Many of you know me from being very active in the Helium Mining project; I am still the admin for Helium Mining club on Facebook. As some of you may know, things went sideways with Helium and I think we all agree that bad decisions brought the project down; it is still up for debate whether it will recover.
I am now getting hotspots back that have been unplugged by my hosts who no longer want to participate. I don’t blame them, it is not really producing enough to justify fixing anything that may go awry. so with an excess of hardware, I have been looking for ideas of what to do next.
My friend Conrad introduced me to a project called DeFli. The DeFli Network is using Software Defined Radios to aggregate transponder data from aircraft and track the telemetry data. The idea is to pave the way for using this data for Unmanned Aircraft (UA) such as delivery drones.
The key here for those who are like me, it doesn’t take much to convert your Helium miner into a DeFli miner if you are working with a Raspberry Pi based Helium miner (RAK, SenseCap, Pisces, Nebra, etc…). Unfortunately, Syncrobit and Bobcat are at bit tricky and while it may be possible, I am not quite sure there.
If you can use Balena Etcher to drop an image on an SD card and copy/paste some lines of code in a Terminal window via SSH, then you can get off to the races for this project.
What do I need?
- Single Board Computer – Either a Raspberry Pi from a Helium miner or if you want to purchase a board, I would recommend the Libre Le Potato (much cheaper and does the same thing). Raspberry Pi are just too expensive due to scarcity.
- RTL-SDR Dongle – This USB dongle provides the radio receiver for the transponder data that you will be getting paid to capture.
- Antenna – If you have an antenna that you used for Helium mining, it should work for this project if you are in the United States. 915MHz (US&CAN) is close enough to 1090MHz that the transponder information that is being captured. NOTE- If using a previous antenna setup from Helium, many of those are RP-SMA connectors and the SDR uses SMA, so you will need an adapter to work.
Payments to your wallet
The DeFli Network is built on the Binance Smart Chain (BSC) so if you are using MetaMask along with a hardware wallet, this is going to be too easy for you. Youwill simple add the Binance Smart Chain network to MetaMask, then add their token contract to your custom tokens list – 0x5a01BDaA010938Eb7615c63cB22cf3e94e8505df