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