operation, polarity, and gain requirements of the system.Large RHCP dishes, high-gain omni for diversity receive, and up two Yagi antennas for data comms, can easily be mounted.

 

OS-PT-260 integrated with one RF Port

OS-PT-250 tracker and shipping containers

OS-Antenna Tracker Software

Optimum Solutions Antenna Tracker (OST) is a proprietary software designed to maintain a directional antenna, mounted on any of the OS-PT family positioners, pointed to an airborne target based on real time Global Positioning System (GPS) data of both, the target and the positioner. Real-time position data can be entered through serial ports (RS232 or USB-Serial adapter) or through network connections (UDP, either Unicast or Multicast, TCP client-server or Piccolo client-server), and be formatted in various protocols: NMEA 0183, Piccolo proprietary format, Mavlink 1 or 2, CoT (Cursor On Target) or KLV (Key Length Value). If data is coming through a UDP network connection, the data format detection is fully automatic, allowing the proper parsing without user intervention. Moreover, UDP connection also allows to track alternatively many targets along a same tracking session by just selecting them in dedicated and dynamically filled pull-down menus or clicking them in the integrated OST Moving Map GIS.

OST can work either with True (geographic) or Magnetic azimuth references. If the antenna position is provided by a differential GPS, then the unit does not need to be aligned whatsoever before start tracking. Otherwise, it can be aligned with any commercially available magnetic compass.

OST automatically switches between omni-directional and directional antenna, allowing the best possible signal reception given the distance to the tracked target.

If, while auto-tracking, radio link with the target is lost or interrupted, OST can still continue steering the directional antenna using the target data provided by our networkable, self-contained, dual band “OS-DUAL-ADS-B” ADS-B receiver, or by any other commercial, USB plugged, RTL-SDR ADS-B receivers. If both, radio link and ADS-B data become unavailable, then OST makes the antenna perform contextually updated search patterns until target’s position is regained.

OST user interface provides many intuitive and human-friendly indicators and features in order to facilitate the User to be permanently and fully aware of the tracking session. It includes analogical and digital gauges and captions on the main program’s User Interface and a totally integrated and comprehensive Geographic Information System (GIS): “The OST Moving Map”.

OST Moving Map is a two-dimensional, graphic feature designed to provide OST User a complete, constantly updated, intuitive, situational awareness of the antenna axis positions and its motion in relation with the vehicle position, as well as all the contextual information related to the current tracking session. It is composed by two sizable windows: The lower “Azimuth Window”, which encloses a dynamically geodetic representation of a limited portion of the earth surface, constantly and automatically filled with maps provided by several web map services; and the upper “Elevation Window”, which is a side view representation of the antenna mounting and the target being tracked, over the terrain elevation profile along the earth’s maximum circle that passes through them.

There are a lot of information that can be monitored and interacted with simple mouse clicks, on the “Azimuth window”: from basic guidance data (antenna position, antenna’s pointing direction antenna’s lobe amplitude, antenna’s minimum auto-radius, target’s position, target’s course, target’s traveled path and times, positioner’s angular speed, positioner’s current offset angle, etc.) to relevant contextual information: line of sight (LOS) coverage around the antenna (given the antenna elevation, the terrain elevation around and the current target altitude) to quickly assess whether the target is within or beyond current antenna’s LOS range; air-traffic compiled from the attached ADS-B RTL-SDR receiver; CoT targets collected from the CoT received messages; location of the Silvus radios connected to the TCP/IP network and their signal strength values between each pair of them; etc. 

On the other hand, everything related with the elevation or tilt positioner axis is displayed in the Moving Map “Elevation window”: antenna’s tilt angle, target altitude, horizontal and vertical antenna-target distance; current tilt angle position; tilt axis speed; tilt go-to angle; current-go-to angles offset; and, most important, the possible obstructions of the antenna’s LOS due to the terrain heights along its current pointing direction.