I tested and it dropped out at the rated max range of 10km using a 14dBi patch antenna.
Wow, for some reason I was thinking the max range was under a mile. Is this because you are using a patch antenna? Also, where can I get the antenna you purchased? Thanks.
it depends which Xbee you are talking about. I was using the 60mW PRO 900.
Any 900Mhz patch antenna would do. Just do a local search for "900Mhz patch antenna".
The key is keeping the antenna cable as short as possible so ideally attach the Xbee directly to the back of the antenna.
Here is my writeup on my experiment...
Very good information, thanks for that. I know you said it was a 60mW, but the one I was looking at http://store.diydrones.com/XBee_PRO_900_extended_range_module_w_RPS... states a 10km range and it is a 50mW. Is this the same and I am missing something, or where do I get the more powerful version? Also, what kind of range did you get with your transmitter and receiver, or did you just use the autopilot?
sorry, i think you are right, its 50mW
I really enjoyed the report on your range testing of the XBee Pro 900. Do you know if anyone has tried using more powerful 900MHz transmitters? The FCC limits in the US for the 900MHz band are 30dBm (1 watt) transmitter output power and 36dBm (4 watts) EIRP (Effective Isotropic Radiated Power) from the antenna. Battery issues aside, the 50mW power you noted is a long way from that.
There is a lack of options really. I am really trying to move on try and get a cellular connection working as that would provide unlimited range. Just strugging a bit with the implementation.
Also both the DIY drones store and sparkfun are out of stock on Xbees. Does anyone know what the supply issue is, do we have to find an alternative. I have a dead Xbee which pretty much grounds me until I can get a replacement.