Ground and Flight Stations

When undertaking a remote monitoring project: whether you are using a drone, high altitude balloon or a satellite (or even a boat, bicycle or bison), the architecture involves having 2 instruments: a Ground Station and a Flight Station.

The Flight Station:

  • Also referred to as the payload.
  • It includes multiple sensors to measure a host of environmental factors and GPS. 
  • It usually moves when measuring data (but it doesn't have to).  
  • This is the instrument that we load into a CubeSat and send into space.  Or we load onto a high altitude balloon, or a drone or a boat.
  • Data measured on the Flight Station is saved to microSD card.
  • The Flight Station uses LoRa (radio) to transmit data for the Ground Station to pick up. 

The Ground Station:

  • Also referred to as the Base Station.
  • Uses LoRa radio to listen for data being transmitted by the Flight Station
  • Displays data from the Flight Station on screen.
  • Uses Wi-Fi to share data from the Flight Station with the Internet of Things (IoT).
  • The Ground Station instrument is kept as simple as possible. It varies from kit to kit, but tends to include the following components:

The IoT Platform:

  • There is typically a third component to a remote monitoring project: the Internet platform with which data is shared.
  • The Ground Station shares data (via Wi-Fi) with an IoT platform, which is set up separately.
  • Where the Ground Station is outside of Wi-Fi range it is still able to pick up and display data from the Flight Station.

XinaBox Kits

XinaBox have designed several kits that use the Ground Station / Flight Station architecture (links below).