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Old 19-01-2018, 19:05   #1
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Question Iridium Next tracks AIS globally, can your average transceiver reach it

Was watching SpaceX launch and my jaw dropped - seems so obvious now - just listen signals that planes and boats already emit.

With live satellite imagery (already available) authorities can zoom in on any poor fellow whose AIS signal suddenly disappeared... If not covered in clouds

My question is - can simple AIS transceiver reach satellite. LEO means they travel at 781 km altitude. Antenna's are design to broadcast sideways, not up, usually what, 100km or so before it goes behind horizon.

Edit: Here's an interesting presentation on how it works and who will be granted the data:
Basically the service is sold by ExactEarth company. The tech itself is also known S-AIS and is not exactly new.
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Old 19-01-2018, 22:30   #2
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Re: Iridium Next tracks AIS globally, can your average transceiver reach it

Yes! Once worked as an engineer at a NASA tracking site. Was testing the VHF repeater aboard ATS-3 when I heard an airport ground crew using hand held transceivers. Gave them a call and got a loud and clear signal report from them. Interestingly, the ATS satellites are in geosynchronous orbit about 22300 miles above the earth. Later we used this setup to communicate with people in the wilds of Alaska.
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Old 20-01-2018, 08:26   #3
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Re: Iridium Next tracks AIS globally, can your average transceiver reach it

Cool, very cool. Was just telling a friend the other day that Musk will soon allow me to do my consulting work in the middle of the ocean. That day is close....
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